Media Companies Must Manage Customer Experience To Survive

Kurt Kyle

We are living in an era where there has never been so much content available. The Web and mobile devices have made it possible to deliver content just about anywhere. New retailers and media companies have many content options available for people, whether they are business users or consumers.

Let’s talk about a few media areas:

  • Information publishing (Dow Jones, Bloomberg, Thomson Reuters)
  • Educational publishing
  • Entertainment (TV, video, and film)
  • News outlets and magazines

Traditionally we have sold media products to consumers through retailers and sold professional products in business-to-business channels through a sales team. We haven’t known much about the individual product user and have used a lot of mass-market advertising to reach buyers. But this model is changing rapidly.

How are things changing?

  • People used to have to come to publishers for curation and delivery of information. Now published information is abundant in free, register-to-read, and subscription models.
  • Educational materials used to be only available at schools and a few small resellers. Now materials are available through schools, libraries, online sites, and low-cost consumer apps.
  • In entertainment, we are in the middle of “peak TV,” with multiple online services and an escalating number of major movie releases, while audiences are consolidating market share to just a few titles. Consider that 25% of total box office sales went to just five films in 2016, according to Doug Cruetz of Cowen and Company in the report “Another Memo to Hollywood. Prediction? Pain.” This is up from 19% in 2012 and a rough average of 16% from 2001 to 2014. Consumers are going out to the biggest movies and staying home to watch streaming services.
  • News has been thoroughly disaggregated by online news sites replacing traditional news bureaus, but local news is still surviving and thriving via websites and some apps.
  • Magazines with high-value audiences have made the transition to apps.

What is different today is that most customers use the Internet to research, buy, and consume. We can use many methods to observe and understand our customers and prospects when they interact with us. Web and mobile channels really do offer us a new opportunity to understand customers.

How well do you know your customers?

To really know the customer, a media company needs to:

  • Identify and remember the customer
  • Market to the customer based on their likes and past behavior
  • Provide instant product information everywhere
  • Make tailored offers during the online and mobile experience
  • Process the customer order instantly and offer service as good as or better than other popular sites

No matter what type of media company you have, today customers can find enough similar products that they can be happy without you. A media company has to proactively market to and manage the customer experience. A media company needs to treat customers as individuals and create a trusted relationship.

Media companies have to bring their products to customers before the competition does. If they rely on mass media advertising, they put themselves in a race with competitors to see who can outspend each other. Media companies need to manage the customer experience to survive and thrive.

Read more about how companies are transforming the customer experience.

Learn how to embrace digital disruption to drive your business forward and engage more profitably with customers in “Technology and the CMO in the Digital Era.”

Learn more about available Omni-Channel Commerce Solutions for Media and Entertainment.

See how the digital era is affecting the overall business environment in the SAP eBook “The Digital Economy: Reinventing the Business World.”

Discover the driving forces behind digital transformation in the SAP eBook “Digital Disruption: How Digital Technology is Transforming Our World.

Comments

Kurt Kyle

About Kurt Kyle

Kurt Kyle has been a technologist and consultant in the Media Industry for 25 years. He has participated in projects from the digitization of Media production, digital post production, eCommerce for Media, and data driven marketing. Prior to IBM he worked at HP, SAP, and Oracle along with being the General Manager of AmberFin in North America.

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

Daniel Schmid

About Daniel Schmid

Daniel Schmid was appointed Chief Sustainability Officer at SAP in 2014. Since 2008 he has been engaged in transforming SAP into a role model of a sustainable organization, establishing mid and long term sustainability targets. Linking non-financial and financial performance are key achievements of Daniel and his team.

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

Michael Laprocido

About Michael Laprocido

Mike Laprocido serves as a Strategic Industry Advisor for SAP. He is responsible for developing thought leadership and driving SAP solution adoption in the chemical and oil and gas industries. With over three decades in various executive roles at BP Oil, BP Chemicals, Kuraray America, Panda Energy and IBM prior to joining SAP, Mike has gained a broad and deep industry knowledge base that he leverages to help his clients to innovate and transform their business through the application of digital technology.

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

Joerg Koesters

About Joerg Koesters

Joerg Koesters is the Head of Retail Marketing and Communication at SAP. He is a Technology Marketing executive with 20 years of experience in Marketing, Sales and Consulting, Joerg has deep knowledge in retail and consumer products having worked both in the industry and in the technology sector.

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

Rob Meikle

About Rob Meikle

Rob Meikle is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the City of Toronto, Canada's largest city, sixth largest government and home to a diverse population of about 2.7 million people.

