Learming Hub
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            [post_content] => Cathy Winston is a facilitator and consultant in Strategic Marketing. She has worked with blue chip companies worldwide, companies looking to scale and start-ups to identify growth strategies, with a strong track record of commercial achievement.  Cathy lectures on Innovation and Marketing and teaches on IMI’s Mini MBA

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Digital Marketing Communications….Spending more and more but have no idea if it’s working or not?

Chances are this statement is true for many companies, because they have failed to answer 3 key marketing questions before jumping right in.
  1. Who are your target customers?
  2. What message will be needed for you to engage them and convert them to your product or service?
  3. What media do they use to get information about or connect with, products like yours and where does digital fit within that?
  I see too many incidences of businesses using digital marketing as their only marketing process and their main communications process, primarily because everyone else is or they think they will lose out if they don’t or worse still it is a cheap way to market the business. But without clarity around the questions above, they are likely to lose out anyway, because they will not have relevant content for the relevant audience. Without taking the time to do your marketing strategy before your communications plan, it is highly unlikely you will have an effective digital plan. Marketing is about winning in your market space. This means providing products and services to your customers that are better and different than your competitors to make a profit. So while it may seem laborious, it is imperative that your business sets about identifying it’s key customers and understanding their needs. Next, make sure you are delighting them before shouting about it. Now, you can communicate to them. Only at that stage, decide if digital is part of their world when looking for your product. Marketing asks you to look at exploring value, creating value and then delivering value. It is this that grows your business. It is this that grows your margins and profits and it is this that allows you to charge premium prices. Yes, it does take time to get information about your customers and it takes time to think it through to your product or service, but that has to be better than just throwing money at SEO, PPC or e-marketing, hoping it will do the job for you. If that was the case, everyone would be just sitting back and counting the money.     [post_title] => Digital Marketing - A bottomless pit? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => digital-marketing-communications-spending-idea-working [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2020-05-11 20:56:36 [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-05-11 20:56:36 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=9370 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 11945 [post_author] => 63 [post_date] => 2015-10-05 11:20:50 [post_date_gmt] => 2015-10-05 11:20:50 [post_content] =>
Thimon de Jong runs over the past ten years has consulted with leading organisations such as Ikea, Deloitte, Aon, Samsung and GDF Suez, on sharpening their business strategies to sync with wider socio-cultural trends. Thimon runs his own company, Whetston, a strategic foresight think tank. He also teaches at Utrecht University on how sociocultural trends can be used to improve business strategy. He will be a keynote speaker at the IMI National Management Conference on 8 October 2015 IMI: Based on your current work – if you only had 6 words of advice to give a business - what would they be?

TDJ: Develop a digitally balanced business strategy

IMI: What does this mean? TDJ: Society, human behaviour, business: our world is rapidly getting more and more digital. But parallel to this development, the need for the real, the personal and the unconnected is growing. In the future, a successful strategy will cater both these trends with a digital balance in any part of business: products, services, marketing communication, HR etc. IMI: Where should we look for further information? TDJ: This fall, I will release a series of articles on this, published via LinkedIn and my website: www.whetston.com NMC 2015 A4 HEADER Thimon de Jong is a keynote speaker at the IMI National Management Conference taking place on Thursday 8 October. This event has now reached maximum capacity however if you would like to be added to the waiting list, please email your contact details and company name to conference@imi.ie. [post_title] => "Develop a digitally balanced business strategy" Six Word Wisdom from Thimon de Jong [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => private [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => develop-digitally-balanced-business-strategy-six-word-wisdom-thimon-de-jong [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2023-12-13 18:23:44 [post_modified_gmt] => 2023-12-13 18:23:44 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=11945 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 16058 [post_author] => 89 [post_date] => 2016-09-20 14:18:38 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-09-20 14:18:38 [post_content] => 2016 photo Sydney Finkelstein Sydney Finkelstein is the Steven Roth Professor of Management and Director of the Center for Leadership at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College, where he teaches courses on Leadership and Strategy.  He is also the Faculty Director of the flagship Tuck Executive Program, and has experience working with executives at a number of other prestigious universities around the world.  His latest bestselling book is SUPERBOSSES: How Exceptional Leaders Master the Flow of Talent. He will be a keynote speaker at the IMI National Management Conference on 29th September 2016.   IMI: Based on your current work – if you only had 6 words of advice to give a business – what would they be?

SF: Great leaders create other great leaders.

