Wednesday, June 23, 2010

How Important Is Seamless Marketing

Marketers online and offline are facing new challenges everyday. And the challenges are coming from different channels.

In a survey by Aprimo and Argyle Forum in Apr 2010, 100 Chief Marketing Officers (CMO) were questioned "What is the CMO's biggest challenge today?". And "Integrating and tracking multiple channels", was the answer of 37 (37%) CMOs surveyed, which was the most chosen answer. The rest ones are:

"Doing more with less" 28%
"Accountability/Measurement" 18%
"Being able to control messages in light of social media" 11%
"Keeping up with social media" 6%

This was interesting because I found it too very hard to coordinate the works of different marketing channels to achieve the utmost goal.

And today I received a newsletter from WebProNews, offering a free copy of 54-page ebook by MarketingSherpa, 25 Marketing Lessons. Out of mindless curiosity I clicked it and landed on a Hubspot page:

I was expecting immediate download link. However this page requires from me my email address and other personal information. Strange, hum?!

Why? Because they already had my email address (or how otherwise could they send me that newsletter?) and still asking for it. The main target of this campaign, as I assumed it, was to obtain email information to grow their list. Yet they sent this to me, whose email they already had. Isn't it strange?

This campaign involed at least four parties:

WebProNews (offering brand, targeting subscribers' loyalty)
iEntry (email campaign courier)
MarketingSherpa (offering free ebook, targeting email infomation)
HubSpot (stores the ebook)

The operation could be complicated with so many parties involved, each pursuing its own interest. WebProNews doesn't care because it had something to offer. iEntry is just a courier. HubSpot was only responsible for storage. And MarketingSherpa cares too much about growing its email list. So who's caring about us when we (whose email they already had) landed on the download page and were asked again our email information?

You can see the gap here. So, here comes the real challenge now. And it is marketers' (especially CMOs) responsibility to ensure seamless marketing.

If the only goal of MarketingSherpa's campaign was to obtain email list, then they shouldn' have sent this email to me. And if they have other goals, say, boosting their paid memership, they really should have created anothe landing page allowing direct download of the ebook (or at least shouldn't have asked for my email information).

No wonder so many CMOs has provided that answer - because they have already realised and come across such problems in real practices.

Do you think seamless marketing is important? And how do you think we could ensure it? Any thoughts are welcome.


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