Gini Dietrich is the CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm based in Chicago. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and, of course, co-author of Marketing in the Round with Geoff Livingston. This is the first of three follow-up posts related to the awesome Marketing in the Round Think Tank webinar that Gini presented for us as part of our Think Tank Summer Series. Get the recording here. Part 3 coming up tomorrow! Part 1 is here.
We’re taking your questions in order to help you integrate your marketing and communications, choose the right approaches, and measure your results.
In the first post, you learned about breaking down silos and budgeting for your marketing round.
Today we’ll take a look at staffing and measurement.
How do you identify the right person to be at the center of the round? What traits should that person have?
As a communications professional, I’d love to say it’s my peers. Unfortunately, I can’t in good faith say that. You need someone in the center of the round who understands how each of the disciplines work and when to bring each into the fold.
That person likely has worked at an organization where they were integrated and they were exposed (or even worked with) other disciplines. For instance, I worked in the PR department at an ad agency. They did advertising, direct, and public relations. So I was exposed to many different disciplines in the work we did for clients.
You want someone in the center of the round who knows how the other disciplines work, how to measure the results from those tactics, and when it’s appropriate to bring in (or remove) each.
There’s a lot of talk in the blogosphere about the new position of Chief Marketing Technologist – is “marketing in the round” possible in one role, or is it all about connecting multiple roles?
The chief marketing technologist, as it’s being positioned in the blogosphere, is the person who ties together marketing and IT. We always joke that the role of the marketer is to try all of these new tools and the role of the IT professional is to make sure they can’t connect to them from work.
Never before have marketing and IT needed to work so closely together so roles are being created to not only integrate the two departments, but to do it smoothly while also understanding the security risks IT professionals are trained to watch.
Could the person in the middle of the marketing round be that person? Sure. As long as he or she also knows how to integrate the other disciplines.
What skills do you need to have on the team vs skills you can outsource?
I believe pretty strongly that your audiences, customers, stakeholders, and employees want to have a conversation with you online, not some PR or marketing professional who doesn’t work inside your organization. That said, there are many things an outsourced professional or agency can do to free up your time to allow your internal team to have the conversations. Things such as strategy development, creation of an editorial calendar, scheduling of updates, monitoring the conversations, finding news and links of interest, and coaching. But your internal team should have the authority to not only have online conversations, but be able to make decisions that will create a happy customer.
Re SMARTER goals – how do we know we’re measuring the right things?
Unfortunately, the online world has been rife with fans and followers and views and traffic for the past few years. I call these ego-driven metrics because they sure make you feel good, but they don’t necessarily mean you’re converting. You want to figure out how to measure things that drive to real business results. For instance, my experience is in the for-profit world, so there are three things we measure against: Increased revenue, shortened sales cycle, or improved margins. If you’re not in the for-profit world, perhaps you are doing things that help you get bigger and better grants or creating opportunities for more fundraising. Whatever it is, those are the right things to be measuring against.
What are some common metrics that work across an entire marketing department?
I come from the for-profit world, so the metrics we consider for every client are: Increased revenues, improved margins, and/or a shortened sales cycle. In a non-profit or membership-based organization, you could consider increased funding, larger donations, or more members. These are the types of things that will allow you to measure a return-on-investment that is music to the executive team’s ears.
If you’d like more context to these questions, I’m pretty sure Maddie and her team will let you download the on-demand video. You can find that by clicking here.
And, if you have additional questions, don’t be shy about asking them in the comments here. I’ll stop by a couple of times a day to see how I can help.