By Bruno Chami
What do we need to successfully implement a martech roadmap in the Experience Economy? Helping organizations better understand who their customers are and how they interact with their brands will enable a more intuitive customer experience as businesses shift rapidly towards the omni-channel space.
One key area of focus has been to develop brand and campaign strategies that were both customer-centric and insight-led by using a variety of planning tools such as
Program Playbooks / Blueprints
Now, let’s circle back a bit. First, we need a strategy. But what is a good strategy? Think of it as a set of objectives, policies, actions, and plans coming together for the purpose of reaching a business objective and success.
Think of strategy as the path or avenue to take you from point A to point B and think of the martech roadmap as the set of coherent actions and pre-requisites designed to help you complete and achieve that particular strategic objective from start to finish. It can be a structured visual narrative or schematic multi-layered roadmap, aligning multiple perspectives.
What we see is that strategic roadmaps have often been tied back to the company’s vision and their ‘raison d’être’; I came across marketers who frequently faced hurdles that made it hard to navigate and achieve these visions. Why? Because these strategies were good on paper but remained largely ineffective at connecting some of the components back to the company’s vision
In my opinion, four key components are required to successfully enable the implementation of a martech roadmap:
Contrary to other opinions, I think that we should always start with Technology first and then build capability within the business in various stages. Our best customers rent their partner’s expertise, prove value and then subsequently build their internally teams. Let’s look a little bit closer at each one of these components and how they are inter-connected
As you may be aware, technology is disruptive and new technologies keep emerging. Understanding the current state within the company will allow us to identify the martech ecosystem and the set of gaps/skill shortages. A couple of things that you should consider are the following: Are you fully utilizing marketing technologies? Are you using the right one to drive the best-in-class user experience? Is it flexible enough to adapt to changing consumer needs and behaviors? Do you have the best in-house talent of people who understand how to connect the technology stack back to your strategy and help unlock its full potential to drive revenue?
Organizations often tend to buy technology which is half the battle. Coming to us for guidance on how to get the ball rolling with practical implementation of martech roadmaps that mobilize teams, delivers actionable insights and break down silos is ultimately critical to ensure success.
Once technology is implemented, start using a data-driven approach to better understand who interacts with the brand and drive value though identifying high-value customers, behavioral segmentation and hyper-personalization. Each customer touchpoint such as marketing, sales, service, social universe, loyalty etc. historically produced more siloed data which made a single view of the customer quite impossible. And without a single view, delivering a consistent experience across the customer journey becomes challenging
A few thoughts to guide you throughout this phase:
How are you going to use the data in-house? Does it tell a story?
Where is the data sitting? (We often see that data lives in siloes limited by channel, departments, organizational or technological boundaries).
What data sets are missing and from which touchpoints?
Which 1st party data points can be ingested into the technology platform? Can we infuse additional 2nd or 3rd party data attributes back in order to enrich and enable a more connected and seamless experience across the various touchpoints?
Are you going to use data intelligence to understand customer behaviors? Have you set both operational and marketing KPI’s to measure each component of the implementation roadmap by breaking it down into small chunks across each stage of the implementation phase?
What role should data and metrics play to measure success in (12, 18, 24) months?
Have you identified the various pain-points from these data layers and the expected opportunity loss on the business?
Which marketing effectiveness models will you use to determine the MROI (Marketing Return on Investment) of your implementation efforts and how are you going to both attribute and measure the incremental revenue impact of your efforts?
Next, you should start thinking about the type of teams to assemble? What type of in-house capability do you need? project managers, creatives, techies, analysts or a mix of all of them?
Organizations need to absolutely focus on the workforce of the future by addressing talent and the mismatch of skills that is rising up as a result of new disruptive technology. This has been having a profound impact on various aspects of businesses
It is also worth noting that agile methodologies such as scrum have been effective in bringing cross-functional teams together in synergy and breaking down departmental silos to get people to work towards the same vision
Once all the other components are enabled, businesses should start looking at processes in order to connect the marketing strategy, technological transformation and executional discipline into a unified approach. This entails a combination of process re-engineering, process mapping, and improvement efforts in order for the implementation of the martech roadmap to be successful.Historically, the approach towards business process improvement often remained unchanged over time. Despite decades of experience, companies still fail to realize that the ‘status quo’ of their processes tend to hold them from achieving their strategic goals.
Think of technology, data, people and processes as elements inextricably linked and underpinned by a martech roadmap in the experience economy that is defined by a strategy which will enable you to achieve your business goal and deliver an excellent customer experience.
Martech is only one tool to help you deliver on an excellent customer experience. Data and deriving key insights into your customers’ behaviors also play key roles. Find out how to “Go Further with Customer Experience Optimization.”
Read the guide.