tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/digital-transformation Latest Digital Transformation content from Econsultancy 2017-10-23T12:51:45+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69512 2017-10-23T12:51:45+01:00 2017-10-23T12:51:45+01:00 B2B digital transformation: Key trends & recommendations Lynette Saunders <p>Digital transformation is not only redefining how businesses connect with their customers, it’s redefining their business models, the way they deliver value and how they make money. There is little doubt that digital is the future and B2B organisations need to embrace digital transformation and give it strategic importance.</p> <p>A new Econsultancy report, <a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/reports/b2b-digital-transformation/">B2B Digital Transformation: Leading brands share their insights</a>, aims to explore the challenges B2B companies are facing as they drive forward their own digital transformation and the approaches they are taking.</p> <p>The research is based on interviews with senior executives working for B2B companies and agencies including Arkadin Cloud Communications, Work with Agility, Atos, British Gas, IBM, Fuji Xerox, Ogilvy APAC, OppenheimerFunds, Oracle Marketing Cloud, Salesforce, Slater and Gordon Lawyers and Velocity Partners. </p> <p>It was also supplemented with data provided by the 2,400 B2B respondents from our <a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/reports/digital-intelligence-briefing-2017-digital-trends-in-b2b">2017 Digital Trends in B2B</a> survey.</p> <p>For more insight, Econsultancy subscribers can <a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/reports/b2b-digital-transformation/">download the full report</a>, but here are several key trends and recommendations emerging from the study.</p> <h3>Think digital first</h3> <p>Digital has re-engineered the way B2B companies buy and the way vendors market their services. With up to two-thirds of the customer’s journey to the point of purchase being conducted online prior to any interaction with anyone in the sales team, interviewees highlighted the need to think first about online and focus more on digital channels for driving marketing. </p> <p>Rising expectations from customers and prospects is also driving digital transformation as B2B buyers are increasingly expecting the same levels of service they receive as consumers.</p> <p>The need to therefore create journey-based experiences, rather than internal business-focused experiences, is recognised. This includes understanding pain points and where digital can support customers, rather than focusing on the technology first and driving experiences based on this and internal structures. </p> <h3>Create compelling content for digital experiences</h3> <p><a href="https://www.bcg.com/en-gb/publications/2017/marketing-sales-how-digital-leaders-transforming-b2b.aspx%20">More than three-quarters of all B2B purchases today</a>, including small business and enterprise customers, have only limited interaction with salespeople. Buyers are relying on digital resources such as videos, buyer reviews, blogs and social media. Half of all customers today expect a supplier’s website to be a helpful channel and more than a third expect the site to be their most helpful channel. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9777/marketing_sherpa.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="265"></p> <h3>Driving a cultural change</h3> <p>Cultural issues were identified as key barriers to change and interviewees emphasised that without a comprehensive strategy, the various components of the customer experience are unlikely to come together successfully. There is a need to create an organisational structure that supports digital transformation and a culture that encourages change.</p> <p>A key theme highlighted was that it is not one team’s or one person’s job to look at digital, but everyone’s responsibility. A company’s culture needs to support new ways of working which requires greater collaboration and breaking down siloes across functions and teams. </p> <p>Erik Schneberger, SVP, Head of Brand &amp; Client Experience, OppenheimerFunds says</p> <blockquote> <p>The number one factor in successful digital transformation is creating a test-and-learn culture that empowers team members to feel comfortable trying new ideas. This, coupled with having the right team members who are curious and willing to learn new concepts, is the key to success. We need to constantly challenge conventional thinking by asking the question ‘how might we do this differently?’.</p> </blockquote> <h3>Convergence of sales and marketing</h3> <p>A greater push for alignment and collaboration between marketing and sales was a common theme highlighted by interviewees. An increased focus on collaboration allows companies to partner more closely to address their clients’ needs through the full customer lifecycle and provide the best customer experience possible.</p> <p>Doug Kessler of Velocity Partners says </p> <blockquote> <p>Marketing is still very much in the early stages of digital transformation. So every marketing department is facing a major change management challenge before they even get to the challenges involving new technologies and processes. The B2B companies that master the change management part of the equation will blow away those that try to simply force new technology and new processes into the old organisation.</p> </blockquote> <p>Traditional marketing roles are therefore being redefined due to the increased importance of the customer experience and increased strategic nature of marketing within B2B businesses. Businesses that are transforming successfully are very much considering marketing as a strategic partner.</p> <p>According to Andrea Tucker, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Oracle Marketing Cloud, the most successful organisations have established ongoing meetings and metrics with marketing and sales that look at the whole customer experience from first touch to final sale and adjust their methods as they identify the best practices that lead to a close. Technology has helped engender new agreements between sales and marketing to facilitate higher quality leads and relevant conversations. As organisations strive to make the buyer’s journey even more efficient, new technologies such as chatbots and artificial intelligence are starting to pop up. </p> <h3>Transformation takes time</h3> <p>Just to conclude with a few final thoughts from our interviewees on what they see as the key ingredients for success in driving through digital transformation. </p> <p>For Nicki Soffe, Marketing and Product Marketing Director at Arkadin Cloud Communications, it is about being open to new ways of doing things, but also considering how the company operates and the markets it is serving. Technology is important, but how people interact with and make use of the technology is key to digital transformation being a success.</p> <p>“It is about stepping out of the traditional B2B mindset and seeing your customers as people who live within the digital space as ‘consumers’ as well. That will open up more ideas and doors for creativity and new practices”, says Daniel David, Manager, Digital Corporate Communications at Fuji Xerox.</p> <p>With more and more services being mediated through technology, and an increasing share of revenue being made online, there is little doubt that digital is the future and B2B organisations need to embrace digital transformation and give it strategic importance.</p> <p><strong><em>For more insight, download the new Econsultancy report – <a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/reports/b2b-digital-transformation/">B2B Digital Transformation: Leading brands share their insights</a>. </em></strong></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:Report/4622 2017-10-23T12:00:00+01:00 2017-10-23T12:00:00+01:00 B2B Digital Transformation <p>The<strong> </strong><strong>B2B Digital Transformation: Leading brands share their insights </strong>report aims to explore the challenges B2B companies are facing as they drive forward digital transformation in their own organisations and highlights a number of different approaches these companies are taking.</p> <h2>Methodology</h2> <p>We carried out a series of in-depth interviews with senior executives from B2B companies and agencies to understand how companies in this sector are responding to different opportunities and challenges.