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

Jason Bloomberg

About Jason Bloomberg

Jason Bloomberg is a leading IT industry analyst, Forbes contributor, keynote speaker, and globally recognized expert on multiple disruptive trends in enterprise technology and digital transformation. He is founder and president of the agile digital transformation analyst firm Intellyx. He is ranked #5 on Onalytica’s list of top digital transformation influencers for 2018 and #15 on Jax’s list of top DevOps influencers for 2017, the only person to appear on both lists. Mr. Bloomberg is the author or coauthor of four books, including The Agile Architecture Revolution (Wiley, 2013). His next book, Agile Digital Transformation, is due within the next year.

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

Lane Leskela

About Lane Leskela

Lane Leskela, global business development director, Finance and Risk, for SAP, is an accomplished enterprise software leader with years of experience in customer advisory, marketing, market research, and business development. He is an expert in risk and compliance management software functions, solution road maps, implementation strategy, and channel partner management.

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

Jennifer Scholze

About Jennifer Scholze

Jennifer Scholze is the Global Lead for Industry Marketing for the Mill Products and Mining Industries at SAP. She has over 20 years of technology marketing, communications and venture capital experience and lives in the Boston area with her husband and two children.

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

Matt Wilkinson

About Matt Wilkinson

Matt Wilkinson is the General Manager, Consumer Industries for SAP ANZ. Having operational roles in consumer industries organisations combined with 20+ years of professional services in both delivery and sales roles with cloud and on premise solutions, provide him with a unique insight to help organisations achieve effective digital transformation.

5 Tips For Building An Always-On Paid Media Strategy

Travis Teo

campfireThere have been a lot of discussion around “always-on ” for past few months within the B2B marketing community, and how marketers today need to shift from a “campaign” mindset to an “always-on ” mindset – with “always-on ” taking on more prominent role, I would like to share a few thoughts on building an “always-on ” Media strategy. (I shall remove the quotation mark to highlight it’s coming of age.)

To start off, let me illustrate a common practices when we run a typical B2B campaign for demand generation:

  • Webinar campaign: We identify a topic, scouring around for a speaker, and then working with agency on an audience acquisition plan to promote the webinar. The webinar went well with 180 registrants and 120 attendees. Within a day after the webinar, the attendees information are sent over to inside marketing for follow-up and few leads are generated.
  • White paper promotion: We published a white paper on an industry topic. To promote the white paper, we create a gated landing page on a microsite and launch a campaign to promote the white paper, using guarantee cost per acquisition. After running for 1 month, 200 people have downloaded the assets and these contacts are follow up by inside marketing – and as usual, few leads are generated.

The above practices are great way for demand generation. But with little hindsight, there are also limitations.

Using webinar as an example, here are a few:

  • We can’t scale. We need to repeat the whole process each time we conduct a webinar. Speaker need to schedule, eDM need to draft, and audience need to invite, and we can’t invite the same group of audience, and webinar fatigue usually happened soon after.
  • Silent period. In my previous role as Demand Center Lead in China, we had almost 100 webinars per year, which added up to an average of 2–3 webinars per week. But even with this, for each topic – for example, Transportation Management in Supply Chain –  we could only conduct at most twice a year. So what happen to rest of the period? So we were potentially missing big chunk of potential buyers out there in the market looking for a transportation management solution during those silent period.

So here come the always-on  media – also known as media that will always be in there. One of the most well-known always-on  media is owned media: corporate website; managed community; and owned social channels on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. These are great always-on  media. But to promote these channels, it needs to complement with an always-on  paid media.

B2B Companies need an always-on  presence simply because at this moment, there will always be someone out there, at different buying stage, looking for different solution.

Examples of always-on paid media

In fact, most of the media tactics can be in a form of always-on  and doesn’t mean that always-on  paid media will always burn a big hole in the budget.

Here are some media tactics that will form part of always-on paid media:

  • Paid search – Ads are displayed when someone searches by keyword.
  • Ad network through audience buying – Buying based on audience, rather than sites, allow us to drive targeted message in cost effective way.
  • Content syndication on third-party site – Whether a special section on a third-party site, or uploading of contents on third-party repository.
  • Content amplication – Use of paid content network (e.g., Outbrain) to distribute across media publishers.
  • On-demand webinar –Webinars are available 24×7.
  • Third-party sponsorship/brand –Whether an out-of-home banner at the junction of busy street, or a year sponsorship program with Forbes, these medias establish the brand awareness and thought-leadership.

