Amid panels and sessions focusing on big data, ROI, mobile strategies, and the like at this week’s Financial Times “Future of Marketing Summit” in New York City, McKinsey & Company principal David Edelman reminded the 150-plus attendees that successfully building a brand in the digital age goes well beyond having the right social media campaign or a glitzy Web site.
None of that matters if brands don’t understand and shape the “new customer journey” and align the business to properly deal with it.
In the presentation “Restructuring Your Organization for the Digital Age,” Edelman showed the new customer journey looking like this:
To take advantage of this new paradigm, companies must take advantage of data, design, and delivery, he said. Brands must use data to discover new opportunities and to find out more about customer needs. The design portion enables staging a new kind of experience for the customer—where should the journey lead? Finally, delivery is about the right message or opportunity, which, Edelman cautioned, is not easy—there is much orchestration involved—and a company’s C-level must understand all of these elements, and not just the marketing part.
To do all this, Edelman said, most companies are going to have to force deep organizational changes in six main areas:
1. Cross-functional alignment: All top executives must be aligned in thinking about what it means to be a digital company.
2. Coordination and project management support: All company managers and agencies must be coordinated in their digital thinking and on the same page.
3. Talent development and recruiting: Building skills internally is imperative, but so is creating a company environment that top people want to come to.
4. Budgeting: CMOs must know where the money for digital is going to come from, knowing what percentage of that budget can be measured for ROI.
5. Targeting, testing and learning: Determining what percentage of customer interaction is based on real information is key so these can be tested over time.
6. Agility: Know how much budget is locked in versus what can be moved quickly so strategies can shift and change over time, based on performance.
If a company is not thinking about these things, Edelman said, then it is not going to be able to do digital marketing well. Enterprises, he concluded, must take a fresh look at how to “lead from the center” because this new customer journey is a key part of what the brand is all about.