</p> <p>Companies interviewed include: Arkadin Cloud Communications, Work with Agility, Atos, British Gas, Fuji Xeorx, IBM, Ogilvy APAC, OppenheimerFunds, Oracle Marketing Cloud, Salesforce, Slater and Gordon Lawyers and Velocity Partners.</p> <p>We also looked at sector-specific data from our <a title="Digital Intelligence Briefing: 2017 Digital Trends in B2B" href="https://www.econsultancy.com/reports/digital-intelligence-briefing-2017-digital-trends-in-b2b">2017 Digital Trends in B2B report</a>.</p> <h2>What you'll learn </h2> <p>Digital transformation is not only redefining how businesses connect with customers, it's redefining business models, the way they deliver value and how they make money. With more and more services being mediated through technology, and an increasing share of revenue being made online, there is little doubt that B2B organisations need to embrace digital transformation and give it strategic importance.</p> <p>You will learn:</p> <ul> <li>How the focus on digital is changing within B2B companies. </li> <li>Making the customer experience matter is a major focus for B2B companies. </li> <li>Driving insights is a priority, with the future of marketing considered to be around data.</li> <li>Driving a cultural change that supports digital transformation is essential.</li> </ul> <h2>You'll discover: </h2> <ul> <li>How digital priorities are rising higher on the agenda as companies encourage a move towards thinking digital first and creating journey-based experiences. </li> <li>How companies are focusing on putting the customer at the heart of everything and identifying how to enhance the experience and develop a deeper understanding of the customer decision journey. </li> <li>The ways in which B2B companies are moving towards a more data-driven approach, focusing on insights to support the buyer journey.</li> <li>The ways in which companies are driving a cultural change that supports digital transformation and a continuous change type of culture.</li> <li>How companies are adopting new ways of working and working towards digital first. </li> <li>A greater push for alignment and collaboration between marketing and sales.</li> <li>Key ingredients to drive success highlighted by those interviewed.</li> </ul> <p>Download a copy of the report to learn more.</p> <p>A <strong>free sample</strong> is available for those who want more detail about the report and its content.</p> <h2>How we can help you</h2> <h2 style="font-weight: normal; color: #3c3c3c;"><a style="color: #2976b2; text-decoration: none;" href="https://econsultancy.com/training/digital-transformation" target="_self"><img style="font-style: italic; height: auto; float: right;" src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0004/8296/rgb_dt_logo-blog-third.png" alt="Digital Transformation" width="200" height="66"></a></h2> <p><a title="Digital transformation - Econsultancy" href="https://econsultancy.com/training/digital-transformation/">Digital transformation</a> is a journey that's different for every organisation. To enable delivery of your digital vision (or help you shape that vision) we’ve designed a comprehensive approach to tackle your transformation.</p> <p>Covering everything from strategic operational issues to specific marketing functions, we will work with you to achieve digital excellence.</p> <p>Talk to us about an initial, no-cost consultation.</p> <p>Contact our Digital Transformation Team on <a href="mailto:transformation@econsultancy.com">transformation@econsultancy.com</a> or call</p> <ul> <li>EMEA: +44 (0)20 7269 1450</li> <li>APAC: +65 6653 1911</li> <li>Americas: +1 212 971-0630</li> </ul> <p><iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/2q_lWLm5qtg?wmode=transparent" width="560" height="315"></iframe></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69489 2017-10-19T09:52:00+01:00 2017-10-19T09:52:00+01:00 The changing face of consumer trust and the implications for marketers Nick Hammond <p>Always an engaging speaker, Botsman's talks centred on her book <a href="http://rachelbotsman.com/books/" target="_blank">'Who Can You Trust?: How Technology Brought Us Together and Why It Might Drive Us Apart'</a>. The audience was hooked from the start with an anecdote concerning the time her parents accidentally hired a drug dealer to be her nanny; taken in by the woman’s manner with the children and her fake Salvation Army uniform.</p> <p>Botsman's parents used established, learned, ‘trust signals’ to make their decision, but this approach was not insightful enough to see through the pretence. This episode highlighted a key message of her talks – ‘Trust has two enemies, not just one: bad character and poor information’, and ‘the illusion of information is worse than ignorance.’</p> <p>Botsman’s take on the changing shape of trust is less positive than in her previous work <a title="http://rachelbotsman.com/work/" href="https://econsultancy.com/admin/blog_posts/new/" target="_blank">‘What’s Mine Is Yours: How Collaborative Consumption is Changing the Way We Live’.</a> Her story starts with ‘Local Trust’  - the earliest model, where trust was created between people who knew each other personally. </p> <p>The second trust model, that of ‘Hierarchical Trust’, developed between individuals, established institutions and their associated officials – such as bankers, politicians and teachers. As this model crumbled, the replacement model is that of ‘Distributed Trust.’ </p> <p>Using a metaphor of connectivity and power, hierarchical trust involved waves of ‘trust energy’ flowing up from individuals to established institutions. In a distributed model this energy flows laterally between people and between people and contemporary institutions/channels. What we are seeing is the ‘twilight of the elites’ and ‘the inversion of influence.’</p> <p>I liked Botsman’s perspective that trust is a process (not a static entity, in the sense of a belief or conviction) and an active agent that helps us bridge the ‘trust gap’ between the unknown and the known. Trust then, can allow a confident relationship with the unknown. </p> <p>So how is this change in the ecosystem of trust impacting on consumers and how they interact with brands and digital platforms particularly? </p> <h3>Trusting our digital platforms</h3> <p>Developments over the last few years are having an impact on digital platforms, how we perceive them and how they operate. The presidential election in the US and the furore over fake news, allied with the rescinding of Uber’s licence in London, have encouraged different expectations of the role and responsibilities of companies like Facebook and Uber.</p> <p>Traditionally, they have positioned themselves as neutral pathways, or ‘dumb pipes’, that connect people with each other and a service. Events as above have led to pressure for them to change their accountability positioning from: ‘Reactive - within reason, be there when things go wrong’; to ‘Proactive - be responsible for the risks of bad things happening.’ </p> <p>We increasingly outsource trust to machines and algorithms, searching Facebook for news, booking a cab via Uber and asking Alexa what we should do today.</p> <p>From a commercial perspective, this reliance means there are new and different challenges for brands and how they interact with their customers – ‘with great power, comes great responsibility.’</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9772/great_power.gif" alt="" width="498" height="207"></p> <p>Marketeers need to be aware of this changing face of trust. We already know that considerable distributed trust is placed with a wide range of celebrities active across social media, especially on Instagram. This model of distributed trust is also extended to digital brands, platforms, channels, and now algorithms. Consumers rely on these brands and channels – ones that they align with in terms of proposition and delivery, but the price to be paid for breaking this trust can be high, <a title="http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-41384789" href="https://econsultancy.com/admin/blog_posts/new/" target="_blank">as Ryanair is finding out to its cost</a>.</p> <p>Technology is playing a big role in developing this new model of distributed trust, and a key area is that of automation and artificial intelligence. I touched on this in my piece '<a href="http://www.brandlearning.com/views-ideas/marketing-capability/the-future-and-eternal-truth-of-marketing-trust/" target="_blank">The Future (and eternal truth) of Marketing</a>'.