Start building an always-on paid media strategy

Here are 5 tips to set you thinking:

  • Plan a budget that allow long-term and cross categories. One of the most important aspect to build an always-on paid media, is to have a full-visibility of media budget across category and in long term (a year). However, in large organization, we all know this has been the most difficult part as budget came from different budget owners. Planning an always-on budget require discipline and collaboration across categories.
  • Develop a cross-tactics media framework. Ensure key touch points across aforementioned Media tactics are covered.
  • Make all assets available. Having all assets available through is like having a buffet spread: Customers can choose from Italian, French, and Chinese cuisine, whenever they want it.
  • Target audience. Wrong targeting will lead to “indigestion.” How do we really determine showing the right message to the right audience at the right time? Two key points are keep testing and apply mixed of targeting through keywords, content targeting, audience targeting – which lead us to:
  • Optimize like never before. Since your media placements are constantly up there, optimization will be a continuous process. The availability of technology usage allows us to automatic optimization of media performance, in real time. However, that doesn’t mean that we should just “fire and forget”. Constantly checking inbound profiles or registrations captured allow us to validate if we are truly targeting the right audience. And if your objective is demand generation, the pipeline generated says a thousand words.

Is always-on media the holy grail of all paid media? Definitely not. Short burst of media activities are great if we want to create noise in the media space within a period of time, and most suitable if we have specific topic to promote: product launches, events, and more. And there should be a transition of message from a campaign base activity to an always-on media strategy.

As a scout in my youth, one of the key activities I loved was time around the campfire and I would always volunteer myself to start the fire. One thing I learned is that different materials are needed to start a fire, First, start with tinder – such as dried leaves, grasses, and sticks – that catches fire easily, but burns fast. Before the tinder burns out, replace them with something more substantial to keep the flame going. This is where we will use kindling, usually in the form of small twigs or branches. And then finally, go with fuel wood, which is what keeps your fire hot and burning.

This childhood experience can be easily related to media efforts. Tinder and Kindling are campaign-base activities that start the fire. And fuel wood is the always-on  media that keeps your brand going.

 

Comments

Marina Simonians

About Marina Simonians

Marina Simonians is the Head of Global ISV GTM Strategy at SAP responsible for building new global ISV software driven initiatives for Big Data, AI/ML, Advanced analytics and IoT. With a passion for ecosystems she believes partnerships are most critical success factor in today’s software-driven market.

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Daniel Schmid

About Daniel Schmid

Daniel Schmid was appointed Chief Sustainability Officer at SAP in 2014. Since 2008 he has been engaged in transforming SAP into a role model of a sustainable organization, establishing mid and long term sustainability targets. Linking non-financial and financial performance are key achievements of Daniel and his team.

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Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Michael Laprocido

About Michael Laprocido

Mike Laprocido serves as a Strategic Industry Advisor for SAP. He is responsible for developing thought leadership and driving SAP solution adoption in the chemical and oil and gas industries. With over three decades in various executive roles at BP Oil, BP Chemicals, Kuraray America, Panda Energy and IBM prior to joining SAP, Mike has gained a broad and deep industry knowledge base that he leverages to help his clients to innovate and transform their business through the application of digital technology.

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Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Tags:

Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Joerg Koesters

About Joerg Koesters

Joerg Koesters is the Head of Retail Marketing and Communication at SAP. He is a Technology Marketing executive with 20 years of experience in Marketing, Sales and Consulting, Joerg has deep knowledge in retail and consumer products having worked both in the industry and in the technology sector.

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Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Rob Meikle

About Rob Meikle

Rob Meikle is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the City of Toronto, Canada's largest city, sixth largest government and home to a diverse population of about 2.7 million people.

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Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Jason Bloomberg

About Jason Bloomberg

Jason Bloomberg is a leading IT industry analyst, Forbes contributor, keynote speaker, and globally recognized expert on multiple disruptive trends in enterprise technology and digital transformation. He is founder and president of the agile digital transformation analyst firm Intellyx. He is ranked #5 on Onalytica’s list of top digital transformation influencers for 2018 and #15 on Jax’s list of top DevOps influencers for 2017, the only person to appear on both lists. Mr. Bloomberg is the author or coauthor of four books, including The Agile Architecture Revolution (Wiley, 2013). His next book, Agile Digital Transformation, is due within the next year.

Tags:

Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Lane Leskela

About Lane Leskela

Lane Leskela, global business development director, Finance and Risk, for SAP, is an accomplished enterprise software leader with years of experience in customer advisory, marketing, market research, and business development. He is an expert in risk and compliance management software functions, solution road maps, implementation strategy, and channel partner management.

