15 Big Themes For The 2019 NZ Marketing Whiteboard

whiteboard

  1. We really do need to save the planet now – with genuine alternatives like electric vehicles and without old habits like single-use plastic.
  2. Digital transformation marches on– but in many organisations, it can be a bumpy journey with conceptual disconnects and slow-to-adapt people and systems
  3. Mainstreaming of technology building blocks – marketing automation, AI, bots, voice assistants, VR/AR…
  4. A newly minted government – it used to be ‘justify why you need to spend’, and now it is more a case of ‘what are you investing in to do the job?’
  5. Big tactics, skinny strategy – lots of short-term initiatives in the marketplace, with less attention to long-term strategy (I recommend you read ‘Why aren’t we doing this? care of the Commercial Communications Council)
  6. Swelling in-house teams– with DIY e-commerce, marketing automation, social media and design. But as with home DIY it does vary in quality.
  7. The digital deluge – if you thought traditional media advertising created discontent, the digital world has taken interruption to a new high/low.
  8. Losing Facebook – the giant has slipped in terms of trust and confidence, with young people especially departing in large numbers.
  9. Influencers are the names with the numbers – social media stars with lots of followers are becoming go-to media options.
  10. Shopping events – Black Friday is now a bigger shopping event than Boxing Day and Singles’ Day is the world’s biggest at USD 30 billion.
  11. Authenticity – the antidote to fake news and marketing hyperbole and a must-have for Gen Z. Reviews have replaced ads as the selection driver in many categories.
  12. Personalisation – tools like marketing automation and AI are enabling the next level of direct marketing.
  13. Privacy – the flipside of personalisation -an increasing issue for modern marketing practices.
  14. New ways to pay – we’re seeing a rash of new payment platforms emerging, most of them channelled through our mobiles.
  15. Gen Z – move over Millennials, there are new kids entering the workforce.

What others would you add?

Visit headlight.co.nz

 

The 3 biggest problems with in-house agencies

OKGUY SMALL

The rise of in-house agencies is certainly one of the biggest changes within the marketing world over the past few years.  In-house teams are brought together usually to run digital marketing programmes, or design work, or social media.
The business case for an in-house agency is typically a mix of:
  • Focus & attention – no agency can know or care as much as we do about our business.
  • Greater agility – being always on they make businesses more responsive.
  • Managing the digital engine – having the core drivers of direct e-commerce owned and managed in-house.
  • Cost savings – shedding the cost of external agencies in favour of internal teams.
  • Because others are doing it – in-house teams are in vogue and seen as the modern way to go.
There are many companies that operate a mixed model of some in-house, supplemented by external specialists.
While some in-house agencies operate very effectively, there are some problems that are all too common.
Three big ones are:
  1. Ready, fire, aim
    This is when companies are looking for short-term wins, but end up delivering short-term whims that lack strategic purpose or cohesion. Having the means of production at hand can make it too tempting to execute before thinking it through.
    The risk is inconsistency, a lack of relevance, confusion and a dilution of brand strength.
  2. Cars with no petrol
    This is when the creation of in-house capability is a mask for reducing the marketing budget. It can become an excuse for minimising marketing effort.
    The risk is an erosion of brand health through underinvestment.
  3. Drinking our own Kool-Aid
    This is when companies limit their activity to only what they do in-house. An internal focus without debate and the stretch of strategic and creative interpretation can lead to companies limiting the scope and quality of what they do.
    The risk is weak marketing and communications, resulting from limited strategic, creative or technical crafting.
Headlight works with a number of in-house teams, providing expert strategic direction, problem solving and insights to help clients get the best from their marketing investment.
Please get in touch for a chat if you need help with your in-house team.

Clients doing it in-house

small_diy
One of the big trends at the moment is client companies building their own in-house agencies, or at least taking on things they previously outsourced.
Mark Pritchard, CMO for P&G recently mapped out their plans for a DIY agency approach at Cannes. In particular, he points to digital media wastage as the main problem.
He claims… “We’re reinventing media from mass blast to mass one-to-one, we’re getting advertising from less push to more pull, we’re reinventing agency partnerships from less outsourcing to more of our people’s hands on the keyboard.”
(read more here)
This is a phenomenon that’s been growing for a while now with more and more design studios, social media, and digital marketing teams emerging in-house.
Having seen quite a few of these in action, there is no right answer. Some clients are saving costs and delivering effective work. But others are struggling for quality in what they do, and lack creative impact and strategic insight – satisfying themselves without the benefit of professional expertise.
A while ago I wrote an agency selection best practice guide for the 3Cs and ANZA called “Navigating the agency selection process” (have a look here). In it there is a section that maps out different agency/outsource models and their implications, including in-house alternatives. I recommend you have a read if you’re contemplating going in-house. And if you’re not sure, get in touch for a chat (lew.bentley@headlight.co.nz)

 

 

 

The 3 things that usually get stuffed up when it comes to communicating change

change
These days most organizations seem to be locked into a never-ending spiral of change management.
By definition, change can be very disruptive to a team culture and how well it performs. It is almost always a nightmare for management.
Change can cure or kill.
If your goal is to introduce change and get employees adapt to it, there are three things that go wrong most often.
  1. Not targeting the most influential people.
  2. Using communication channels that are convenient rather than effective.
  3. Focusing on the wrong content.
Here is a brief summary of a great book on successfully communicating organizational change.
You can find more articles of interest here.