</p> <p>‘The relationship between brand and consumer, and the transparency with which it is conducted, risks being further confused by the growing influence of bots. "Choice architecture" is changing with the rise of automation, robotics and AI. Bots will refine choices presented, and even make choices on behalf of consumers. Some argue that the intervention of bots will mean that matters of ethics, which are nuanced not binary decisions, will get side-lined. In reality this places even more responsibility on the brand to uphold ethics. Bots may ignore it in the moment of choice, but ultimately, any brand that cannot meet the requirement for transparent ethics, will risk a consumer backlash.’</p> <p>Of course, there is the opportunity for brands to leverage trust positively. Philanthropic gestures are a powerful way to build trust and a good example of this was Target’s $1 billion pledge to support students in need of financial support <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vUkO6Gh3w6g&amp;feature=youtu.be" target="_blank">to pursue their education</a>.</p> <p>It can also be derived by encouraging positive interaction around a brand. An example of this was Burberry’s ‘Art of The Trench’ campaign, where users could share and comment on everyday pictures of <a href="http://artofthetrench.burberry.com/upload/" target="_blank">people wearing Burberry products</a>. First Direct has built trust though fabulous customer service since its launch in 1989, in spite of not offering the most competitive financial products. Airbnb, perhaps the perfect brand for world of distributed trust, has shown that travellers can just as easily trust normal people offering accommodation as they can established institutions such as hotels. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9775/Burberry_art_of_the_trench.png" alt="" width="650" height="370"></p> <p><em>Burberry's Art of the Trench</em></p> <p>An associated threat to an effective trust process is that of a reduction in friction. Trust needs friction – ‘time and consideration to operate’ and with a faster pace of life, there is increasing pressure on this space. I covered this dynamic on the Econsultancy blog in this piece – <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69101-why-increasingly-efficient-ux-might-not-always-be-a-good-thing/" target="_blank">‘Why increasingly efficient UX might not always be a good thing’.</a>  </p> <p>‘For brands, the question of how to provide the right amount of friction to unlock reflection but not to hamper experience is critical in building a world that, in addition to doing things, thinks about what it is doing.’ </p> <p>Steve Selzer from Airbnb believes that immediacy and the absence of friction are creating a less tolerant, less self-aware world – 'This is why designers of intelligent, immersive experiences need to build in meaningful friction, encouraging reflection and awareness of the actions themselves as well as their consequences.' </p> <p>The advent of other realities, augmented and virtual, in tandem with reduced friction, may also cause problems. <a href="https://venturebeat.com/2017/04/03/3-challenges-of-developing-bots-for-immersive-environments/" target="_blank">A piece from Venturebeat observes</a>: ‘...reflection is even more important in immersive environments, where you don’t so much “watch” or “use” experiences as really “live” through them. VR experiences are perceived by the brain as actually happening to the user, so their transformative potential — toward self-development or rapture — is quite powerful.’</p> <p>Botsman is not optimistic about the future. Her rather dystopian perspective asks where much needed control or moderation can come from. Could there be a role for a digital ombudsman, a trust kite-mark or an ethical Alexa? The reality is that we will always choose utility over morality and regulation is never likely to be popular – witness the outcry over the Uber decision in London. </p> <p>The more we defer responsibility and abdicate the need for channel accountabilty, the more likely that our trust will be abused.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69501 2017-10-16T15:57:00+01:00 2017-10-16T15:57:00+01:00 Pharma must use digital to meet the needs of decision makers: report Patricio Robles <p>According to <a href="http://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/Pharma-s-approach-to-market-access-facing-digital-disruption-study-finds-1003684625">the new Multichannel Payer Marketing study</a> released by DRG Digital Manhattan Research (DRG), pharmacy and therapeutics (P&amp;T) committee members are routinely spending as much as three hours a day or more consuming information delivered through digital channels, and four out of five say they prefer digital content to non-digital content.</p> <p>That preference for digital has a huge impact on the decisions P&amp;T committee members make, as DRG found that "P&amp;T committee members rate pharma apps and websites for payers and healthcare professionals as being as influential on their formulary decisions as in-person meetings with pharma representatives." Close to half (44%) "said they would use pharma digital resources more frequently if pharmas made it easier to find content dedicated to formulary decision makers."</p> <p>While pharma companies have historically relied heavily on reps and account managers, the DRG study suggests that digital content and resources are critical to these reps and managers' success. Over half (52%) of P&amp;T committee members surveyed indicated that digital content makes their meetings with pharma reps and account managers "more valuable." And even more (56%) wanted the ability to follow up through digital channels.</p> <p>All told, DRG found that "P&amp;T committee members rate pharma apps and websites for payers and healthcare professionals as being as influential on their formulary decisions as in-person meetings with pharma representatives...underscoring the importance of a more balanced approach to payer marketing."</p> <h3>The need for segmentation</h3> <p>Not surprisingly, DRG's study also revealed that pharma companies need to be thoughtful about what content and resources they develop because different types of payers have different needs. For instance, "two in three of those (65%) at Integrated Delivery Networks associated with health plans want to access trend reports for a disease area on pharma websites, while half of those from IDNs without a health plan are interested in accessing interactive budget modeling features from pharma online."</p> <p>Put simply, for pharma companies to be successful with digital outreach to decision makers, they need to segment their customers and develop the capability to determine what the specific needs of those segments are so that they can develop the digital resources that they will find valuable.</p> <h3>A collaborative spirit</h3> <p>Perhaps the most important finding in the DRG study was that, despite the fact that the pharma industry <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68248-facing-scrutiny-pharma-marketers-turn-to-unbranded-ads">has seen its reputational fortunes decline in recent years</a>, even among professionals, P&amp;T committee members are very interested in working with pharma companies "beyond the pill."</p> <p>Nearly three-quarters (74%) of those surveyed said they'd be open to working with pharma companies to develop patient-centered digital tools designed to reduce readmissions and two-thirds expressed a willingness to partner on the creation of digital tools designed to help patients adhere to their medication guidelines.</p> <p>In other words, pharma companies will increasingly find that they need to embrace the concept of pill-plus – pharma products bundled with solutions designed to ultimately boost their efficacy – to win over decision-makers.</p> <p>What's more, nearly half (47%) of P&amp;T committee members said they're interested in working with pharma companies to facilitate data collection using techniques like remote monitoring. Given that pharma is one of the industries in which data is perhaps one of the most valuable assets a company can have, it would behoove pharmas to take advantage of P&amp;T committtee members' collaborative spirit to forge partnerships that could pay dividends for years to come.