REALITY 3 – Smart Integration of New Tools
We so often see organizations paralyzed by the implementation of a new technology where so much time and energy was put into researching just the right solution and then somehow the actual implementation and training was treated as an afterthought. With the best of intentions, decisions were made, large budgets were spent, and now it’s up to the “doers” to implement and ensure the new solution is optimized to the highest level. You know that level – the level of efficiency your software salesperson swore you would achieve with this plug-and-play, cloud-sitting, automated gizmo you just spent a gazillion dollars on. No matter how big or small the investment is, maximizing a tool’s effectiveness requires planning, training and a commitment at all levels of the organization that it will be embraced.
TIP: Write down all the new tools and/or technology your organization invested in the last three years and assess the success of the implementation. Are you still using the tool? Why or why not? Did it live up to the great expectations of efficiency, automation and productivity?
TIP: The next time you’re planning a new tool implementation, ask your account rep if you can talk to a product developer and ask him/her how to best prepare for the integration. They’ll know best; they built it.
REALITY 4 – Embrace “Test, Measure, Learn” Methodology
So many organizations work from the gut. Big or small, anecdotal evidence far outweighs actual data when strategic decisions like budget, marketing mix, competition and key market opportunities are made. With an encyclopedia of best practices and competitive intel within a few keystrokes on Google, how can this be? With unbelievable analytics available for FREE (again, thanks to Google), how can this be? With pay-per-click and hyper-targeting advertising tools (I’ll give this one to Facebook), how can this be? I will proffer that it’s because we’re doing more with less, we’re expecting people with the wrong skill sets to synthesize the information available, and we aren’t fully leveraging our technology and the reporting of data that comes with it (see Realities 1, 2 and 3 above).
With a marketer’s dream of information and intelligence in hand, make the following resolutions for your strategic team:
- Establish KPIs (key performance indicators) for your business goals
- Develop a test-and-learn environment where you can measure success and failure, and then adjust for more success
- Commit to quarterly evaluation of KPIs with your key team
- Look very critically at your existing business model and marketing mix – does it need some modernizing