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Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Jennifer Scholze

About Jennifer Scholze

Jennifer Scholze is the Global Lead for Industry Marketing for the Mill Products and Mining Industries at SAP. She has over 20 years of technology marketing, communications and venture capital experience and lives in the Boston area with her husband and two children.

Tags:

Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Matt Wilkinson

About Matt Wilkinson

Matt Wilkinson is the General Manager, Consumer Industries for SAP ANZ. Having operational roles in consumer industries organisations combined with 20+ years of professional services in both delivery and sales roles with cloud and on premise solutions, provide him with a unique insight to help organisations achieve effective digital transformation.

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Awareness

Data Management and Retention Requirements

Irfan Khan

In his annual state of the union speech last month President Barack Obama made a passing reference to the need for the U.S. to train more people in data management to supply the needs of companies. A little later in the speech he talked about how some new, targeted government regulations would benefit honest businesses while rooting out the bad apples. Maybe he was thinking that those newly trained data managers would be able to help companies with the advanced data management techniques his undefined regulations would require.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against all regulations. And I’m certainly not opposed to giving tuition credits to students wanting to study the art of data management. But, as the politicians like to say, “let’s be perfectly clear”: modern government regulations require IT professionals to implement new data management policies to prove they are in compliance with changes in the law.

For example, in 2006 the European Union issued a directive to communications carriersforcing them to hold on to subscriber usage data for six to 24 months. That’s so the companies can quickly respond to legal authorities who need to access data for criminal investigations. While some operators may already keep the information, it’s often stored offline. In the case of the EU directive, the information must be able to be accessed without delay by authorities armed with a warrant.

The way the EU directive was written means that wire line, wireless, and ISP operators must retain 15 categories of data. And because the time periods vary, the amount of data to be stored is unpredictable. As you can imagine, the EU also imposed some hefty data security demands as well as unique access requirements. For example, some legal authorities may send their warrants by FAX, e-mail, or even letters via the postal service.

Needless to say, the regulations don’t spell out exactly how carriers should implement the data retention policy. They simply need to do so.

It’s not just the EU creating rules affecting corporate data management. Japan is now considering revising its strict data protection policyfor consumers. The U.S. is in a political battle between those that want tighter Internet controls for copyright holders. And many other nations are designing new laws that affect how companies manage their data.

As I’ve argued here before, having a chief data officer would give enterprises a huge competitive advantage by being able to anticipate the impact new regulations would have on an organization’s data management strategy. In fact, it is increasingly paramount for large multinational companies to have a C-level data officer. Without one, the enterprise lacks a critical resource to compete in today’s global markets.

I agree with President Obama. Data management is, indeed, an excellent career choice for young people. After all, companies need smart people who understand its strategic importance and know how to react quickly when the politicians change the rules on data management for business. Again. And again.

Comments

Marina Simonians

About Marina Simonians

Marina Simonians is the Head of Global ISV GTM Strategy at SAP responsible for building new global ISV software driven initiatives for Big Data, AI/ML, Advanced analytics and IoT. With a passion for ecosystems she believes partnerships are most critical success factor in today’s software-driven market.

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Awareness

The Blockchain Solution

By Gil Perez, Tom Raftery, Hans Thalbauer, Dan Wellers, and Fawn Fitter

In 2013, several UK supermarket chains discovered that products they were selling as beef were actually made at least partly—and in some cases, entirely—from horsemeat. The resulting uproar led to a series of product recalls, prompted stricter food testing, and spurred the European food industry to take a closer look at how unlabeled or mislabeled ingredients were finding their way into the food chain.

By 2020, a scandal like this will be eminently preventable.

The separation between bovine and equine will become immutable with Internet of Things (IoT) sensors, which will track the provenance and identity of every animal from stall to store, adding the data to a blockchain that anyone can check but no one can alter.

Food processing companies will be able to use that blockchain to confirm and label the contents of their products accordingly—down to the specific farms and animals represented in every individual package. That level of detail may be too much information for shoppers, but they will at least be able to trust that their meatballs come from the appropriate species.

The Spine of Digitalization

Keeping food safer and more traceable is just the beginning, however. Improvements in the supply chain, which have been incremental for decades despite billions of dollars of technology investments, are about to go exponential. Emerging technologies are converging to transform the supply chain from tactical to strategic, from an easily replicable commodity to a new source of competitive differentiation.

You may already be thinking about how to take advantage of blockchain technology, which makes data and transactions immutable, transparent, and verifiable (see “What Is Blockchain and How Does It Work?”). That will be a powerful tool to boost supply chain speed and efficiency—always a worthy goal, but hardly a disruptive one.