</p> <h3>The digital imperative</h3> <p>DRG's study is yet another reminder of the digital imperative that pharma companies face. It reiterates the fact that literally every stakeholder that pharma companies need to meet the needs of, including <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68248-facing-scrutiny-pharma-marketers-turn-to-unbranded-ads">physicians</a> and <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68846-three-effective-ways-pharma-brands-have-used-facebook-for-marketing">consumers</a>, are increasingly turning to digital channels to meet their pharma information needs.</p> <p>So if pharma companies want to ensure that they have a role in the conversation, they will need to up their digital games.</p> <p><strong><em>For more on this topic, see:</em></strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68851-six-ways-digital-is-changing-the-pharma-healthcare-industry"><em>Six ways digital is changing the pharma &amp; healthcare industry</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68221-embracing-digital-transformation-in-the-pharma-and-healthcare-sectors"><em>Embracing digital transformation in the Pharma and Healthcare sectors</em></a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69416 2017-10-13T11:27:00+01:00 2017-10-13T11:27:00+01:00 Mobile’s sorted, isn’t it? So why aren’t things getting better for many hotel chains? Martin Jordan <p>You won’t rank in Google, you won’t convert traffic and your brand will be slowly dying (at least online). Any traffic from mobile you do receive will be research traffic alone – and likely traffic with high bounce rates and low dwell time.</p> <p>Thankfully the UK market is mature, has always innovated and most brands will at least have a site that is adaptive or responsive to mobile. That said, there is still a lot of evolution required in the hotel web space that actually starts to exploit mobile as a device, rather than just as another browsing platform.</p> <p>Many brands are still staring down low conversion rates and lots of traffic that looks like “research” traffic due to poorly thought out mobile experiences or pseudo-mobile third-party book­ing engines that look like they’ve been there since the noughties.</p> <h3>Intelligent mobile</h3> <p>Today as we see many hotel brand sites pass the 50% mark for mobile traffic, the approach to developing mobile-friendly sites needs to come with a completely different approach to the user – one that is actually less about mobile and more about the user.</p> <p>At Equator, we refer to this as “Responsive Plus” – a site that not only adapts to the user’s device but thinks intelligently about the content it is going to show them by looking at where the user is, what time of day it is, whether they are logged in, whether they have a booking and whether they are in the middle of the booking process. A connected website such as this, with visibility of its location can tell you that User X is at your hotel, making use of their booked stay.</p> <p>Sounds straightforward enough when put like that, but it belies a greater problem in the hotel space, that of legacy, unconnected and inflexible systems. Here in the UK, we have a generally digitally mature hotel space, made up of medium and large-sized chains. The “mom and pop” operations that typify central Europe are far less prevalent here.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9706/travelodge.png" alt="" width="700" height="336"></p> <p>This means that most of the brands here digitised their systems and processes some time ago, buying into comprehensive and complex Property Management Systems and investing in hardware and hosting for them to reside in.  And agencies like ours will have been tasked to build them sites, design a booking engine, get them online and eventually get them visible to mobile users too. All well and good, but this whole technology stack is now woefully dated and is slowly strangling the contemporary hotelier.</p> <p>The reason for this is that the PMS dominates the technology conversation. Everything the hotelier relies on flows from it: the booking engine, F&amp;B, payments, revenue management, channel management, upselling… and a heck of a lot more. If the hotelier wants to do something innovative with any part of their technology stack, the PMS gets in the way.</p> <p>Seen a cool new upselling tool? It needs to work with the PMS. Like to integrate with a smart AI-powered revenue management system? Needs to integrate with your PMS.</p> <p>Hoteliers all over keep having to answer the same question – “What PMS have you got and what version is it?”. Why? Because, invariably it’s legacy, not built on open principles and not designed for easy two-way engagement.</p> <p>So, why are they not tearing out these legacy systems and replacing them anew? Sadly, it’s not always that straightforward. There may be enough CapEx to replace the PMS itself, but many of the incumbent systems connected to it or slave to it will likely need replacing – or certainly overhauling. These systems too will have likely been built as slaves to the PMS and without modern open interoperability. And of course the website will need a new IBE to go with the new PMS too. It’s all expense and can seem like too much for the typical hotelier to bite down on.</p> <p>But perhaps it’s worth sitting down and doing the longer-term maths and building a business case with a 2-3 year viewpoint. Whilst neither the task nor the immediate costs are small, there are multitudinous benefits in the long term. That server-based PMS does not evolve and is likely a few versions old. It needs hosting, it needs patching and it eventually becomes unsupported. Except if you want to pay the supplier a <em>lot</em> of money on support and maintenance.</p> <p>New cloud based technologies are locked out or require prohibitively expensive “bridge” work to make them compatible with your PMS and all along the way. You find you’re missing out on huge revenue opportunities or finding your budget strangled by costs for any enhancement you want to make to it. When this technology is cloud based and open, it’s no longer your problem.</p> <h3>In the cloud </h3> <p>As more hotel systems become cloud driven, we are now witnessing a shift towards a more customer-centric view and away from obese legacy desktop and server-based systems.</p> <p>This new cloud-based approach is opening the hotel tech ecosystem to multiple new players such as Guestline, Hetras and Hotelogix, bringing new capabilities for hoteliers large and small.</p> <p>What used to be an expensive and cumbersome purchase can now be affordably bought from multiple vendors for a single property, as it is for a 100+ hotel chain.</p> <p>With open systems powered by customer data, machine learning and analytics capabilities, hoteliers can exercise their customer data with more flexibility than ever before.</p> <p>This brings a host of benefits:</p> <ul> <li>Smarter front-of-house, capable of personalising the customer experience.</li> <li>More intuitive web experience that tailors itself to the users’ preferences and behaviours, driven by the CRM database.</li> <li>Better marketing function that promotes less but ultimately drives more revenue and deeper loyalty.</li> <li>Unique and individual offerings through an enhanced on-premise experience in a world being commoditised by the OTA.</li> </ul> <p>We’re spending an increasing amount of our time intelligently connecting these systems and have written in more detail about them in our <a title="The hotel in the clouds" href="https://www.eqtr.com/uploads/SmartHotels.pdf">Smart Hotels paper.</a> Whilst technology standards like <a href="http://www.htng.org/">HTNG</a> go a long way to help ensure the interoperability of systems, the technological space in hotels moves very fast and every brand has their own unique needs.</p> <p>There is now huge potential to deliver new forms of service through automation and machine learning – achieved through the connectivity offered by contemporary systems. </p> <p>Examples include:</p> <ul> <li>Linking a hotel’s Wi-Fi system to their CRM platform to personalise the on-site internet experience and give loyal customers super speedy broadband.</li> <li>Developing the ability to reward loyalty without a complex and expensive loyalty scheme or the need to involve senior staff in approval of discounts or upgrades.</li> <li>Taking the typical lobby screen and allowing it to serve real-time offers based on actual availability, demand curves, current weather and more as well as pushing distressed inventory without effort.