Making a Case for Integrated Digital Marketing StrategiesFriday October 4th, 2013
One small digital marketing team may be better than an army of specialists.
The digital marketing landscape is a mess of emerging technologies and new methodologies, with scores of competing social and ad networks. Every business needs to be there, but knowing which direction to head next is almost impossible. So you bring in the experts. Should you find one digital marketing firm or separate SEO, PPC, social and digital content marketing teams?
While there are certainly many factors and answers to this, many small to medium sized brands, and some large ones, will benefit from a more integrated approach to their digital marketing.
How can a single digital marketing firm compete with specialized teams? With really good digital marketing strategies the magic comes from the interaction and collaboration between initiatives and marketing channels, not separately siloed initiatives. Why do I think that integrated digital marketing strategies are more effective than a campaign split across multiple? Agility, Cohesion and Synergy.
When all initiatives are integrated, pulling from the same budget and running through the same systems and processes, they work together in a way that is impossible with fragmented campaigns. Comparing metrics from one channel to another is easy, and diverting funds to the one that is most effectively accomplishing a given set of goals takes a few hours, not a few weeks. New creative or imagery can be quickly rolled out across many mediums, from a Facebook cover photo to a target email template, without having to orchestrate a group of many different vendors. This flexibility allows digital marketing strategies to pivot on a dime, making it much easier to stay ahead of the curve and leverage short term advantages.
When initiatives work together towards a single set of goals there is no competition to prove that one marketing channel is more effective than others. Decisions are made based on the overarching goals for the project, not on politics and companies scrambling over the marketing budget. A single source for all assets and creative brings more cohesion to the imagery and messaging, but also allows for more interaction and collaboration between initiatives. The creative team, designers and developers have more creative control over the brand as a whole. They are more efficient. A feeling of ownership and pride over the brand makes each piece of creative and strategy more thoughtul and passionate. This is how truly great digital marketing strategies are born.
Synergy is defined as “the interaction of two or more agents or forces so that their combined effect is greater than the sum of their individual effects.” Loosely, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. The collaboration between marketing channels that can only come from a single creative force is the true benefit to unifying your digital strategy front. This is a combination of agility and cohesion, allowing marketers to make truly integrated campaigns that use each channel or platform in concert, increasing the effectiveness of all initiatives. A room full of musicians playing for themselves is chaos, but bring in the conductor and you have a symphony. Nothing is better than a campaign in which all assets and initiatives work together to create a more powerful brand experience for the target audience.
I’m not saying that a single team is better for every company or in every situation, but I do maintain that it is of utmost importance to make sure your marketing initiatives work together. If you have a large enough internal marketing team to put together a strategy and maintain it’s cohesiveness across many vendors, then by all means, bring in the specialists. If you’re like most of us though, with limited resources and headspace to put into your digital marketing strategies, consider bringing in a team that can keep it together for you.