By teaming up with a digital marketing partner, organisations can outsource a lot of tasks and in turn increase return on investment (ROI), says Dan Smith, Head of Integrated Marketing for the MEA region at Xerox.

Customisation is king

New communications tools and technologies are opening the door to even more personalisation and customisation. For example, the explosion of social media impacts not only how we reach our customers, but also how we help them conduct business and communicate with their customers. Web 2.0 developments are creating many new ways to exchange ideas, share content and measure effectiveness.

One way to get started is to think like a customer. Reflect on the amount of information you receive every day. Now, how does a company cut through that clutter and make a connection with the customer? By getting personal.

Analysing client data from in-house systems, company websites, marketing and sales campaigns and strategic initiatives can be a daunting task. A partner with the right analytical skills and tools can offer a single source for data mining and determine the communications channels that are most appropriate for a target market. Even better, an experienced provider can help develop the most effective creative imagery, messaging and targets for marketing outreach.

The tourism organisation for British Columbia created 5,000 vacation guides personalised to individual interests, budgets and starting locations. By eliminating information that was irrelevant to the recipients, the total number of pages for each brochure was reduced from 112 to 24. Recipients appreciated the courtesy of customisation, mailing costs dropped 145%, and ROI increased 25%.

Maximising the budget

Outsourcing can help reduce operational costs without interrupting revenue generation or customer satisfaction. Marketing automation technologies can help make the most of budgets for the long term, while allowing the flexibility to make short-term tactical decisions.

Time, money and materials comprise big investments in marketing campaigns. But, they all go to waste if the campaign is ineffective, and the campaign is ineffective if only a small percentage of the audience cared about the communication. Teaming with a marketing partner to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of everything you do – from your printed materials or digital communications, to your statements and invoices – reduces production and delivery costs and eliminates waste.

An effective campaign generates measurable business improvements in cycle times, it heightens demand/response, lowers costs per lead and, most importantly, delivers a stronger marketing ROI.

In addition to helping you design and implement an effective campaign, an outsourcing partner will measure how well a campaign is working and help determine where exactly it needs refinement along the way. Automated collection and delivery

Dan Smith

of data via reports, dashboards, and analytics enable marketers to easily and scientifically test concepts and monitor live campaign results. This also allows marketers to experiment with offers, messaging and creative concepts before launching to a larger targeted population, ensuring resonance with specific audiences. Throughout the campaign, performance can be analysed and adjustments can be made “on-the-fly” for successful results.

About

Dan Smith is Head of Integrated Marketing for the Middle East and Africa region of Xerox’s Developing Markets Operations. He was appointed to this position in August 2008 and is based in the UK.

He  manages all facets of marketing – including channel communications, product marketing support, demand generation programs, electronic and e-marketing initiatives – for the Xerox lines of business in more than 70 countries comprising the Middle East and Africa region.

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