</li> </ul> <p>It’s this very path to innovation that has the potential to finally free the hotelier’s reliance on the OTA and bring their market share down more in alignment with the airline industry, where direct brand purchases still make up almost 60% of sales. And to suggest that the transition from desktop to mobile could throw this all into jeopardy is to tell just one side of the story. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9705/ryanair.png" alt="" width="700" height="331"></p> <p>With so many expert systems and technologies available at prices that no longer cripple, hoteliers are increasingly building a technology-driven hotel business. And as these systems are connected and made accessible, the opportunities to drive greater revenue, improve efficiencies, deliver better service and change the entire marketing proposition are tangible and excitingly achievable.</p> <p>Any fear of change needs to be swapped for the fear of being left behind. Technology continues to evolve ever faster. If you can’t keep up, find a technology partner who understands your world to help you stay ahead.</p> <p>In the future, when everybody’s lives are in the cloud, the savvy hotelier will be using tech to make their hotel feel like home. The in-room entertainment will be what the customer likes and their dietary requirements will be understood – all without adding mountains of cost or complexity. The future is not far away. But it starts with a <strong>more connected</strong> hotel world.</p> <p><strong><em>For more on this topic, read:</em></strong></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/blog/69414-four-big-digital-trends-impacting-travel-tourism-marketing"><em>Four big digital trends impacting travel &amp; tourism marketing</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/travel-statistics-compendium"><em>Travel Internet Statistics Compendium</em></a></li> <li><a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/blog/67766-10-examples-of-great-travel-marketing-campaigns"><em>10 examples of great travel marketing campaigns</em></a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69477 2017-10-06T16:14:00+01:00 2017-10-06T16:14:00+01:00 Digital transformation and CX maturity at GE Healthcare Life Sciences Ben Davis <p>Lopez Moreda discussed the company's tech platform roadmap and added some insight into how they designed personalised customer experiences for their many customer personas.</p> <h3>The need for digital transformation</h3> <p>The session began with a frank slide about the historical state of GE Healthcare Life Sciences infrastructure and the need for digital transformation. This breaks down into three areas – customer experience, system interaction and fragmented tech.</p> <ol> <li>Customer experience was hampered by non-targeted and non-responsive content, as well as poor content discovery.</li> <li>Multi-system interaction led to a disconnected experience with restricted marketing automation.</li> <li>Fragmented technology ecosystems were characterised by monolithic and customized systems, no support for multiple websites and low insights from marketing efforts.</li> </ol> <h3>The challenges of digital transformation: A stakeholder’s view</h3> <p>From a stakeholder view, this need for digital transformation was manifest as a variety of challenges. Customers were dealing with disconnected messaging, non-relevant and static content, multiple logins and an overall lack of contextual awareness.</p> <p>Marketers were just as hampered, by low community participation, few commercial insights and no personalisation capability. Content editors had no unified interface to rely on, were encountering duplicate content issues and an inability to link content with products.</p> <p>Lastly, developers were hindered by huge start-up time, a lack of design principles, content separation and an arduous build and deploy process.</p> <p>In a humorous aside, Lopez Moreda even admitted GE Healthcare Life Sciences was using Lotus Notes until recently.</p> <h3>Future state of digital transformation platforms</h3> <p>In order to address some of these challenges GE and their partners at EPAM looked to Marketo, Salesforce and Sitecore, allowing them to link together behavioural and sales data.</p> <p>Lopez Moreda described how GE's marketers are now aware when a prospect organisation comes back to one of the Life Sciences' websites, even if a call-to-action form isn’t filled out. The sales team can now see this information and prioritise their own outreach accordingly.</p> <h3>Defining a customer experience maturity model</h3> <p>In order to create a roadmap for platform integration and content personalisation, Lopez Moreda referred to a customer experience maturity model by Petersen, Person and Nash (shown below).</p> <p>Life Sciences sits somewhere in the middle of this model, with its digital transformation given the work of aligning channels, optimising and testing.</p> <p><em><strong>(Click to enlarge)</strong></em></p> <p><a href="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9413/cx_maturity.jpeg"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9413/cx_maturity.jpeg" alt="cx maturity model" width="800"></a></p> <p>In order to improve personalisation capability, the GE team began by sketching out personas, customer needs and journeys. From this came business KPIs, content planning, consideration of implicit versus explicit personalisation, and finally digital goals.</p> <p>However, Lopez Moreda pointed out that this was not necessarily a linear process and needed multiple revisions, with a particular bottleneck encountered when creating lots of different content for each persona. The hope is that further down the line more of this content will be created dynamically or even using some form of machine learning.</p> <h3>Types of personalisation</h3> <p>Sitecore, Life Sciences' personalisation software, enabled three types of personalisation, as shown in the slide below – rules-based (keyword and campaign driven), predictive (using rich behavioural data) and connected (integrated with CRM).</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9414/pers.jpg" alt="types of personalisation" width="800"></p> <p>Lopez Moreda discussed how though this slide is conceptually quite easy to understand, it wasn't easy for IT to integrate these interactions.</p> <h3>Relevancy mapping</h3> <p>Part of defining customer journeys was a process Lopez Moreda called digital relevancy mapping. The grid below was used for each of four defined segments, in order to align content and goals to customer journey stage.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9418/cust_journey_stages.png" alt="customer journey stages" width="615"></p> <p>Once marketing goals had been finalised, they were weighted, with actions such as requesting a quote given heaviest value weighting and the act of downloading a document at the other end of the value scale.</p> <p>Other actions/goals included joining a loyalty club, registering for a webinar, asking an expert, signing up for email updates and updating your account.</p> <h3>Digital transformation outcome</h3> <p>The outcomes of platform integration and content personalisation were plentiful and addressed some of the key stakeholder concerns.</p> <ul> <li>The customer experience now benefits from responsive content delivery, a unified experience on all channels and connected backend processes.</li> <li>Best-of-breed systems have been integrated using an API approach, with Sitecore and Marketo complementing each other.</li> <li>Insights are made available to sales teams.</li> <li>Community participation has been enabled through new features and collaborations tools.</li> </ul> <p>Though examples of personalisation are fairly straightforward, such as offering different content to logged in loyalty club members, these sympathetic and reliable customer experiences are the upshot of much work on platform integration and journey planning.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69465 2017-10-03T23:59:00+01:00 2017-10-03T23:59:00+01:00 Three problems marketers face with digital transformation (and three solutions) Jeff Rajeck <p>What is much harder to find, though, is information about the real issues marketers face when trying to launch digital transformation and how they have handled them.</p> <p>To find out more on this topic, Econsultancy recently invited dozens of marketers to discuss the topic at Digital Cream Sydney.</p> <p>Through roundtable discussions on Digital Transformation hosted by Damien Cummings, CEO of Peoplewave and Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Econsultancy, marketers revealed three issues they often face with digital transformation and how they can be overcome.