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The Future of Digital Marketing

Econsultancy Q&A: The Future of Digital Marketing


Following the award nomination for our animation ‘The Abandoned Toys’, Econsultancy caught up with Head of Marketing Chris Sheen to find out what made him dig out his toy box for SaleCycle’s latest video…


Q What do you think really made this project stand out?

A It was fun! B2B marketing can too often fall into the trap of feeling corporate and a touch tired compared to it’s B2C counterpart, and we wanted to do something that showed our fun side while illustrating the secrets to success in what we do.


Q How do you build the perfect team?

A For me it comes down to two things: communication and ownership. Everyone in the team needs to understand the end goal; they need to be able to talk openly and honestly without being judged; and they need to feel they have ownership and accountability for whatever their responsibilities they have – there’s no greater motivator than knowing a certain part is ‘your baby’.


Q Which campaigns have you seen recently that are defining the digital marketing landscape?

A I’m a big fan of the TV advertising behind Adobe’s Marketing Cloud (below); seeing B2B marketing in the public domain is really refreshing and they’ve done a great job of using humour to illustrate the seriousness of what they offer.
I also think the job the guys at Exact Target (Salesforce) have done in producing 15 seconds tips videos is very much where the marketing landscape is at the moment in demanding short form content.


Q What business sectors do you see excelling at digital marketing at the moment?

A We work with a lot of great fashion brands and I think it’s full of companies willing to try new things and experiment with ideas to stay at the forefront of what they do. A seasonal focus on sales means there is a hunger for new ideas every three months and it makes it an exciting industry to be able to work in.


Q Marketing is becoming more and more data and technology driven, how can marketers ensure the right balance between creative thinking and scientific marketing?

A For me, nothing has really changed – it’s just become easier to do the stuff we’ve always wanted to. Marketers and advertisers have always wanted to show the right message, to the right person at the right time – but now we actually can.
It’s easy to get bogged down in data, but if you think of the customer first and message second, then the data (and tech) becomes purely a facilitator as it should be.


Q What do you see as being the biggest digital trend of 2014?

A Video! There’s a reason we produced an animation and that’s the hunger for video content… We consistently see more clicks for video content on emails, social media and targeting advertising than we do any other form of content and as it’s becomes an easier and increasingly more affordable form of content then I can’t see this slowing down any time soon.


Q What are the core elements of inspiration to be found in marketing?

A Inspiration is everywhere. It can be something you’ve seen in a movie, from a great book you’ve read or a story you’ve heard in the pub… the truly creative marketers tend to be the ones who are able to interpret small elements of day-to-day interaction and turn them into a marketing campaign idea.
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Q How should companies be defining and measuring digital excellence?

A Most companies are have adopted or are moving towards a content central approach and I think this is right. The vital thing now is to focus on quality and originality.
How one defines and measures the excellence depends on the type of content (is it aimed purely hitting the biggest audience possible or focused on getting conversions?), but either way there are plenty of awesome technologies out there to allow you to put data behind your content.


Q What inspired you to enter The Digitals this year?

A We genuinely do love what we do and wanted to share something we were really proud of producing.
The fact it was a genuine team effort that started with a small acorn of an idea and has turned into something shortlisted for The Digitals is pretty special but winning the award would mean the world to all the team behind the campaign and be a great credit for all our hard work and late nights!


Not seen The Abandoned Toys yet? Click below to watch it now!
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