Much has changed in the world of marketing. Not so long ago, marketing was a creative discipline rooted deeply in the arts, driven primarily by instinct and gut reaction. A continual process of trial and error, marketing personnel and organizations created ideas they thought would motivate potential customers to take action, hoping to engage them and move them along the buying lifecycle.
In those days, much of the measurement of the effectiveness of a given marketing initiative was left to subjective opinion and a general analysis as to whether or not the campaign met the ‘feel good’ test.
Much has changed. And changed quite rapidly. Over the course of the last several years, the marketing function has dramatically shifted. While still an art form, the marketing function and its related activities has taken on the approach of science. No more do we evaluate the effectiveness of a marketing initiative through a ‘feel good’ analysis or surveying internal personnel to see if they ‘liked’ the recent campaign. Of course, positive reviews in this respect are still nice and offer some level of validation. However, today’s marketing initiatives are designed from their start to allow for empirical measurement. They are built upon a defined set of targeted KPIs, some of which are benchmarked against industry best practices. And, they are ultimately measured. At least this is the approach for those engaging in what has become commonly referred to as ‘Modern Marketing’.
The Modern Marketing organization, like many other groups within today’s typical company is undergoing a metamorphosis. As Digital Transformation makes its steady march across all corporate functions, the marketing organization is not being left out. In fact, in some respects the marketing organization is leading the effort. This explains why according to a recent Forrester Research study, 55% of marketing line of business leaders intend to make technology investments in the next year.
These investments are coming in a number of areas, inclusive of content creation, SEO, marketing automation systems and appointment scheduling to name a few. Marketing line of business leaders in these organizations recognize that their primary mission is just as much about capturing new marketing and sales qualified leads as it is promoting a particular product or the corporate brand. With the aforementioned technology investments, marketers can now see, in real time, the effectiveness of their activities, determine which of their strategies and campaigns prove to be most successful and more clearly identify where prospects reside in the buying cycle, thereby leveraging sales resources more effectively.
For those who love the art of marketing, don’t fret. The creative aspect of marketing, the art form per se, is alive and well. It is still the art form which is responsible for garnering the target audience’s attention and in many cases prompting such audience to act. This creative approach to customer capture is not likely to ever go away. However, with new tools available to marketers the Modern Marketing organization can clearly define their value to their respective companies and in many cases draw a direct line from their activity to the generation of sales revenue and profit.
The Digital Transformation of marketing is well underway. That said, there are still many organizations that are practicing a medieval art form not having recognized that there is a better way. The clock is ticking on these organizations. As we have seen in so many industries, disruption is lurking right around the corner and failure to drive continual improvement in the major functional areas that make up one’s business, particularly new customer capture, is an invitation to future trouble.
As with most company functions, the marketing function is moving quickly to a new set of capabilities supported by a new set of technologies and processes. It’s only a matter of time before the ‘science’ of marketing begins to actively embrace AI and Machine Learning in addition to the automation tools readily available in today’s market.
So, I ask you. Is your marketing organization modern or is it mired in the stone age? Are you practicing the marketing voodoo art or are you taking a more scientific approach to capturing customers?
Feel free to share your experiences with Modern Marketing. We’d love to hear from you!