Tips On Structuring Tomorrow's Search Marketing Department

The next version of the marketing department will require a multichannel strategist to lead the company in creating content, and a team supporting analytics and attribution. The brand will need to build best practices and a technology infrastructure supporting metrics and business processes. A white paper from Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and Winterberry Group provides the outline defining how marketers and publishers can capitalize on multichannel marketing. It also provides a guideline for search marketers.

The white paper, Taking Cues From the Customer: Omnichannel and the Drive For Audience Engagement, calls it an "omnichannel" approach, but search marketers should think of campaigns as connecting across PC, mobile, Internet-connected television and offline channels to social, display and video campaigns. One media feeds off another. This makes it easier to understand and realize the impact of all these experiences on everyday decisions, including colors and word choice. Along with these fundamentals, technology provides the numbers to confirm the processes.

The approach of "omnichannel" borrows from several disciplines like multichannel marketing, customer experience management, and the need to coordinate the content and timing of messaging across channels. It takes technology from companies like Webtrends, which in May launched a platform called Optimize. The technology predicts consumer behavior and analyzes the time spent on every page or the pages the site visitor viewed. Knowing that information allows the Web site, brand or publisher to customize the content served.

The white paper does not provide search marketers with tips on restructuring tomorrow's search marketing department, but it does provide the framework.

1) Plan, execute and optimize. These basic elements create a successful business strategy for any media.

2) People, processes, platforms and partners. These "4Ps" not only support IAB's vision of "omnichannel" marketing, but marketing media in general.

Here are some stats from the survey that supports the white paper's thesis. When asked to name inhibitors that impede omnichannel improvements, 58% of marketers participating in the survey ranked the lack of tools and technologies No. 1, followed by internal processes and marketing ops challenges at No. 2 -- about 47%.

The basic concepts should work to improve paid-search ads, as well as optimizing sites and campaigns. The idea of keeping consumers more informed requires content that guides potential customers into making the correct decision, as well as moving away from looking for daily tactical results and more toward building long-term business processes, incentive structures and supporting toolsets. These attributes remain the structure of mature business tactics, rather than a passing fad.

The IAB white paper supports results from a survey of more than 120 senior executives from marketers, agencies, publishers, technology developers and solution providers from Cardlytics, CBS Interactive, Condé Nast, Gap, Global Hotel Alliance, MDC Partners, MediaShift, nFusion, Pandora Media, Points, PopSugar, Splice Software, UM, Volkswagen of America and others.

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1 comment about "Tips On Structuring Tomorrow's Search Marketing Department".
  1. Tom Pick from KC Associates , June 11, 2013 at 10:42 a.m.
    This is why web presence optimization (WPO) is needed. Only by coordinating the efforts of PR, SEO, content, online advertising and social pros (or whatever we choose to call these people under the "new" search marketing department) can firms both maximize online visibility and present a consistent message to prospective buyers across channels.