Brand image is never more important than during periods of economic uncertainty. When times are tough, customers, investors and the wider general public often turn to companies that are consistent, able to deliver, and have values aligned with their own.
It stands to reason, therefore, that businesses have found themselves under increased pressure to define who they are and what they stand for. At a time when everyone is struggling, having a clear and positive brand image can help an organisation to stand out from its competitors and attract new prospects.
At the heart of creating and maintaining a positive brand image is the marketing department. From defining and managing the overall company image, to developing and executing relevant and timely campaigns, it is the responsibility of these employees to proactively influence what people think, and say, about a company. Each and every project needs to be a success and deliver a noticeable return on investment, now so more than ever. Here are a few new technologies marketers can leverage to get ahead in 2021.
Doing more with less (and with analytics)
Over the last year, growing expectations have been met with shrinking budgets for marketers. Industry-wide cut-backs have resulted in a dramatic decrease in spending, with over 41% of UK firms reducing marketing budgets in the third quarter of 2020 as a direct result of the pandemic. Unfortunately, this is something that is set to continue as the UK’s economy struggles to get back on its feet in 2021 and beyond.
Despite finances being tight and resources being scarce, marketing teams must continue to deliver high impact, multi-channel campaigns that truly speak to their audiences. They need to ensure that every project runs smoothly and delivers the desired results. After all, with such small margins, there is very little room for error.
Achieving full visibility across all activities has never been more important – especially in our new remote working landscape where many teams have found themselves dispersed across the country. This is where real-time performance metrics can help. With thousands of ad, email, and social campaigns to manage simultaneously, operating on information that is outdated – even if only by a day or so – can have a profound impact on the final outcome of a project. The right performance metrics can enable marketers to track and obtain a deeper understanding of how campaigns are progressing and delivering against the set objectives.
When utilised alongside the right modern technologies, these performance metrics can even help marketers to save projects that aren’t delivering, flagging potential problems, and recommending where adjustments should be made.
Mitigating risk and saving projects
There are many different reasons a project could be derailed. Additional costs, missed deadlines, lack of collaboration between teams – the list is never ending. In order to meet any potential roadblocks head on and lessen their potentially negative impact, marketing teams need to be able to plan for a series of different outcomes from the onset.
This is where modern technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), come in. They can help marketers predict future problems and tackle at-risk projects early on. Through identifying signals and patterns based on hundreds of factors related to past campaign results, work progress, organisation history, and work complexity, these technologies can provide early diagnosis for potential issues and make recommendations for timely remediation.
With intelligent insights at hand and any possible threats being automatically detected and flagged by these technologies, marketing teams can concentrate on what really matters – managing and mitigating any risks. This can be done by assessing a project’s ‘risk tolerance’. Put simply, how much risk can you allow before you need to act. This is an essential part of any project management process, helping marketers decide on the most effective response and ensuring that resources are being used in the best way.
As we continue to face new challenges, no one can know what lies ahead. However, one thing we can be sure of is that the ability to connect with desired audiences through consistent brand image, strong messaging and high impact campaigns will continue to play a key role in overall business strategy moving forward. As such, marketing teams need to ensure that all projects stay on track and risk is at an all-time low. Whilst the future is uncertain, real-time insights alongside AI and ML technologies can help to put marketers on the front foot, enabling them to assess and mitigate any potential risks before they become a problem.