What Is A Modern Global Marketing Organization?

Here's A Hint: It's Digital

By Published on .

Freddie Laker
Freddie Laker
Does "tweeting" mean you've figured it out? Does knowing how to "friend" someone qualify you as a modern marketer of the new advertising age? Hardly. In fact, reaching that lofty goal is less about the tactics we employ, and more about our overall approach to the complexities of the modern consumer.

Our jobs are becoming more demanding. Big businesses now operate in a multi-market, multi-lingual, and frequently multi-brand world. A world filled with commercial and cultural nuances. The modern marketers I respect are finding ways to address these nuances by developing cross-market and cross-brand efficiencies. They're fostering smarter collaboration across teams, agencies, and disciplines, producing big brand ideas that transcend tactical executions and work in markets of varying sophistication, and they're leveraging their scale to lower costs while focusing their marketing dollars in the right growth areas. All while producing great work.

My personal fascination lies in the fact that digital marketing -- and at a minimum Internet based technology -- is helping to drive this evolution. Digital marketing is at different stages depending on which markets you are working in around the globe. But in almost all instances, it seems to function as the great connector that helps to bring cross-channel experiences to the consumer.

Digital, once deemed complex and expensive by the rest of the advertising world, actually offers the ability to produce re-usable libraries of common tools that can be shared across markets and brands, empowering them to focus their budgets on brilliant creative ideas instead of unnecessary technology that had been used multiples times in the last year by other agencies and brand teams.

Social media monitoring tools can be set up for enterprise businesses and deliver intelligence to multiple brands across multiple markets at reduced costs while facilitating a deeper understanding of the consumer. Web based collaboration tools are helping to produce better ideas, faster, with equal input from brand agencies, digital agencies, and media agencies.

I'm not discrediting the importance of innovation. I'm the world's worst culprit for loving new exciting platforms in digital marketing. I just think we need to step back and reevaluate what makes us pat someone on the back for being in a "digital master class" that understands modern marketing. Some of the biggest companies in the world who frequently get accused of being laggards are realizing how scale and digital marketing play VERY well together, and could form the cement in their global marketing initiatives.

In the end, modern marketers are putting their money where there mouth is and, as a result, giving their agencies what amounts to a thinly veiled, but no less justifiable ultimatum: show us results, the analytics to support them, and develop creative in a cost effective way, or we'll find someone who can. We should all heed the warning. Those who don't? Well, then they don't know "tweet" about modern marketing.

Freddie Laker is director of digital strategy at Sapient. He has also founded the Society of Digital Agencies, a collective of notable digital agencies focused on thought leadership and positive industry change, and blogs at takemetoyourleader.com.
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