How to write digital marketing brief?

Is your client servicing person sounding repetitive & still talking about SEM, SEO & Display in the weekly strategy meetings?

Does your weekly marketing reporting dashboard still looks the same with acronyms like CPM, CPC, CTR etc.?

Are the strategic discussions in your marketing team still hovering around reducing cost per acquisition?

If any of the above is true, then you should definitely fire few people or the agency because the world has moved on from these archaic goals & matrices. With the tsunami of smart devices hitting the shores of our digital world, there is a massive change in the adjacent marketing landscape. Last I heard:

PC sales were at an all time low & following a negative growth trend,

Smartphones & Tablets sales was expected to overshadow PC sales by the end of 2013 (read IDC report on Connected Device Projections by 2017 & Tablets sales forecast)

Google had started doing mass production of its next generation wearable tech Google glass – Read this

And guess what , in the middle of all this phenomenon change, your client servicing & digital marketing teams are still discussing about how to optimise your cost per acquisition.

Frankly speaking, it is not your mistake, most of the digital teams around the world are still obsessed with making your brand a super successful social brand on the Facebook, twitter & pintrest but deep down inside your heart says that all this is nothing but a wild goose chase. Having said that, I am not out-rightly denying the importance of these tried & tested cost effective marketing tools. It is just that the thought process needs to adapt with time.

In my opinion, mobility will soon force the brands to change their brief to the servicing teams so that they can successfully achieve the long term marketing objectives. Ideally, the new marketing brief would surely have below 2 components:

  • Find out ways to catch & engage with the target audience while they are on the move. In short, make the brand adaptive to mobile environment.
  • Optimise the marketing plan across all current & foreseeable devices (PC was yesteryear story, Mobile & Tablets will easily cover next few years. This is very important because off late pace of growth in the digital device industry has just gone exponential. Keeping the integrated Acquisition, Engagement & Retention plan ready which is connected across all devices & platforms would become the next big thing among brands( Read about Cross Screen Marketing )

It is high time that marketing teams should start re-calibrating their marketing briefs for the client servicing teams as otherwise they might miss the mobile bus like the way a lot of them did when online took the world by storm.

6 ways to execute low budget digital campaign

This is a very common situation faced by most of the digital companies (especially ad agencies) these days. Personally, I use to be so scared of the moment when my client would say that there are limited budgets or the budgets are slashed just when I was about to present a million dollar media engagement ( of which at least I was fully convinced ) or a fancy “IPL / BPL / ITPL type” sponsorship deal.

You could actually hear a stunned silence in the meeting room which is full of planners, client servicing and of course the business manager. Within 5 minutes, your entire servicing team would lose the taste of their machinated coffee and you (as Account Manager) are looking for a place to hide.

You don’t know what would you tell your boss, should you update the CV in the meeting room or after reaching office? Your quarterly revenue target now seems like a “mission to mars”.

Here’s what I have to say, don’t lose hopes yet. It is not just about money right now, there’s a lot more you can do to hold that client forever. Control that moment and use it to your advantage.

In a situation like this when you have to run a low budget campaign and the client is not willing to pump in more dollars, instead of panicking and letting that small budget go to alternative marketing or not being spent at all, you need to bring your best saviour forward – Content.

Here are few ways in which you could run low budget campaign in digital:

First

Find out the most critical needs of the client at that very moment, make a comprehensive wish list shared by the client. It could be,

  • generating leads for their upcoming product
  • creating engagement within a target segment
  • building reach in a specific geo
  • driving traffic to their corporate website
  • increasing video views of their new commercial.

and so on and so forth.

Second 

prioritise the wish list & discuss it with the client as to what is the most important need at that point of time. Lets just say, it is building reach in a specific geo location.

Third

There is no need to do an integrated digital marketing when the budgets are limited. Instead, generate as much powerful branded content (in the form of images, text & video) as you can using this money since that will help you generate buzz, not just in that geo but everywhere. Most importantly, a brand can host that content on their site to drive powerful SEO for a long time.

Create strong powerful ideas for local audience to create some UGC as a part of your campaign. It could be a simple concept around selfies/ videos or anything for brand advocacy would do just fine.

Fourth

Utilise free media channels like social & email databases to promote it within the targeted Geo. Make sure you cover all the possible digital touch points to seed the branded content. In fact, try creating as much liquid content as possible and distribute it outside conventional social channels like Facebook, Twitter, google+, blogs or Instagram.