However, if you think of blockchain as the spine of digitalization and technologies such as AI, the IoT, 3D printing, autonomous vehicles, and drones as the limbs, you have a powerful supply chain body that can leapfrog ahead of its competition.

What Is Blockchain and How Does It Work?

Here’s why blockchain technology is critical to transforming the supply chain.

Blockchain is essentially a sequential, distributed ledger of transactions that is constantly updated on a global network of computers. The ownership and history of a transaction is embedded in the blockchain at the transaction’s earliest stages and verified at every subsequent stage.

A blockchain network uses vast amounts of computing power to encrypt the ledger as it’s being written. This makes it possible for every computer in the network to verify the transactions safely and transparently. The more organizations that participate in the ledger, the more complex and secure the encryption becomes, making it increasingly tamperproof.

Why does blockchain matter for the supply chain?

  • It enables the safe exchange of value without a central verifying partner, which makes transactions faster and less expensive.
  • It dramatically simplifies recordkeeping by establishing a single, authoritative view of the truth across all parties.
  • It builds a secure, immutable history and chain of custody as different parties handle the items being shipped, and it updates the relevant documentation.
  • By doing these things, blockchain allows companies to create smart contracts based on programmable business logic, which can execute themselves autonomously and thereby save time and money by reducing friction and intermediaries.

Hints of the Future

In the mid-1990s, when the World Wide Web was in its infancy, we had no idea that the internet would become so large and pervasive, nor that we’d find a way to carry it all in our pockets on small slabs of glass.

But we could tell that it had vast potential.

Today, with the combination of emerging technologies that promise to turbocharge digital transformation, we’re just beginning to see how we might turn the supply chain into a source of competitive advantage (see “What’s the Magic Combination?”).

What’s the Magic Combination?

Those who focus on blockchain in isolation will miss out on a much bigger supply chain opportunity.

Many experts believe emerging technologies will work with blockchain to digitalize the supply chain and create new business models:

  • Blockchain will provide the foundation of automated trust for all parties in the supply chain.
  • The IoT will link objects—from tiny devices to large machines—and generate data about status, locations, and transactions that will be recorded on the blockchain.
  • 3D printing will extend the supply chain to the customer’s doorstep with hyperlocal manufacturing of parts and products with IoT sensors built into the items and/or their packaging. Every manufactured object will be smart, connected, and able to communicate so that it can be tracked and traced as needed.
  • Big Data management tools will process all the information streaming in around the clock from IoT sensors.
  • AI and machine learning will analyze this enormous amount of data to reveal patterns and enable true predictability in every area of the supply chain.

Combining these technologies with powerful analytics tools to predict trends will make lack of visibility into the supply chain a thing of the past. Organizations will be able to examine a single machine across its entire lifecycle and identify areas where they can improve performance and increase return on investment. They’ll be able to follow and monitor every component of a product, from design through delivery and service. They’ll be able to trigger and track automated actions between and among partners and customers to provide customized transactions in real time based on real data.

After decades of talk about markets of one, companies will finally have the power to create them—at scale and profitably.

Amazon, for example, is becoming as much a logistics company as a retailer. Its ordering and delivery systems are so streamlined that its customers can launch and complete a same-day transaction with a push of a single IP-enabled button or a word to its ever-attentive AI device, Alexa. And this level of experimentation and innovation is bubbling up across industries.

Consider manufacturing, where the IoT is transforming automation inside already highly automated factories. Machine-to-machine communication is enabling robots to set up, provision, and unload equipment quickly and accurately with minimal human intervention. Meanwhile, sensors across the factory floor are already capable of gathering such information as how often each machine needs maintenance or how much raw material to order given current production trends.

Once they harvest enough data, businesses will be able to feed it through machine learning algorithms to identify trends that forecast future outcomes. At that point, the supply chain will start to become both automated and predictive. We’ll begin to see business models that include proactively scheduling maintenance, replacing parts just before they’re likely to break, and automatically ordering materials and initiating customer shipments.

Italian train operator Trenitalia, for example, has put IoT sensors on its locomotives and passenger cars and is using analytics and in-memory computing to gauge the health of its trains in real time, according to an article in Computer Weekly. “It is now possible to affordably collect huge amounts of data from hundreds of sensors in a single train, analyse that data in real time and detect problems before they actually happen,” Trenitalia’s CIO Danilo Gismondi told Computer Weekly.

Blockchain allows all the critical steps of the supply chain to go electronic and become irrefutably verifiable by all the critical parties within minutes: the seller and buyer, banks, logistics carriers, and import and export officials.

