July 20th 2015

Marketing Challenges

A New Generation of Superhero Marketing Managers

Ever had that feeling you’re standing in a crowded room, shouting at the top of your voice but no one is listening?

No, I’m not talking about your experience on Twitter.

I’m talking about the fight marketing managers have for customer attention.

And that’s just one battle.

There’s the fight against competitors, against decreasing budgets, fighting to be different, to make sense of data… to save your job, save the company, SAVE THE WORLD! At least, that’s what it can feel like sometimes.

But don’t give up.

It’s time to don that crimson cape and snap those red spandex pants over your trousers because dear marketing manager; you CAN become the company superhero. All you need is a decent sidekick; the Robin to your Batman, the Wonder Girl to your Wonder Woman, the err…Chewbacca to your Hans Solo?

Anyway, it’s time to introduce you to your new best friend.

Holy Digital Marketing Batman!

If you’re responsible for your organisations marketing, there’s nothing quite like having dedicated back-up that swoops in to help save the day and rescue your revenue goals from sudden death.

Using digital online tools to promote your business is the new sidekick for every caped marketing manager.

And with good reason too.

Digital marketing may only be reinforcement, but boy, can it pack a wallop.

POW: Right in the kisser

Position your brand

Digital marketing can position your brand exactly where it can be seen and with the most impact.

Search engine marketing[1]
Social media marketing[2]
Promotional advertising[3]
Interactive websites[4]

These can all place your product and services in the right place at the right time so that your customers can easily find you. Use them well and they will encourage customers to choose you over competitors.

KA-POW: I’m your biggest fan

Chat with customers

Every superhero has a fan base.

Social media is the perfect place to actively move away from the culture of “OI you! Buy this now” to “what can we do for you?” and “let’s be friends.”

Chatting with customers, adding content they find interesting and appreciating their comments all work to build a fan base of advocates who are happy to promote your services for free, using word-of-mouth, shares, likes, comments and reviews.

All the time boosting brand awareness and helping drive traffic[5] to your website (plus you get valuable insight on what they truly want from your services.)

BAM: The surprise attack

Beauty of digital marketing

The hero always appears in the nick of time.

There’s no “it’s on my to-do list” or sauntering up to the scene of the crime weeks later.

No, superheroes act quickly. This is also the beauty of digital marketing. No longer do you have to wait for your ad to appear in a newsletter 4 weeks later, you now have access to ad creation online in minutes.

This ability to act quickly means a simple post can reach thousands of potential customers in minutes, and a really good video could go viral, reaching millions in days.

Rather than the lengthy wait over customer satisfaction surveys, the speed of digital now provides data about customer preferences in a flash using analytical software.[6]
Creating a wealth of useful information that identifies improvements and helps increase your customer base.

From Digi-Zero to Digi-Hero

Of course the sidekick always needs direction from the hero, it can’t come up with the strategies and promotional ideas all on its own.

With careful planning and even with limited budgets, your digital marketing sidekick can take on Iron Man proportions; kitted out with the latest technology and ready to take out competitors with carefully aimed consumer-seeking missiles.

Just have a look at this example of how one organisation went from digi-zero to digi-hero.

GENERAL ELECTRIC: To Infinity and Beyond

General Electric[7], or GE, describes itself as the next industrial era to move, power, build and cure the world.

But just a few years ago, not many people were interested in the brand GE unless they were in need of a job.

Then around 2012, GE teamed up with their sidekick and out of that collaboration emerged a brand worth searching for.

The Marketing Director for GE, Linda Boff8 had this to say about their use of digital marketing:

Social platforms have allowed us to get closer to our customers and tell stories about the human impact of what we do. We’ve found when we’re able to tell relevant stories — both about our challenges as well as our successes … people reach out to us and share their experiences as well.

We couldn’t agree more. By connecting on a social level, with genuine interest in their customers, GE changed conceptions of marketing within the tough sector of B2B. Just take a look-see:

Pinterest[9]: By pinning their own creative (and pretty awesome) content, GE have established a decent following and inspired share after share (we love the Badass Machines).

Mind - blown mind-blown

twitterTwitter: Not only does GE use Twitter to promote new interactive tools available on their website, but they take the time to comment and build rapport with their fans. This has resulted in a following of over 346k.  Let’s not also discount some effective social media campaigns they started too, such as how they celebrate Inventors’ Day #IWantToInvent[10].

Yes, we agree. They are a big company with a larger budget than most. However simply engaging customers online doesn’t actually require a large budget.  It just requires a change of thinking. As the GE Marketing Director sums it up:

“Nobody buys a jet engine online, but when you think about it, nobody buys a can of Coke online either” – Linda Boff, GE Executive Director.

So the principals remain the same, engage with customers online, measure the response and reap the rewards no matter what type of business you are promoting.

I’m the best there is at what I do

Taking on the job of developing digital marketing for your organisation can be a daunting task.

After all, it’s not just adding some policies and procedures here and there; it’s more, of a culture change for you and the company.

But an exciting change full of fun and behind the scenes photos; not like that time when everyone had to start memorising 10 digit codes for voicemails and the photocopier.

However today’s marketing manager isn’t required to possess every skill needed for digital marketing.

Otherwise you would all have to be experts in SEO, UX, clickstream analytics and PPC advertising.

Sorry, did I lose you for a second. Not to worry.

With skilled and experienced digital marketing services available online and social media specialists at prices more reasonable than ever before, no marketing manager will ever have to battle for customer attention alone.

As long as marketing teams understand their business objectives and have access to some decent ideas and creativity; then together with their outsourced sidekick they can RULE the world… no wait… SAVE the world. Yes, that’s totally what I meant to write. Save the world.

Maybe you have been inspired by some digital marketing team-ups or campaigns on a budget? We’d love to hear more superhero stories for digital marketing in the comments below.

Oh, and if anyone knows which famous hero said the phrase of our last subject title ‘I’m the best there is at what I do’– we’ll give you a free shout-out to all our 7,000+ followers.

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