</p> <p>Before we go into these, though, we'd like to let you know about an upcoming course which we are holding in Singapore on 25th-27th October: Digital Leadership Bootcamp: Build a world class digital organization as you grow your career.</p> <p><a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/digital-leadership-bootcamp-build-a-world-class-digital-organization-as-your-grow-your-career-2/dates/3241/">Click here to find out more</a> and reserve your spot!</p> <h3>1) Defining digital transformation</h3> <h4>The problem</h4> <p>One of the first things mentioned by marketers on the day was that the term 'digital transformation' means many things, depending on who you ask.  </p> <p>To some, digital transformation is a product strategy and involves transforming an entire company.  To others, it is a marketing strategy which aims to move advertising and customer engagement from traditional to digital.</p> <p>Because of this lack of agreement on what digital transformation is, marketers felt that it was difficult to even start discussing a digital transformation project with potential stakeholders.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9326/1.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533"></p> <h4>The solution</h4> <p>Other delegates offered advice from their experience about this concern.</p> <p>First off, marketers should first form a clear definition of digital transformation in their own minds, before trying to get other departments on board.</p> <p>The way to do this, they added, was to self-educate on the topic.  </p> <p>One way marketers can learn about digital transformation is to attend conferences.  Dreamforce, The Festival of Marketing and Econsultancy's many events were all listed as ones which attendees found useful.</p> <p>Also, those who are interested in the cutting edge of digital transformation could visit a startup who is looking to transform your industry or even one of the many incubators which have sprung up over the past few years.</p> <p>Finally, they can read the aforementioned thought leadership documents or take advantage of the many resources Econsultancy provides on the subject such as: </p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69356-the-essential-first-step-toward-digital-transformation">Advice on how to get started</a></li> <li>Recent case studies (<a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67183-an-inspiring-digital-transformation-case-study-travelex">Travelex</a>, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69163-a-digital-transformation-case-study-the-met-office">The Met Office</a>)</li> <li>Or one of the many <a href="https://econsultancy.com/search/?only=BestPractice&amp;q=digital%2Btransformation">best practice guides</a> </li> </ul> <h3>2) Devising a digital transformation strategy</h3> <h4>The problem</h4> <p>Once digital transformation is understood, marketers face the tasks of coming up with a strategy.</p> <p><strong>Most event attendees confessed that they did not have a digital transformation strateg</strong>y or, if they did, it wasn't one that was understood or adopted by the whole organisation.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9327/2.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533"></p> <h4>The solution</h4> <p>Marketers who had successfully written a digital transformation problem said that the most important thing to do is think clearly about what they are looking to change and trying to achieve.  They need to talk in the language of the company and avoid using terms people do not understand, like 'digital transformation' and 'agile'.</p> <p>Also, the strategy should include a 'big vision' of what success looks like so that the efforts both initially inspire people and keep them motivated for change over time.</p> <p>Finally, another delegate added, marketers can be the linchpin of launching a DT strategy, but they need to get 'C level' sponsorship in order for their approach to be adopted by other departments.  </p> <p>This may include reverse mentoring the CEO or encouraging top management to visit startups or companies who are ahead of local businesses, like those in Silicon Valley.</p> <h3>3) Engaging stakeholders on an ongoing basis</h3> <h4>The problem</h4> <p>While the 'big vision' was good to get digital transformation started, marketers said they found it difficult to keep colleagues engaged over time.</p> <p>Other delegates said that they faced other obstacles with stakeholders such as: </p> <ul> <li>Slow reaction to change management,</li> <li>Lack of agreement on objectives, and</li> <li>Low or no budget for digital transformation initiatives.</li> </ul> <p> <img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9328/4.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="550"></p> <h4>The solution</h4> <p>Nearly everyone who had tried digital transformation had found it difficult to engage stakeholders and other departments. </p> <p>One attendee suggested that marketers should avoid talking too much about digital transformation itself and instead talk about the problems their colleagues and stakeholders face and how they could be solved digitally.</p> <p>Such an approach could involve regular education sessions such as: </p> <ul> <li>Digital days with training sessions and digital tool try-out sessions</li> <li>Holding company-wide events with technology providers and agency</li> <li>Monthly events with speakers who had led digital transformation or a digitally-focused startup </li> </ul> <p>Finally, delegates spoke about getting the structure right in order to keep the organisational momentum going.</p> <p>One suggested that setting up an innovation unit with a 2-3 year lifespan really helped keeping initiatives alive. Others advised avoiding outsourcing digital transformation to agency partners and instead using them for faster execution.</p> <p>And finally, the delegates all agreed that the trend is for companies to in-house digital transformation resources, so the future looks bright for those who can upskill on digital transformation and get a programme started at their organisation.</p> <h3>A word of thanks</h3> <p>Econsultancy would like to thank all of the moderators and marketers who participated on the day and especially our Digital Transformation table moderator,  Damien Cummings, CEO of Peoplewave and Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Econsultancy.</p> <p>We hope to see you all at future Sydney Econsultancy events!</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9329/3.jpg" alt="" width="800" height="533"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69444 2017-09-29T08:05:07+01:00 2017-09-29T08:05:07+01:00 Top 100 Digital Agencies 2017: The state of the industry Donna-Marie Bohan <p>In this post I’ll look at which agencies rounded out the top 10, as well as examining the keys trends that emerged from the report. For example, this year's Top 100 Digital Agencies Report notes the evolution of agency structures as brand marketers' sophistication grows and competition heats up in the market.</p> <h3>The top 10</h3> <p>This year sees the total fee income of the Top 100 digital agencies surpass £2.3 billion. 2017 was undoubtedly a period of success, with agencies reporting on average a 20% growth in total fee income.</p> <p>A large part of this growth, of course, is accounted for by the agencies at the top of the ranking. The top five agencies now account for 39% of the entire fee income of the Top 100. Half of the total fee income is accounted for by nine agencies alone. </p> <p>Another flurry of mergers and acquisitions occurred in line with previous years as the industry consolidates further and agencies widen capabilities in an endeavour to become full service. Examples include Capita’s acquisition of Orange Bus, Code Computer Love’s merger with MediaCom and Ayima Group’s acquisition of Quick Think Media. </p> <p>IBM iX slipped this year from the number one spot to make room for Accenture Interactive. 2017 marks a tremendous year of growth for Accenture, with the company further dominating the marketing and advertising sector as it continues its ambitious acquisition trail.