Consultant Glenn Pasch believes that marketing begins online and doesn’t end until a customer makes a purchase. He also thinks that different efforts working in self-contained “silos” will kill business. His new book, “The Power of Connected Marketing,” is now available on Amazon.com. Pasch says that in today’s media climate, complex marketing teams must work together effectively:
Pasch, CEO of Pasch Consulting group in Eatontown, has spent most of his 25-year career in digital marketing, training, and corporate consulting for various companies . Before that, he worked as a bartender, waiter, host, and cook. He graduated from Rutgers in 1982 with a bachelor’s in business administration and Spanish. Below is an excerpt from his new book:
Too often we hear business leaders and agencies talking about their marketing efforts in terms of “traditional” marketing and “digital” marketing. What this classification has done is to create different messages and confusion for both parties because one team (or silo) does not know what the other is doing. Our goal with this book is to change the marketing silo mentality in businesses and to allow people to focus on their marketing efforts as a whole or connected effort.
For example, I spoke to a digital marketing manager for a midsize automotive dealer group one day. We were discussing how to reallocate some of his marketing dollars, and immediately the marketing silo language came out of his mouth. We were discussing the benefits of video preroll and possibly moving some of his marketing budget from cable TV over to this online video marketing product. When I asked him what cable spots he was running and how often they were running, he said that he did not know. He was not privy to that.
This brief exchange reinforced a symptom of marketing in general but especially in the automotive vertical. I have seen, in my time as CEO of PCG, a great many unconnected marketing efforts because offline marketing is not in tune with online efforts. Too many times marketing silos rule decisions. I believe this was an outgrowth of leadership having an ad agency that handled all their marketing needs previously, and as digital marketing began to grow, it was not something this ad agency could handle. This led to hiring a new agency to market online or, worse, just getting products and spending money without having a strategic partner to guide this marketing spend. Thus, two marketing silos were created; and thus, no one exchanged information.
The goal of this book is to change this dialogue and get people to focus on connected marketing efforts, by looking at the customer journey from offline, to online, to in-store or anywhere the customer connects to your message. An industry expert said, “What is the goal of almost all of your offline marketing today? To drive the viewer to your website where you have all of your online marketing efforts. So if both of your marketing teams are not communicating, then between offline and online teams, how will that union work?” I agree. As I said to this manager, where is the “traditional” marketing silo sending the clicks? What is the message they are sharing? If it is not connected with your online efforts, then the customer will receive a disjointed experience, and you will lose potential sales.
What needs to happen beginning today is that all marketing partners have to have a seat at the connected marketing table.
What should a connected marketing process look like? Here are a few quick ideas.
Think of the shopper’s path from stimulus (offline marketing) and how/where it will drive these interested people online (website, research, etc.).
Make sure messaging of all marketing efforts match in color and feel.
Make sure that marketing can track the interaction back to the offline asset if offline marketing efforts are sending individuals to a specific page on the website or using a specific phone number to contact the business.
Leadership has to treat both groups as a part of the whole marketing message. So if the path is offline (TV, radio, print) to online (website, etc.) to on-site (banners, signs, posters), then you have a consistent path for the consumer to follow in order to do business with you.
Once we have our offline team and online team at the table, we have to invite a third: on-site marketing.
What do I mean by on-site marketing? What is in your brick-and- mortar store that continues the marketing effort for your customer? Let’s take that journey.
The offline team has created a great TV spot highlighting a special offer your business is providing for a holiday weekend. They reach out to the online team to explain the ad/message and ask them what website URL they should use in the spot to send the traffic to the right place.
The digital team then creates a special landing page highlighting the offer with a strong call to action. The key is that the visual of the ad matches what they saw on TV. The digital team then continues by promoting the campaign on the website and online. They may do it through blog content, social media, as well as using a remarketing banner and video preroll campaign on YouTube. The goal is to engage the customer and get them to contact the dealership.
We know through different research projects that 70 percent of customers do not contact the company before coming in. For those who call or e-mail, the staff on-site needs to make sure that those responding are up to date on the promotion. What happens, though, when the customer just walks in? This is now where on-site marketing comes into play.
When the customer enters the building, they need to see visual stimulus that confirms this is the right location. Are there signs and banner stands showing the promotion that they saw online? Are there table tents or flyers confirming that this is indeed the location that marketed that offer?
Use on-site marketing tools to finish your marketing journey. If you do not, then you run the risk that the customer is unsure if they are in the right location and leave.
Not having your three teams to the table, working in unison is no longer an option. Without a strong three-headed solution, the customer journey is disrupted. In this very competitive marketplace, those who make it easy for the customer to find what they were looking for will win. Remember, silos will kill your business.