Mack was recently asked to speak at C3 2014, a marketing conference hosted by Conductor.
It’s not a surprise to us that they requested that she speak on the topic of community. Our Truly Monumental Guide to Building Online Communities made quite a splash when we launched it a year ago and Mack (and, consequently, the whole Mack Web Team) is well-known for being passionate on this topic.
Never one to disappoint, Mack did talk about community. In fact, her talk was called “Growing Your Business Through Community and Integrated Marketing.” (See, community is in the title and everything.) But, in true Mack Web fashion, she didn’t focus on fuzzy or fluffy talk of singing Kumbaya and/or bribing people to be your friends. She came out with a practical, actionable approach and process for building the necessary groundwork to grow an authentic community.
In other words: building a better business, one soul-searching, thought-provoking, hard-working step at a time.
But if you’re in a hurry, keep reading for the highlights.
Building a community is how you perform well online. Building a better business is how you attract a community.
Community is what you need to make your marketing sing: actual human people sharing and disseminating your content, promoting your brand, buying and recommending your stuff, both online and in person.
You attract people by building a better business from the inside out. You find something authentic and meaningful at the core of your company and build your business around that. You don’t have to be perfect, but you do have to be real. That special something is what will draw your audience near and give them something to tell their friends about you.
Sustainable marketing results demand an integrated marketing strategy.
An integrated approach means you build a cross-channel marketing experience which will attract both the right people and revenue. It means that no matter where a consumer comes in contact with your brand (on- or offline), you’re living up to (or exceeding) their expectations.
An integrated process is an agile way to create and maintain momentum in your marketing efforts. It puts the focus on accomplishing real-world goals so that you’re doing the right things (not just the shiny things) to move your business forward.
Integrated results look at the what all of your channels have achieved together, not just individually, over the long-haul. These results are an indication that you’re doing the right things in the short term to accomplish the big things in the long-term.
Your integrated marketing strategy starts with who you are and what you want to achieve.
Before you do anything else, figure out your company’s meaning: why, beyond making money, does your company exist? What is your authentic passion? This is how you will form a meaningful connection with your audience.
Then figure out your goals; they will drive everything else you do. (These are goals for your whole business, not just your marketing, by the way.) There are three levels: visionary, business & brand, and campaign goals. Your campaign goals help you achieve your business & brand goals which, in turn, feed into your big, overarching visionary goal.
Once you know what you want to accomplish, it’s time for action.
Start your 90-day integrated marketing strategy cycle by figuring out what is most important. What needs to be done first to set out towards your business & brand and visionary goals? Look at your audience, the current state of your brand, your strengths and weaknesses, and how you match up to the competition.
When you know what your priorities are, start planning tactical campaigns to reach them. And this is where that word “integrated” really comes into play. Make sure you’re looking at all channels (content, search, social media, email, outreach), at efforts both on- and offline.
Then, y’know, do the stuff.
Build agility into the process and factor momentum into your planning.
Be prepared to assess every 30 days and change direction as needed. Measurement is not enough. You must be prepared to respond with action.
At 60 days, start looking forward: what is your next 90-day strategy going to hold? What are your priorities? How is your progress toward those goals of yours? By the time your first 90 days are up, you’re ready for the next. And you’re not starting from scratch. You’re simply continuing the momentum you’ve got going.
Sorry, kids. We’re in it for the long haul.
An integrated marketing strategy can deliver amazing results, but it takes time, it takes one-on-one effort, it takes passion, and it takes authenticity.
More to Come
As part of mastering this process, you’ll need to understand how to effectively communicate the value of an integrated approach. Mack continues the conversation with her presentation from SearchLove London: The Measurement Behind Your Integrated Marketing Strategy.
Hungry for more? Never fear: the idea of an integrated marketing strategy for building a better business as a true, sustainable method for growing an online community is something Mack Web will be talking about more and more in the coming days.
Curious? Want more? You should definitely sign up for our e-news so that any updates will come directly to you. (It’s super easy.)
You could also download the infamous guide itself and find out more that way.
What do you think?