Like every other aspect of business, the way we market is changing fast. We’re seeing some tried-and-true tactics — like big in-person conferences — being put on the back burner or being reimagined digitally. Entirely new marketing methods are emerging, and other established best practices are being updated for a whole new set of challenges. Being resourceful, adaptable and agile is the key to thriving and finding relevance. However, in a recent Gartner CMO study, only 52% of CMOs believed that their teams could make this shift successfully.
Taking care of your customers has always been an imperative, but now your business literally depends on it. You must be keenly aware of how your customers’ markets have shifted, if they’re struggling or how their competitive landscape has changed. Serving them and their needs with empathy is another key. Focus on giving them the experience they need, rather than the one you’re used to selling. Thinking outside the box and engaging stakeholders who aren’t in your marketing organization will help you do this. I’ve found that finance and IT can be great resources to bring a different perspective. As they say, find your tribe and tap into them whenever possible. They will bring new, fresh ideas that you may not have otherwise thought of or considered … and then use them!
Creating personalized experiences across all channels is now a mandate. Digital marketing is no longer a siloed initiative; it is an integrated part of every marketing motion and must be established as part of the marketing culture. By adopting that one strategic shift, you will increase relevancy and form connections with customers and prospects quickly and consistently.
As you’re looking at every stage of your funnel — and all your segments — adoption of AI is critical in order to deepen those connections by serving your audiences appropriately and with the right content. According to the 2020 Marketing Technology Landscape, there are now more than 8,000 martech solutions. The goal is not to use tech for the sake of tech, but to bring together, utilize, adopt and fully take advantage of the right technology that serves your needs and those of your customers and prospects.
While adoption of AI is critical, those who think martech alone is the answer must take a step back. Technology itself won’t solve everything. Simplicity and clarity in how you approach your data and your strategy is imperative regardless of what technology you have helping in the background. You must be clear and simple in your approach to data, which isn’t easy. I’m reminded of the Steve Jobs quote: “Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it's worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.” Jobs was right. Those mountains will move for you if you’re willing to put in the work to move them.
I urge CMOs and marketing leaders to be simple, clear, strategic and empathetic in their thinking and approach. By doing do so, you’ll give yourself and your team the runway to make the many pivots that will be necessary to remain agile and relevant in our new landscape.
Deanna Ransom is the Head of Global Marketing and Marketing Services for Televerde, the preferred marketing, sales and customer experience partner powered by AI and technology leveraged in context by humans with a proven execution model for generating demand and accelerating sales.