Fifth

Offer your client best value for money in that limited budget by generating series of localised video content for the specific geo (even better if it is in native language) that can be distributed on diverse video platforms like Youtube, Vimeo etc.

Sixth

Show him the huge value you’ve created by achieving multiple marketing objectives within the limited budget you were given. The report should have the following:

  1. Unique hits on website
  2. Video views
  3. Content downloads
  4. Leads Generated ( through Content Marketing )
  5. Social Engagement – new users added on Facebook/ Twitter
  6. Liquid Content Created

Low-Marketing-Budget-Content-Marketing

Remember, there is nothing better than seeing a smile on the face of your client, and if you really offer him value when budgets are low, he would spend with open heart when there are bigger budgets.

Digital Trends in Mobile App Marketing for 2014

With the pace at which connected tech is evolving, very soon Smart TVs, integrating television along with the power Internet technologies and social media, will replace Television.

Having said that, India is still world’s third largest television market in the world with a combined viewership of 415 million. Millions of these potential Consumers still consuming majority of their daily entertainment & infotainment through television broadcast on a daily basis.

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4 simple hacks to close more digital ad sales

In my career, I must have interacted with hundreds of digital ad sales professionals from around the globe, while some of them were my colleagues, others I’ve worked closely with as a client. Often the difference between a good, bad & ugly ad sales person is visible immediately after the first meeting.

With social media becoming one of the most sought after marketing platform, role of an ad sales person has become even more tougher as most of the marketing focus & priority has shifted to capturing social landscape through powerful audience engagements on Facebook, Twitter & YouTube.

Interestingly, even after a significant change of media landscape, there is tremendous opportunity for ad-sales teams to offer value to the advertiser. Lets not forget, most of the brand advertisers hate blindness when it comes to spending their marketing dollars and they keep on looking for newer avenues & opportunities to reach out to their target audience.

Besides having great client relationship skills here are few pointers that can really help the ad sales to make a strong business case:

Talk Marketing not Sales

Whenever you are meeting any brand or marketing person, do not start the conversation with your website / ad network / solution, instead set the context from how marketing teams are leveraging digital platform for achieving different metrics. Always keep a case study handy from a latest successful marketing campaign. Even better if your website/ product was part of that campaign. That gives you a connect or hook to bring your service / solution into the discussion without making it look like a cheap sales pitch.

Listen, not Speak

It is difficult for an ad sales guy but I’ve seen this on numerous occasions in my career, meetings where the client is talking 60% of the time are more successful compared to when the sales person is too busy delivering a never ending sales pitch. You have to find a way to bring your client into the discussion. Listening to your client will give you clues as to how to make your offering relevant to the client’s most critical requirement. Even more important, client would give you complete hint as to how they want the proposal to look like. Do not let your “typical” sales mentality rule over you. It is time to listen and not speak.

Know about your Technology

One of the reasons why digital selling has become increasingly difficult is because nothing remains constant in the digital world. Technology has made every strategy a perishable. So in order to be in the driving seat, you must know what is going on in the technology world. Keep an eye on the competition, has anyone launched an app in your domain, how popular is that app? How can a client use re-targeting in their campaign? Which ad platform offers best technology? Which campaign used technology in the best possible manner & how?

Often during the client meetings, you would see the conversations digressing into different directions, often technology becomes the topic of interest across brand & marketing teams. For someone who is not aware of these changes may just lose interest of the client very easily. Especially, when you meet your client in a third party event or seminar, your knowledge can really get you great clients for long term.

Learn to move on

Know when to stop chasing any client. Imagine, you’re after a huge account with big potential, and it seems like your solution is just what they are looking for. Yet, many times, a sure thing turns out to be a no-go. Digital salespeople waste too much time chasing what they think should be the ideal fit. Instead, focus on the clients who love what you’re offering, and build those partnerships. You never know; you might just find a winning approach for your client after focusing your attention elsewhere for a short time. Then you can go back to them later with a killer proposal.

Digital Case Study – FMCG – Mcdowells #No1Yaari

With video advertising becoming the most potent engagement weapon in the digital marketing parlance, brands & ad agencies have quickly grabbed this opportunity with both hands & using it to maximise their advertising ROI.

Mcdowells, as a brand, has been a big fan of using long & short form videos in the past to promote their brand message. Clearly, their spends have gone up significantly in the last 3-4 years, especially into digital. I am sure a lot is to do with their target segment which is mainly SEC A,B Youth & young adults. Continue reading