What the Heck is Connected Marketing?

Connected marketing isn't a new term; in fact it's been around for decades, historically used to describe word-of-mouth advertising, building awareness, and generating interest in products and services through social interaction.

How fitting that today on Day 1 of SES San Francisco, which this year is part of Connected Marketing Week, we're redefining "connected marketing" as a strategy integrating conceivably disparate marketing tactics such as: offline advertising, paid search, search engine optimization (SEO), social media, testing, and mobile.

First, we need to accept that all marketing tactics will influence each other in some way, shape or form. But what makes "connecting" marketing possible?

Platforms, processes, and people are the engine that drives the measurement, analysis, optimization, and communication of tactical interactions that affect conversion. In many cases, the impact of any one marketing tactic on another may not be an equivalent give/take relationship.

Consider the following a personal critique of marketing interactions as they appear today:

Marketing Interaction

The way to read this chart goes something like this: "Offline advertising (column header) has a very strong impact on social media (row label)." Although this table somewhat ambiguous, it provides a framework for testing my assumptions through measurement of complex interactions between some of my favorite marketing tactics.

Establishing measurement is critically important. To formulate a personalized chart just like this one for your own marketing efforts, you need to be able to measure marketing tactics effectively.

Earn that black belt in analytics by correlating conversion metrics (leads, orders, revenue) or engagement metrics (time on site, bounce rate, shares/retweets per thousand followers, etc.) within each cell of the table, and test changes in budgets or efforts over time.

For example, do you know what would happen to revenue attributed to all your other marketing tactics if you reduced your paid search budget by 10 percent? It's OK if you don't know the answer yet.

What I hope to take away from Connecting Marketing Week relates back to the assumptions in my table. I'll be looking forward to:

  • Discussions exposing the extremely hot love triangle between social media, mobile, and search. All three of these have a tremendous influence over each other.
  • Potential impact of testing to promote conversion on expensive tactics such as offline advertising or paid search, and an increasing reliance on testing to optimize content development for SEO and potential messaging in social media.
  • Arguments over whether (one day) the impact of each of these marketing tactics will be equalized.

That's what (the heck) connected marketing is, my friends, so take in all Connected Marketing Week has to offer. Now is the perfect time to find out from those that have the creativity to test, curiosity to ask why, determination to provide insight, and the generosity to share their experience with others.