The project, which is scheduled to be completed in 2018, will change Trenitalia’s business model, allowing it to schedule more trips and make each one more profitable. The railway company will be able to better plan parts inventories and determine which lines are consistently performing poorly and need upgrades. The new system will save €100 million a year, according to ARC Advisory Group.

New business models continue to evolve as 3D printers become more sophisticated and affordable, making it possible to move the end of the supply chain closer to the customer. Companies can design parts and products in materials ranging from carbon fiber to chocolate and then print those items in their warehouse, at a conveniently located third-party vendor, or even on the client’s premises.

In addition to minimizing their shipping expenses and reducing fulfillment time, companies will be able to offer more personalized or customized items affordably in small quantities. For example, clothing retailer Ministry of Supply recently installed a 3D printer at its Boston store that enables it to make an article of clothing to a customer’s specifications in under 90 minutes, according to an article in Forbes.

This kind of highly distributed manufacturing has potential across many industries. It could even create a market for secure manufacturing for highly regulated sectors, allowing a manufacturer to transmit encrypted templates to printers in tightly protected locations, for example.

Meanwhile, organizations are investigating ways of using blockchain technology to authenticate, track and trace, automate, and otherwise manage transactions and interactions, both internally and within their vendor and customer networks. The ability to collect data, record it on the blockchain for immediate verification, and make that trustworthy data available for any application delivers indisputable value in any business context. The supply chain will be no exception.

Blockchain Is the Change Driver

The supply chain is configured as we know it today because it’s impossible to create a contract that accounts for every possible contingency. Consider cross-border financial transfers, which are so complex and must meet so many regulations that they require a tremendous number of intermediaries to plug the gaps: lawyers, accountants, customer service reps, warehouse operators, bankers, and more. By reducing that complexity, blockchain technology makes intermediaries less necessary—a transformation that is revolutionary even when measured only in cost savings.

“If you’re selling 100 items a minute, 24 hours a day, reducing the cost of the supply chain by just $1 per item saves you more than $52.5 million a year,” notes Dirk Lonser, SAP go-to-market leader at DXC Technology, an IT services company. “By replacing manual processes and multiple peer-to-peer connections through fax or e-mail with a single medium where everyone can exchange verified information instantaneously, blockchain will boost profit margins exponentially without raising prices or even increasing individual productivity.”

But the potential for blockchain extends far beyond cost cutting and streamlining, says Irfan Khan, CEO of supply chain management consulting and systems integration firm Bristlecone, a Mahindra Group company. It will give companies ways to differentiate.

“Blockchain will let enterprises more accurately trace faulty parts or products from end users back to factories for recalls,” Khan says. “It will streamline supplier onboarding, contracting, and management by creating an integrated platform that the company’s entire network can access in real time. It will give vendors secure, transparent visibility into inventory 24×7. And at a time when counterfeiting is a real concern in multiple industries, it will make it easy for both retailers and customers to check product authenticity.”

Blockchain allows all the critical steps of the supply chain to go electronic and become irrefutably verifiable by all the critical parties within minutes: the seller and buyer, banks, logistics carriers, and import and export officials. Although the key parts of the process remain the same as in today’s analog supply chain, performing them electronically with blockchain technology shortens each stage from hours or days to seconds while eliminating reams of wasteful paperwork. With goods moving that quickly, companies have ample room for designing new business models around manufacturing, service, and delivery.

Challenges on the Path to Adoption

For all this to work, however, the data on the blockchain must be correct from the beginning. The pills, produce, or parts on the delivery truck need to be the same as the items listed on the manifest at the loading dock. Every use case assumes that the data is accurate—and that will only happen when everything that’s manufactured is smart, connected, and able to self-verify automatically with the help of machine learning tuned to detect errors and potential fraud.

Companies are already seeing the possibilities of applying this bundle of emerging technologies to the supply chain. IDC projects that by 2021, at least 25% of Forbes Global 2000 (G2000) companies will use blockchain services as a foundation for digital trust at scale; 30% of top global manufacturers and retailers will do so by 2020. IDC also predicts that by 2020, up to 10% of pilot and production blockchain-distributed ledgers will incorporate data from IoT sensors.

Despite IDC’s optimism, though, the biggest barrier to adoption is the early stage level of enterprise use cases, particularly around blockchain. Currently, the sole significant enterprise blockchain production system is the virtual currency Bitcoin, which has unfortunately been tainted by its associations with speculation, dubious financial transactions, and the so-called dark web.

