According to ChiefMartec, the martech landscape grew by about 40% this year "to a total of 5,381 solutions (from 4,891 unique companies)." Big data is here to make you more successful and martech can play a critical role in customer insight and engagement. Still, how to make sense of thousands of solutions? Find a good partner, internally or externally, to help guide you through the process. However, as always, a good understanding of who you are and where you are going, will serve as your guiding light and will help you zero in on what exactly you need.
Remember the time when people sat in front of the TV and paid attention to commercials? When you walked into a business meeting and you found five people happy spend the next 30 minutes passively listening to your presentation? Yeah, we don’t either. Nobody has time for that. As communication professionals, we have had to shift from trying to persuade customers to trying to influence their decisions. Our stakeholders filter, block, ignore and delete – unless what we provide is relevant to them. That is why relevance is not just one of full.stop's six criteria of outstanding communication, it is a necessary requirement. Know your audiences. Don’t just list and map them. Gain real insight. What are their goals and challenges? Why are they (not) doing what you want them to do? Only then can you create communication that is relevant to them and pass their spam filters.
Put down your tools for a second. You are a communication manager, not a technician.
Can you keep up? Technology is changing our world, especially our media and communication, constantly and rapidly. We are witnessing an explosion of touchpoints, i.e. the points at which we interact with our customers and other stakeholders.
Whereas many touchpoints used to be paid (advertisements on TV or in a newspaper, billboards, etc.), most now live online. The Internet has freed businesses from the dependency on (expensive) paid media, but it has also created a free-for-all as companies vie for the most likes, retweets, and downloads with an endless supply of animations, virtual reality, apps, videos, online content, click bait, etc.
Not so long ago, communication so expensive that much thought went into strategy and translating that into a Big Idea. Today, more is more. The cost of communicating has gotten so low that the common approach seems to be: let’s just throw enough mud at the wall and some of it might stick. However, the rise of “cheaper” earned and owned media masks the fact that getting it right still matters. And that getting it wrong is still an expensive proposition.
When we started full.stop, we were an agency that created smart communication campaigns, tool mixes and individual tools for customers. We still do. But too much of communication has been reduced to tool production. The means have become the end. “Do we need an app? What social media should we use? Infographics are cool. Can we have some made? How about iPhone video? We need likes! Right?... But we have always done a brochure. Why stop now?”
Along the way, we figured out that our true value is in how we can help customers cut through the clutter, not contribute to it. In other words, we want to focus on what communication is really about: reaching, engaging and convincing a target audience, to deliver the business goals you have set.
So instead of more-more-more, we go back to the basic 1-2-3 of communication. Who are you, what is your audience and how does that translate into communication needs and to dos? Your communication tools are a logical reflection of who you are and where you want to go, and who your stakeholders are and where they are going. That’s why the tools come at the end, not the beginning.
Once a strategy (your big.picture, as we call it) is in place, we craft your custom campaigns, mixes and tools. Instead of simply developing the tools that are trending now or, on the flip side, build the media you know because “you have always done it this way,” we set out to meet the six criteria for communication that works in our cluttered society. Specifically, we want to develop communication that is consistent, effective, efficient, authentic, relevant and remarkable. In short, we want to get your communication right and can’t wait to get started.