Marketing strategy tends to get most of the press. However, it turns out that many of the best gains have actually been made in marketing operations. But what’s the real difference? If you are involved in producing an event or a campaign, then you are in operations.
The digital customer’s journey now requires marketing operations teams to engage effectively with sales, customer service and product development. To do this, you need to look at the four forces of marketing operations and technology.
These four forces are balanced along two axes:
- Centralisation vs. decentralisation: the balance between scale and speed
Centralising processes, data and tools across the organisation can achieve economies of scale and consistent messaging and customer experience. However, this needs to be balanced with the ability to respond effectively, appropriately, and quickly to customers on a local and individual basis.
- Humanisation vs. automation: the balance between people and technology
Automating drives efficiency and speed. It harnesses technology to deliver a more consistent customer experience, faster and more efficiently. However, it needs to be balanced with a human approach that recognises that customer experience is about more than just speed and efficiency.
When you automate and centralise, you get efficiency. When you automate and decentralise, you get innovation. By combining centralising and humanising, you can focus on the brand, and when you humanise and decentralise, you will get a focus on individual customers, and authenticity.
The art of modern marketing operations is to balance those four forces.