Are You Responding to Corporate Marketing Priorities?

The way companies market is changing and so are their priorities. As sponsorship professionals seeking support from the corporate sector, it is imperative that we recognize this evolution in marketing and build more meaningful partnerships that address corporate objectives head-on.

From what I’ve read recently, the following marketing priorities will be occupying the minds of marketers in 2018:

1. Topping the list of priorities was Understanding the Customer and their Buying Journey. In a nutshell, companies are focused on data, to identify, track and convert prospects into customers. They are using this information to develop products and messages that resonate with a variety of customer profiles.

2. Movement towards One-On-One Marketing and Providing Unique Customer Experiences – in today’s complicated consumer environment, customers are looking for unique and engaging experiences. By creating social experiences and emotional connections, you can forge deeper relationships with your customers.

3. Brand Storytelling through visual imaging and content messaging. Companies are using a variety of mediums to build awareness and relationships with their customers about their products and values. Your brand story is more than what you tell people. It is what they believe about you based on all the signals your brand sends out.

4. Companies are using Content Marketing as a means of differentiating and supporting their brand as well as offering value back to their customers. Giving useful information without always including a promotion is the key to developing loyalty and trust.

5. Companies are relying more on Social Media for Customer Engagement with creative content, rather than simply sending ads or offers.

Although there were lesser priorities, these five stood out as essential in the marketing mix. As you can see, they are mainly focused on communicating brand attributes and building a unique customer experience that encourages repeat visits and long-term loyalty.

The bottom line is that if we are focused solely on logo exposures, we are missing the mark in supporting the unique priorities of companies. While visibility and exposure provide a good starting point, we need to move beyond logo placement to be relevant and valuable in the minds of sponsors considering where to place their marketing dollars.

What are you doing to update your sponsor benefits packages to better reflect today’s corporate marketing priorities?

All You Have is 8 Seconds

photo_brainAccording to experts, we now have 8 seconds to keep people’s attention span says Brian Thwaits, Brain Trainer, who delivered the Closing Keynote at MARCOM’s 19th annual conference on May 30-31, 2017 in Ottawa. MARCOM Annual Conference is produced by the Centre of Excellence for Public Sector Marketing as a means of helping to advance marketing and communications in the nonprofit and public sectors. Continue reading “All You Have is 8 Seconds”

What Marketing Must Do to Thrive in the Public and Nonprofit Sectors

19351106-business-man-writing-marketing-plan-conceptIn the public sector and nonprofit communities, marketing has traditionally been viewed as a “money pit” where you constantly feed money, but nothing ever comes out. There was never any real accountability for driving results for the organization. Senior executives didn’t understand marketing’s role, nor how it was tied to its organization’s visibility in the marketplace; the program or business development team viewed marketing as a waste of dollars where it had little impact on increasing business transactions, and the finance department thought marketers were simply strange aliens from another planet that didn’t speak the same language. If it was based on achieving specific goals, they were fairly loose, with ambiguous objectives like “increased visibility” or “public outreach” or “awareness”.

The year 2017 is when marketing will finally take a foothold in these organizations as the smart organizations realize that they need to go beyond being great product or service organizations – they need to be great marketing organizations. The world is simply too fractured now and customer loyalty is at an all-time low. Marketing is needed more than ever and in order for organizations to achieve their goals, they need a laser-type focus where marketing performance is measured against objectives and there is continuous improvement.

In 2017, marketing will be measured on its ability to drive growth for the organization. Whether it’s driving qualified leads for new members, increasing attendance at an event or delivering new fundraising dollars, it is aimed at achieving an organizational goal. Smart marketers in these organizations are doing a better job at showing how their efforts are contributing to the goals and success of the organization.

Here’s what I see as the big roles of marketing in 2017:

1. Understanding better than anyone, who the customer is and how best to reach and communicate with that individual or community;
2. Driving clarity and articulating the organization’s brand and value proposition, both internally and externally;
3. Managing the end-to-end customer experience;
4. Integrating communication channels so that money is being spent on the right mediums and messages are consistent and support the brand;
5. Tying marketing activities to the goals of the organization and the customer sales cycle, and measuring the role and effectiveness of marketing in achieving these goals.

By clarifying the marketing function, it can be elevated to a higher state of existence in an organization where it becomes an essential part of the organizational “mix” and a key contributor at the senior leadership level.

Later, BC