Category Archives: organizational transformation

Data Utilization Maturity

“Big Data” is an ambiguous term. Sometimes it refers to data volume, sometimes to data variety, and sometimes to data velocity. All organizations have data collection challenges on at least one of these fronts if not more. But even where these challenges are being overcome through technology, the next challenge is in advancing the use of that data for marketing beyond the “Descriptive” level of data utilization.


Most digital marketing organizations with “Analytics” functions are really only focused on descriptive performance analytics, and hopefully also to some extent the diagnostics that explain performance. More advanced digital marketing teams have managed to pass along their data to market research and consumer insights teams to have digital data included in consumer research, insights and segmentation work. Continue reading

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Overlapping Disciplines for Digital Marketing

I frequently use this space to write about the dangers and downfalls of organizational silos. As we move into 2013, I thought it might be useful to share a visualization of at least one way that digital marketing organizations could more effectively be structured to deliver against the multiple considerations required for effective digital experience delivery.

At the center of this structure are the drivers of digital marketing: consumer behaviors, organizational operations, consumer attitudes, the competitive landscape and organizational objectives. The order given in this diagram is indicative of influences across these drivers; corporate operations shape consumer attitudes, attitudes shape the competitive landscape, competition shapes objectives, and objectives determine the types of experiences consumers may have with a company, and thus shape behavior. And of course, behaviors (i.e leads, purchases, referrals, complaints) determines the resources with which a company can operate – closing the loop.

The next circle out shows the disciplines that a digital marketing organization can use to understand what’s happening in the inner circle; the Analytics and Research disciplines. Research is the older and more established marketing discipline, helping to align organizational operations and objectives (i.e. through marketing mix modeling), evaluating attitudes through panels, surveys and focus groups, and evaluating the competitive landscape through survey and 3rd party data sources. Continue reading

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Social Media and Marketing: Evolution Not Revolution… Part II

The first part of this blog on social media and marketing arrived at the observation that questioning the value of social media to your business is fine, but not bothering to look for an answer will be deadly.

Most businesses now understand that they cannot chose to ignore the question of how engagement in social media can benefit their business, so the search for an answer as to how this will work for them is now underway at most firms. Continue reading

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Social Media for Enterprise – Value-adding Practices

Even the best general models don’t solve specific problems of practice, but they should be useful in guiding thinking around specific problems. This particular model proposes a standard path for building value from social media practices within organizations.

Each of the practices has inherent value for particular organizational problems of practice, and each additional practice draws value from the successful presence of preceding practices. The specific value of each of these practices to a particular organization will depend on many factors including organizational readiness & adaptability, product offerings and market environment, all of which must be considered when building solutions in each area.

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Social Media Activity, Intelligence and Outcomes

Was looking for a very simple way to represent complex process of interwoven activity, intelligence and outcomes. What do you think? Please share comments.

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Commanding Communities?

Communities, and community organizations, arise around common needs, values and objectives. A community is a community (as opposed to just a group or place or list) because its members share a common vision, values and voice. The strength of a community comes from the extent to which its members are invested in this shared vision and in their common objectives, the authenticity of their commitment, and the degree to which they participate in actions based on shared beliefs.

Any discussion of online community should of course look to ‘The Cluetrain Manifesto’ for guidance. The management approach in ‘The Cluetrain Manifesto’ is radical, to say the least. It suggests that to thrive in a customer-centered world, managers must hand over the reins, stop trying to steer the corporate message, and allow the collective voices of all of the organization’s members to interact with the collective voice of the organization’s other stakeholders.

Handing over the reins is an excellent idea if your company is truly a community, with members (staff) who share a common vision and values. If, however, your organization is like many, there may be a fear within management of exposing the voices of people who might get “off message”. Unfortunately, this leads to management feeling compelled to try and control all speech emanating from the firm, resulting in a continuing command and control approach to communications. Continue reading

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