How multi-disciplinary teams can work more collaboratively on digital strategy
Digital marketing agencies have a dream; that all teams work seamlessly together to deliver integrated, multi-channel strategies whilst practising impeccable channel level expertise. A hive mind of digital expertise connected to one effective strategy.
The reality is that this dream needs a lot of work, a culture of proactive and inquisitive thinking. A continuous passion to increase knowledge within a chosen discipline as well as showing interest in other channels and the sectors that we work across.
The key to striving towards a closer realisation of this dream is to create building blocks for the ideal culture to thrive. Building blocks which create purposeful connections and simple thought processes which manifest in a collective focus on impactful outcomes.
So, where do you start? Here are 4 types of building blocks to apply to team sessions which I believe create a natural structure for teams to deliver effective multi-channel strategies:
1. Create milestones for all teams to work towards
A milestone is a significant stage in the development of an overriding strategy. It can help to set a ‘North Star’ within a period of planned growth.
Milestones could be a campaign message delivered in a specific timescale, a product launch, a seasonal increase in demand or even a sales milestone based on shifting customer perception.
By recognising these throughout a planned timescale it can give a multi-disciplinary team a specific focus outside of channel KPIs and it will add a narrative to that given period to help align clients’ expectations.
2. Set a product focus
Product launches can be considered a milestone, so to shift focus away from a product event, one way of growing collaboration within a team is by setting a product or service challenge.
Setting a strategy at a product or service level will challenge the team to better understand the purpose of what they are trying to market and how customers make a conversion decision.
This will draw out the different expertise within the team to create a rounded product strategy as opposed to individual channel acquisition strategies. This will naturally create different channel mixes to target different types of products and services.
Knowing when to create demand, create a connection or harvest demand is critical for your teams to become rounded marketeers and have a wider view of the role their discipline plays.
3. Work towards shared goals
When a team are comfortable delivering against channel KPIs, which might be related to traffic, revenue, ROI or something else intrinsically two dimensional, there’s an opportunity to challenge them to create collective change.
A linear channel view of ROI can pitch budgets and channels against each other, warping the impact a marketing strategy may have on its potential customer base. A collective approach to maximising ROI over a set period of time (say 6 months) can dramatically shift channel phasing and budgets.
Channels can start to support each other in achieving multiple goals whilst refining one overarching business target or expectation. As an example, investing in brand or a long-term organic search strategy are sometimes the best way to reduce the ROAS of an efficient PPC channel.
4. Apply trends as a team
Every sector fluctuates with trends and shifts in customer behaviour. These trends can be visible to the teams but they often have a blinkered view of how the trends impact their specific discipline or channel.
Trends should be recognised and discussed as a team. They present ways of developing future strategies, identifying gaps and opportunities in the market and language patterns which can be related to messaging and content across multiple channels. Trends can help connect customers to both brand and product messaging providing a golden thread through channel activity.
Building a collaborative future
These tactics and building blocks can help to shape how your teams think, collaborate and apply their expertise in a more cohesive way to deliver integrated strategies with a common focus.
Applying these approaches will help to build a more pre-emptive and attentive culture, building more curiosity into teams to engage with clients and deliver more effective, long-term results.
If you want some help designing and implementing a multi-channel strategy for your brand, make sure to get in contact.
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