by Alan Cassinelli
For a global DTC cosmetic brand, cross-functional visibility saved their holiday season.
The marketing team was going about their normal content planning sessions for their holiday campaigns, creating a list of all the content they expected to share in several spreadsheets separated by marketing channel.
It was a new program manager, who recently joined the team, who recognized the flaws in their system and proposed an alternative to the way “it has always been done.”
To shine a light on the flaws in their plan, she put their campaigns into Opal and created an Opal Presentation. She then shared it with the team so that everyone could see the conflict in front of them – conflict they were not able to see beforehand.
By using the Storyfirst Framework to organize their content, it was clear they were planning to tell eight different thematic brand stories over a course of six weeks.
The team members had no idea that across all their social channels, email marketing, website, and mobile app they were planning to tell so many different brand stories in such a short amount of time. If they had continued down this path, the consumer experience would have been disjointed and their campaigns would have ultimately been ineffective.
Empowered with this new insight, the team refocused their efforts, chose the three strongest brand stories to focus on and aligned their content plans across each marketing channel.
And with that, the holidays were saved 😀.
Visibility in the DTC Era
The direct-to-consumer (DTC) era has created exciting new opportunities and urgent challenges for companies big and small.
One of the most significant challenges the DTC era has created is the new roles and responsibilities of the marketing organization. More than ever, marketing is now the connective tissue across all of an organization’s functions. DTC marketers like those at the global cosmetic brand can no longer afford to work in silos or simply just work on their own marketing channels, everything is now interdependent, thus the need for a new level of shared visibility.
Increasing the effectiveness of cross-functional collaboration should be at the top of every marketer’s priority list. Because when teams are working better together, decision making is more efficient and marketing delivers better results.
According to a study by Deloitte, companies that prioritize collaboration are twice as likely to be profitable and twice as likely to outgrow competitors. Additionally, improvements in collaboration result in time savings worth around $1,660 per employee and also generated quality improvements that are worth around $2,517 per employee.
Improvements in collaboration result in time savings worth around $1,660 per employee– Deloitte Study
Now more than ever it is crucial that marketers are able to communicate internally and share how the brand will be experienced in real-time. DTC strategist and investor Nik Sharma knows this all too well. He’s experienced the excitement and the pain of explosive growth both as the former Director of DTC at Hint and through the many DTC brands he advises.
“With brands that grow fast, often times people don’t realize that there are four or five people who could be doing the same thing. No one talks much about what they’re doing on a daily basis because it’s a ‘waste of time’ — but that results in a lot of overlapping work and inefficiency.”
Whether it’s creating duplicative assets, working on a project that has already been cancelled, or telling too many brand stories that confuse consumers, these all-too-common scenarios hurt fast-growing DTC brands at the worst possible time, when the business most depends on an effective team in order to accelerate growth.
“There’s too much competition to not move fast, but you need to ensure that you are presenting your brand to customers with a unified story.”– Nik Sharma, DTC strategist and investor
It’s stories like those of the DTC cosmetic brand that validate the importance of visibility and necessity of marketing collaboration in today’s DTC era.