IMI: What does this mean? SF:  Imagine a world where the work you did really mattered. Where the person who you call your boss changed your life by helping you accomplish more than you ever thought possible. Where your own opportunities would multiply in ways you may have been afraid to even dream of. That’s the world of “superbosses”, leaders with an incredible track record of generating world-class talent time and again. By systematically studying business legends and pop culture icons like Lorne Michaels, Ralph Lauren, George Lucas, Larry Ellison, Miles Davis, Charlie Mayfield, and Alice Waters, what superbosses actually do comes into focus. And anyone can do these same things. Superbosses identify, motivate, coach and leverage others in remarkably consistent, yet highly unconventional and unmistakably powerful ways. Superbosses aren’t like most bosses; they follow a playbook all their own. They are unusually intense and passionate — eating, sleeping, and breathing their businesses and inspiring others to do the same. They look fearlessly in unusual places for talent and interview them in colorful ways. They create impossibly high work standards that push protégées to their limits. They partake in an almost inexplicable form of mentoring, one that occurs spontaneously and with no clear rules. They lavish responsibility on inexperienced protégées, taking risks that seem scary and foolish to outsiders. When the time is right superbosses may even encourage star talent to leave so they can then become part of a strategic network of acolytes in the industry. IMI: Where should we look for further information? SF: I put together a list of interesting articles related to this subject: Superbosses aren't afraid to delegate their biggest decisions The rise of the superbosses George Lucas: Management Guru? The Power of Feeling Unthreatened Hire People and Get Out of the Way Sydney Finkelstein is a keynote speaker at the IMI National Management Conference taking place on Thursday 29th of September. To register for this event, please click here. [post_title] => "Great leaders create other great leaders" Six Word Wisdom from Sydney Finkelstein [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => great-leaders-create-great-leaders-six-word-wisdom-sydney-finkelstein [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2020-05-11 19:54:28 [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-05-11 19:54:28 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=16058 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) )
Rachel O’Leary

Rachel O’Leary

7th Jun 2017

Rachel O’Leary is an associate faculty member of the IMI and delivers the Marketing module on our Mini-MBA programme.

Related Articles

Digital Marketing - A bottomless pit?
"Develop a digitally balanced business strategy" Six Word Wisdom from Thimon de Jong
"Great leaders create other great leaders" Six Word Wisdom from Sydney Finkelstein

Have you got your digital ducks in a row?

The world has gone mobile, and if your Marketing strategy hasn’t fully embraced this, it’s time to stop playing catch up and get your digital ducks in a row.

There are now more mobiles phones than people in the world, and the latest reports show we spend more time on mobile than at any other daily activity. Not surprisingly 1 in every 4 minutes on a mobile phone is spent on Facebook or Instagram. In fact, there are 2.3m people on Facebook every day in Ireland alone, and 95% of use is mobile only.

Have you got your digital ducks in a row? (Photo source)

Looking to the future, 61% of millennials now use social media as their primary news source which along with other changes to consumer habits such as voice search, trumpets the demise of websites and search engines. With the rise in social media, for many businesses, you know longer need a website.

For businesses, there has never been a better time to effectively market to customers in a more cost-effective way. Social media platforms allow us to communicate with customers at every stage of the sales funnel and not just increase brand awareness like traditional media. Messaging apps have created direct customer chat channels, and “Smarketing” allows for conversion with a simple touch button.

Whether you are a B2C or B2B company, there is a social media platform for everyone, and even if you are not selling on-line, the R.O.P.O phenonium is here: Researched Online Purchased offline. Mobile allows small businesses to become large and local businesses to become global.

Despite all this opportunity we seem to be slow to fully embrace social marketing. Many Marketing Managers have become digital ducks, outwardly gliding along delivering campaigns that try to be creative in harnessing the advantages that technology brings while paddling furiously under the water trying to keep up with weekly social media platform updates, algorithm changes and new software that promise better performance.

The four pillars of social media mastery are now well documented: Content, Consistency, Listening and Resources. However, it seems the need to create multiple forms of engaging content to be consistently shared across multiple platforms is posing a massive challenge for marketers. In fact, I believe it is this need to build a vast library of digital assets that is posing as the greatest obstacle to embracing mobile marketing and all the rewards it can bring to your business.

So don’t you think as managers it is time that we stop running in circles playing catch up and actually take the reins on mobile marketing? Isn’t it time to start delivering a 360̊ Marketing strategy that fully integrates our communications content with data and technology so we can focus on being creative again?

The first step, of course, is the need to recognise and accept that an entirely new skill set is needed in our organisations. We need to stop the band-aid hiring of digital marketing assistants and start building strong and skilled “MarkTech” teams.

We need to make the business case to identify a budget to invest in training and resources that will develop a team that is a master of technology-enabled platforms married with mastery of the consumer journey and decision-making process.

We need creative Content Producers with graphic design skills, video production and editing skills who are also storytellers with the ability to communicate multiple messages, in multiple formats across multiple platforms. And of course, we need the hardware, software and networks to support this.

We need social media platform specialist who are given the luxury of time to optimise our channels: to create live content, to post the best possible relevant content and to complete social listening. Crucially we need to allow time to sit and research so to stay up to speed with the latest platform updates and functionalities. I wonder just how many managers have encouraged their teams to take the time to watch and digest the numerous hours of footage from last month’s Facebook F8 conference?

We need expertise in search engine and social media optimisation to deep dive into the traffic on our media channels, to understand our customer’s behaviours and connect the dots to maximise our outputs and rewards. The insights gained from a deep understanding of our analytics can then be used to develop accurate customer personas and create highly targeted adverts in a highly cost effective ways, demonstrating the value added that Marketing can bring to our organisations.

It is only when we decide to make the investment in this new MarkTech skillset and recruit, upskill or outsource this dream team of expertise that we will be able to embrace all that mobile marketing strategy and tactics offers and that Marketing teams can focus on being creative and being remarkable once again.

Rachel O’Leary is an associate faculty member of the IMI and delivers the Marketing module on our Mini-MBA programme. Rachel is a Marketing Consultant with 20 years’ experience in the financial services, on-line retail, not for profit and education sectors.  Rachel specialises in Marketing Strategy, Social Media, Corporate Communications, Sponsorship, Event Management and Corporate Responsibility.

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