6 June 2014
There are a lot of similarities between an integrated high-end campaign and making soup…
"A man walks into a soup restaurant and orders some minestrone soup. The kitchen has lots of soup chefs and they all want to show off how good they are at their particular area of expertise in the world of soup.
One chef makes great big minestrone pasta with garlic and herbs, one makes fantastic steak and bacon chunks and another stews up lots of delicious tomatoes, carrots, celery and kale. They come together at the last minute and put it all in a bowl and add some stock. It has all the components of minestrone but because they focused too much on their specialities and didn’t cook it all together in the one pot, they lost sight of the fact this was a soup restaurant and with all their ingredients there was little in the way of actual soup in what they served.
The man enjoyed it but he didn’t leave thinking, ‘wow that was good soup’, he thought, that was nice, but weird, I won’t recommend it for soup lovers.”
Back in the day, marketing for high-end interior brands had very few channels through which to tell a story, capture interest and make a sale. It wasn’t easy, but it was simpler. Plus, as it was simpler, every channel tended to be handled in house or by a single agency. A single chef.
Now as there are so many channels and so many agencies who specialise in each one individually, everything can easily get confused when all the elements of your marketing approach are split up and shared out.
With so many groups involved, all with slightly different approaches and indeed slightly different priorities it is inevitable that efficiencies are sacrificed, but more crucially, that the core reason why the high-end interior brand exists can be diluted or even forgotten about. And because this is the real emotional heart of the brand, when it gets lost so does the overall effectiveness of any campaign.
This is what happens when a project lacks focus, lacks an integrated approach.
unity: a whole or totality as combining all its parts into one.
Here are 5 tips to create unity across an integrated approach:
With potentially many 'cooks' working on your broth it is all too easy for the core purpose of your company to get lost. It is crucial to have either one agency working on all your channels who completely understands your core proposition, or someone whose role is to wrangle all those chefs and ensure that what ends up on the plate is fundamentally tied to your companies reason for being; be it a blog post, a poster or a whole campaign.
Each channel should support every other channel. Like the ingredients in soup they all need to work together to complement each other with every sip. An advert needs to reference social channels which are prepared for people arriving with the knowledge acquired from the advert; your colours need to be replicated intelligently across every medium available. Customers expect a joined up experience more than ever so you have to work harder to ensure that’s what they are served.
Even with tone of voice guidelines, having multiple agencies working on your different channels can lead to your brand voice sounding different. Specialist social agencies for example may know how best to speak to your target audience but it won’t be the same way you would want to speak to potential investors. You can set your tone in a different way which impacts on all channels albeit by intelligently controlling the type of content your business produces for use in marketing.
Whether you collect data from your campaigns or you have an agency to do that too it is important to make the most of it by sharing all of your data and all your own findings with all your agencies. This way you can make the best use of all the talents on hand to best effect. Social can learn from PPC data, SEO can learn from email campaign data and so on. Be as open as possible and you won’t miss out on any insights that could make a big difference.
Take a look at the bigger picture regularly to maintain a proper view of how unified your activities are. From there you can check to see if you sound like more than one company, or if something is happening which doesn’t match up with your company’s core purpose and do something about it to get it back on track.
Cover image: © John Healey