</p> <p>The acquisition of marketing agency Wire Stone in August marks the company’s 15th acquisition since 2013. Accenture announced earlier in the year that <a href="http://www.consultancy.uk/news/13653/accenture-raises-the-stakes-with-18-billion-acquisition-plan" target="_self">it would spend $1.8 billion on acquisitions to strengthen its global outfit</a>. The company now stands as the largest digital network in the industry, with <a href="https://newsroom.accenture.com/news/accenture-interactive-named-largest-digital-network-by-advertising-age-in-annual-agency-report-for-second-year-in-a-row.htm" target="_self">revenues exceeding $4.4 billion</a>, further elucidating the dominance of this new breed of agency. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/9132/top-10-agencies-infographic.png" alt="" width="700" height="760"></p> <p><em>The top 10 digital agencies</em></p> <h3>2017 challenges</h3> <p>Three challenges in particular were mentioned by agencies entering this year’s Top 100:</p> <p><strong>1. Brexit and the US presidential election</strong></p> <p>The political and economic ramifications of the past year’s events have resulted in companies focusing on healthy growth in each quarter. There are concerns among agencies and brand marketers about the impact of Brexit on retaining a very European workforce as well as its impact on general trade conditions.</p> <p>Some agencies fear that the reduced appetite for commercial risk, investment and marketing experimentation might pose a threat and that reduced budgets and a drop in the pound will continue to bite in 2018.</p> <p><strong>2. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)</strong></p> <p>Understanding the impact of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/hello/gdpr-for-marketers/">GDPR</a> and upcoming data privacy law changes due to come into effect in May 2018 are a cause for concern this year. While some agencies consider these changes as potentially hampering the targeting and reach of customers, others believe they are an opportunity to improve customer interaction and engagement, enabling their clients to succeed.</p> <p><strong>3. Transparency and viewability</strong></p> <p>Agencies referred to the growing scepticism in <a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/programmatic">programmatic</a> and display advertising, noting clients’ viewability, click fraud and ad blocker intervention concerns. Brand safety and ad viewability are top concerns in the industry.</p> <h3>But it’s not all doom and gloom...</h3> <p>Opportunities highlighted by agencies include:</p> <p><strong>1. Acting as sense maker</strong></p> <p>As the marketing technology onslaught continues, adding further layers of complexity to the marketing ecosystem, agencies have the opportunity to act as trusted partners in advising on the applications of new waves of tech. Tech utilisation and data analytics are highly valued areas of counsel by brand marketers.</p> <p><strong>2. The shift to guiding transformations </strong></p> <p>Many agencies entering the Top 100 this year noted their adoption of a consulting mindset and the changing skillset required of agencies. Agencies are now shifting from being vertical specialists to being high level, broader T-shaped people. Agencies are no longer simply responding to client briefs but are instead focusing on helping clients find problems to solve, offering diagnostic capabilities and solutions.</p> <p><strong>3. Capabilities development and training</strong></p> <p>The trend of skills being developed and improved in-house on the client side as well as the continuous supply of new technologies means that agency engagement with clients is shifting to capabilities development and knowledge transfer as well as training in-house teams.</p> <h3>Game of Agencies – battling it out for market penetration</h3> <p>Consultancies and systems integrators have continued to muscle in on agencies' territory in 2016/17 in what has been a Darwinian period for the industry. It’s a tough and competitive environment, with some agencies battling for survival and losing out to consultancies in winning large digital and marketing transformation work.</p> <p>What complicates things further is that the digital agencies landscape is no longer comprised of consultancies and traditional holding companies. E-tail giants, tech players, media companies, publishers and even mobile carriers are now also competing for the same lines of business. So this begs the question: who will prevail in this Game of Agencies? The winners in the future could very well be something entirely new.</p> <p>Traditional shops are beginning to fight back and adjust to this new normal by building their own business transformation units to better compete. Take the media arm of French ad holding company Publicis Groupe, for example, which launched its own global business transformation practice in 2016.</p> <p>While traditional agencies and independents have been making strides in consulting and offer the creativity, agility and cost-effectiveness that consultancies sometimes lack, there is no real threat to the consulting giants just yet. The consultancies’ access to the C-suite, deep vertical industry expertise, global offices and manpower are certainly advantages. Furthermore, the rationalisation of agency relationships where brand preferences are towards fewer and deeper supplier relationships is a trend that favours the big consultancies over agencies.</p> <p>One thing is certain: with consulting firms acquiring digital, creative and design expertise and traditional agencies developing consulting, data and technology capabilities, agency value propositions are indeed changing. Left brain is meeting right brain in the industry and it is this <a title="The Future of Agencies: Systems and Empathy" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/econsultancy-future-of-agencies-systems-and-empathy" target="_self">‘systems/empathy convergence’</a> that will shape the future of agency capability.</p> <h3>Talent wars</h3> <p>To survive in this competitive environment, skills need to be smart and deep and teams of specialists are required. </p> <p>Attracting and retaining the right talent, however, is one area that agencies continue to struggle with. The talent problem was the most cited challenge among agencies in entry submissions this year and is, without doubt, one of the main barriers to digital progress.</p> <p>As one agency noted:</p> <blockquote> <p>Retaining and attracting talent in a market where demand for digital capabilities is ever-increasing will be paramount to agencies’ success. Clients are also now expecting analytics to prove success and challenging agencies to tell a complete story across multiple touchpoints.</p> </blockquote> <p>Diverse teams of people with the right skills is important for agencies seeking to differentiate themselves through strategy, specialisation and digital expertise but this very often requires staff who are expensive and nomadic. A large part of the challenge is due to the pressures of short-termism; in developing talent and resourcing to keep up with client demand for services as well as international expansion. </p> <p>The skills shortage is manifesting itself in areas such as data science but also in digital design. One agency highlighted the opportunity that this brings for people with in-demand skillsets:</p> <blockquote> <p>The market is exploding for digital design again, and technology is available to everyone and every agency in a way that has never been seen before. The choices for young designers who are comfortable and experienced in bringing tech and design together are exponential. Allowing people to flex their creative muscle whilst constantly working in beta and black and white is sometimes difficult.</p> </blockquote> <p>Agencies also noted the challenges in attracting diverse talent. The media furore surrounding the controversial anti-diversity memo written by ex-Google employee James Damore, in which he presented contentious views about women being less skilled than men in tech, is perhaps an illustrative example of the wider concerns about gender diversity in the industry.  </p> <p>So what are agencies doing to tackle the skills gap? Some noted the establishment of collaborative and agile working practices, organising graduate and apprenticeship training schemes as well as nurturing talent through continuous learning. One agency said:</p> <blockquote> <p>We believe in a company culture that encourages continuous learning, and so strengthening the learning and development opportunities we provide will be key to attracting the best talent.