The technology is still in a sufficiently early stage that there’s significant uncertainty about its ability to handle the massive amounts of data a global enterprise supply chain generates daily. Never mind that it’s completely unregulated, with no global standard. There’s also a critical global shortage of experts who can explain emerging technologies like blockchain, the IoT, and machine learning to nontechnology industries and educate organizations in how the technologies can improve their supply chain processes. Finally, there is concern about how blockchain’s complex algorithms gobble computing power—and electricity (see “Blockchain Blackouts”).

Blockchain Blackouts

Blockchain is a power glutton. Can technology mediate the issue?

A major concern today is the enormous carbon footprint of the networks creating and solving the algorithmic problems that keep blockchains secure. Although virtual currency enthusiasts claim the problem is overstated, Michael Reed, head of blockchain technology for Intel, has been widely quoted as saying that the energy demands of blockchains are a significant drain on the world’s electricity resources.

Indeed, Wired magazine has estimated that by July 2019, the Bitcoin network alone will require more energy than the entire United States currently uses and that by February 2020 it will use as much electricity as the entire world does today.

Still, computing power is becoming more energy efficient by the day and sticking with paperwork will become too slow, so experts—Intel’s Reed among them—consider this a solvable problem.

“We don’t know yet what the market will adopt. In a decade, it might be status quo or best practice, or it could be the next Betamax, a great technology for which there was no demand,” Lonser says. “Even highly regulated industries that need greater transparency in the entire supply chain are moving fairly slowly.”

Blockchain will require acceptance by a critical mass of companies, governments, and other organizations before it displaces paper documentation. It’s a chicken-and-egg issue: multiple companies need to adopt these technologies at the same time so they can build a blockchain to exchange information, yet getting multiple companies to do anything simultaneously is a challenge. Some early initiatives are already underway, though:

  • A London-based startup called Everledger is using blockchain and IoT technology to track the provenance, ownership, and lifecycles of valuable assets. The company began by tracking diamonds from mine to jewelry using roughly 200 different characteristics, with a goal of stopping both the demand for and the supply of “conflict diamonds”—diamonds mined in war zones and sold to finance insurgencies. It has since expanded to cover wine, artwork, and other high-value items to prevent fraud and verify authenticity.
  • In September 2017, SAP announced the creation of its SAP Leonardo Blockchain Co-Innovation program, a group of 27 enterprise customers interested in co-innovating around blockchain and creating business buy-in. The diverse group of participants includes management and technology services companies Capgemini and Deloitte, cosmetics company Natura Cosméticos S.A., and Moog Inc., a manufacturer of precision motion control systems.
  • Two of Europe’s largest shipping ports—Rotterdam and Antwerp—are working on blockchain projects to streamline interaction with port customers. The Antwerp terminal authority says eliminating paperwork could cut the costs of container transport by as much as 50%.
  • The Chinese online shopping behemoth Alibaba is experimenting with blockchain to verify the authenticity of food products and catch counterfeits before they endanger people’s health and lives.
  • Technology and transportation executives have teamed up to create the Blockchain in Transport Alliance (BiTA), a forum for developing blockchain standards and education for the freight industry.

It’s likely that the first blockchain-based enterprise supply chain use case will emerge in the next year among companies that see it as an opportunity to bolster their legal compliance and improve business processes. Once that happens, expect others to follow.

Customers Will Expect Change

It’s only a matter of time before the supply chain becomes a competitive driver. The question for today’s enterprises is how to prepare for the shift. Customers are going to expect constant, granular visibility into their transactions and faster, more customized service every step of the way. Organizations will need to be ready to meet those expectations.

If organizations have manual business processes that could never be automated before, now is the time to see if it’s possible. Organizations that have made initial investments in emerging technologies are looking at how their pilot projects are paying off and where they might extend to the supply chain. They are starting to think creatively about how to combine technologies to offer a product, service, or business model not possible before.

A manufacturer will load a self-driving truck with a 3D printer capable of creating a customer’s ordered item en route to delivering it. A vendor will capture the market for a socially responsible product by allowing its customers to track the product’s production and verify that none of its subcontractors use slave labor. And a supermarket chain will win over customers by persuading them that their choice of supermarket is also a choice between being certain of what’s in their food and simply hoping that what’s on the label matches what’s inside.

At that point, a smart supply chain won’t just be a competitive edge. It will become a competitive necessity. D!


About the Authors

Gil Perez is Senior Vice President, Internet of Things and Digital Supply Chain, at SAP.

Tom Raftery is Global Vice President, Futurist, and Internet of Things Evangelist, at SAP.

Hans Thalbauer is Senior Vice President, Internet of Things and Digital Supply Chain, at SAP.

Dan Wellers is Global Lead, Digital Futures, at SAP.

Fawn Fitter is a freelance writer specializing in business and technology.

Read more thought provoking articles in the latest issue of the Digitalist Magazine, Executive Quarterly.

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CEO Priorities And Challenges In The Digital World

Dr. Chakib Bouhdary

Digital transformation is here, and it is moving fast. Companies are starting to realize the enormous power of digital technologies like artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of things (IoT) and blockchain. These technologies will drive massive opportunities—and threats—for every company, and they will impact all aspects of business, including the business model. In fact, business velocity has never been this fast, yet it will never be this slow again.

To move quickly, companies need to be clear on what they want to achieve through digital transformation and understand the possible roadblocks. Based on my meetings with customer executives across regions and industries, I have learned that CEOs often have the same three priorities and face the same three challenges:

1. Customer experience – No longer defined by omnichannel and personalized marketing.

Not surprisingly, 92 percent of digital leaders focus on customer experience. However, this is no longer just about omnichannel and personalized marketing – it is about the total customer experience. Businesses are realizing that they need to reimagine their value proposition and orchestrate changes across the value chain – from the first point of interaction to manufacturing, to shipment, to service – and be able to deliver the total customer experience. In some cases, it will even be necessary to change the core product or service itself.

2. Step change in productivity – Transform productivity and cost structure through digital technologies.

Businesses have been using technology to achieve growth for decades, but by combining emerging technologies, they can now achieve a significant productivity boost and reduce costs. For this to happen, companies must first identify the scenarios that will drive significant change in productivity, prioritize them based on value, and then determine the right technologies and solutions. Both Mckinsey and Boston Consulting Group expect a 15 to 30 percent improvement in productivity through digital advancements – blowing the doors off business-as-usual and its incremental productivity growth of 1 to 2 percent.

3. Employee engagement – Fostering a culture of innovation should be at the core of any business.

Companies are looking to create an environment that encourages creativity and innovation. Leaders are attracting the needed talent and building the right skill sets. Additionally, they aim for ways to attract a diverse workforce, improve collaborations, and empower employees – because engaged employees are crucial in order to achieve the best results. This Gallup study reveals that approximately 85 percent of employees worldwide are performing below their potential due to engagement issues.

As CEOs work towards achieving these three desired outcomes, they face some critical challenges that they must address. I define the top three challenges as follows: run vs. innovate, corporate cholesterol, and digital transformation roadmap.

1. Run vs. innovate – To be successful you must prioritize the future.

The foremost challenge that CEOs are facing is how they can keep running current profitable businesses while investing in future innovations. Quite often these two conflict as most executives mistakenly prioritize the first and spend much less time on the latter. This must change. CEOs and their management teams need to spend more time thinking about what digital is for them, discuss new ideas, and reimagine the future. According to Gartner, approximately 50 percent of boards are pushing their CEOs to make progress on digital. Although this is a promising sign, digital must become a priority on every CEOs agenda.

2. Corporate cholesterol – Do not let company culture get in the way of change.

The older the company is, the more stuck it likely is with policies, procedures, layers of management, and risk averseness. When a company’s own processes get in the way of change, that is what I call “corporate cholesterol.” CEOs need to change the culture, encourage cross-team collaborations, and bring in more diverse thinking to reduce the cholesterol levels. In fact, both Mckinsey and Capgemini conclude that culture is the number-one obstacle to digital effectiveness.

3. Digital transformation roadmap – Digital transformation is a journey without a destination.

Many CEOs struggle with their digital roadmap. Questions like: Where do I start? Can a CDO or another executive run this innovation for me? What is my three- to five-year roadmap? often come up during the conversations. Most companies think that there is a set roadmap, or a silver bullet, for digital transformation, but that is not the case. Digital transformation is a journey without a destination, and each company must start small, acquire the necessary skills and knowledge, and continue to innovate.

It is time to face the digital reality and make it a priority. According to KPMG, 70 percent to 80 percent of CEOs believe that the next three years are more critical for their company than the last fifty. And there is good reason to worry, as 75 percent of S&P 500 companies from 2012 will be replaced by 2027 at the current disruption rate.

Download this short executive document. 

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Dr. Chakib Bouhdary

About Dr. Chakib Bouhdary

Dr. Chakib Bouhdary is the Digital Transformation Officer at SAP. Chakib spearheads thought leadership for the SAP digital strategy and advises on the SAP business model, having led its transformation in 2010. He also engages with strategic customers and prospects on digital strategy and chairs Executive Digital Exchange (EDX), which is a global community of digital innovation leaders. Follow Chakib on LinkedIn and Twitter