</p> </blockquote> <p>Agencies on the latter half of the Top 100 ranking, as they continue to grow and surpass teams of 50+ and 100+ people, have highlighted their need to balance expansion and growth with maintaining their unique culture and attracting talented employees. These agencies are finding that organisational purpose and culture are just as important as remuneration and location in the search to recruit and retain the best talent.</p> <h3>In-house agency vs. on-site agency</h3> <p>The client-agency relationship is changing. One factor contributing to these changing dynamics is clients increasingly moving more agency functions in-house. More brands are bringing their digital strategy and production in-house, creating digital centres of excellence at client office locations. </p> <p>Transparency issues and a tighter rein on spending are at play here but other reasons for moving in-house and consolidating agency rosters relate to efficiency, agility and speed. Brand marketers often have a better understanding of their brand and audience than external agencies and so the move in-house is increasingly resulting in better work, particularly in the creative space, as well as better bottom-line results. </p> <p>The most obvious benefits of in-house agencies are that talent is owned and not rented and total integration is possible, with brands having the opportunity to align the capabilities of the agency to its needs in a way that is not possible with an external agency.</p> <p>However, there are some downsides. While the decision to create in-house agencies is often taken with the aim to improve efficiency, in-house teams can sometimes lack perspective and a wider sense of context. This year’s Pepsi Kendall Jenner ad, which was <a href="https://www.marketingweek.com/2017/04/05/why-pepsi-kendall-jenner-got-it-wrong/">heavily criticised for appearing to trivialise the Black Lives Matter movement</a>, exemplified some of the pitfalls of the in-house agency. The insularity of the in-house agency model can sometimes result in losing touch with the realities of customers. </p> <p>The Jenner ad therefore reignited the in-house agency vs. on-site agency discussion. An alternative to the in-house model is the on-site agency in which agency employees work on site at a client’s office but are integrated into the culture and operations of the brand. This rise in shared workplaces and co-location has many advantages including greater flexibility, higher productivity and the ability to quickly scale up or scale down depending on client needs. On-site agencies offer a middle ground between an external agency and an in-house agency and can therefore be seen to offer the best of both worlds. </p> <p>Nevertheless, the model is not perfect and may not always be considered as the superior option. For example, an on-site agency is rented and not owned and external vendor risk still exists in the sense that a client is dependent on the agency’s financial health and ability to recruit talented staff. The model that brands should choose if they forgo the traditional external agency model will largely depend on its capabilities and its ability to work well with each type of agency, whether that means investing in the right talent for an in-house agency or working towards true integration if taking the on-site approach.</p> <h3>The rise of modular agency structures</h3> <p>The move in-house and the rise in co-location reflects shifting agency models more generally. Disintermediation is another shift that continues to impact traditional agency structures with more brands going direct to influencers, tech vendors and media companies, essentially cutting out the middleman. </p> <p>Furthermore, as integrating marketing efforts continues to be a challenge, brands are seeking a more simplified agency model, one where there are fewer agencies or one lead agency to guide multiple agencies in an integrated fashion. </p> <p>This type of solution has already manifested itself in something like <a href="https://www.marketingweek.com/2016/08/30/mark-ritson-mcdonalds-zero-margin-omnicom-deal-sets-welcome-precedents-for-agency-contracts/">Omnicom Group’s multidisciplinary on-site offering for McDonalds</a>. This model is an example of a holding group solution for the future where one core agency has several partners such as media companies or tech platforms, for instance. </p> <p>Related to this is the growing trend of modular agency networks such as the agency structure of Publicis Groupe, for example. In this type of model, there are fewer of the same types of agencies, resulting in a reduction in overhead but allowing agencies to rebundle capabilities to serve a client’s specific needs and making cross-functionality and integration more effective. </p> <p>Agencies are therefore becoming smaller, less siloed and more specialised. In the coming years, we may also see a rise in revenue-based compensation models to meet the demands for more accountability and tracking agency work to sales. </p> <p>Heading into the future, it is likely that agencies will also be more distributed, working with talent all over the world via virtual collaboration, utilising remote working practices and rented office spaces as well as taking full advantage of what the gig economy has to offer.</p> <p><em><strong>This article was originally published in Econsultancy's <a title="Top 100 Digital Agencies Report 2017" href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/top-100-digital-agencies-2017/" target="_self">Top 100 Digital Agencies 2017 Report</a>.</strong></em></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:WebinarEvent/904 2017-09-28T05:46:07+01:00 2017-09-28T05:46:07+01:00 Digital Transformation in the Retail Sector <p>This webinar will highlight results from Econsultancy report, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/digital-transformation-in-the-retail-sector" target="_blank">Digital Transformation in the Retail Sector</a>.</p> <p>The live session will be hosted by <strong>Jeff Rajeck, Research Analyst, APAC at Econsultancy</strong>.</p> <h4>Webinar done in collaboration with:      <a href="https://www.ntuc.org.sg/uassociate/" target="_blank"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0008/9214/u_associate__integration_endorsement__logo-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="290" height="89"></a> </h4> <h4> </h4> <p><strong>FAQ:</strong></p> <p><strong>I'm not an Econsultancy subscriber, can I join?</strong></p> <p>Ans: You sure can. The sessions are complimentary for existing customers and new friends.</p> <p><strong>Will the session be recorded?</strong></p> <p>Ans: Yes! We record all of our webinars, and we'll send out a link to the recording the following week.</p> <p><strong>What if I register but can't make it?</strong></p> <p>Ans: It's all good. We'll send a follow-up with key takeaways and a link to the recording.</p> <p><strong>Can I ask questions?</strong></p> <p>Ans: Absolutely! This session is for you. Bring your questions and participate during Q&amp;A.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:WebinarEvent/903 2017-09-28T05:11:59+01:00 2017-09-28T05:11:59+01:00 Digital Marketing in Fashion Sector <p>This webinar will highlight results from Econsultancy report, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-new-face-of-luxury-maintaining-exclusivity-in-the-world-of-social-influence" target="_blank">The New Face of Luxury: Maintaining exclusivity in the world of social influence</a>.</p> <p>The live session will be hosted by <strong>Jeff Rajeck, Research Analyst, APAC at Econsultancy</strong>.</p> <h4>Webinar done in collaboration with:      <a href="https://www.ntuc.org.sg/uassociate/" target="_blank"><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0008/9214/u_associate__integration_endorsement__logo-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="290" height="89"></a> </h4> <h4> </h4> <p><strong>FAQ:</strong></p> <p><strong>I'm not an Econsultancy subscriber, can I join?</strong></p> <p>Ans: You sure can. The sessions are complimentary for existing customers and new friends.</p> <p><strong>Will the session be recorded?</strong></p> <p>Ans: Yes! We record all of our webinars, and we'll send out a link to the recording the following week.</p> <p><strong>What if I register but can't make it?</strong></p> <p>Ans: It's all good. We'll send a follow-up with key takeaways and a link to the recording.</p> <p><strong>Can I ask questions?</strong></p> <p>Ans: Absolutely! This session is for you. Bring your questions and participate during Q&amp;A.</p>