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Three Relationships Every Marketer Needs to Strengthen

PuzzleCMOs should be looking to form new bonds that will encourage their company to back them. Danny Hill, Managing Partner, Greater China and SEA, Observatory International explains.

Building strong and positive relationships in your career is vital and marketers need to build more relationships than most.

And as the marketing remit expands and becomes more complex it’s worth devoting time to building connections with colleagues who may previously have been neglected but are increasingly important to delivery.

Marketing Procurement

Your procurement partners can be vital allies for the implementation of future marketing plans. Perceptions of cost-cutting, laborious administration and lengthy pitch processes are becoming increasingly unfounded, even if a recent WFA study “Project Spring” found that 92% of marketing procurement professionals felt that the way marketing procurement is perceived within their organisation could be improved.

In the past the relationship between marketers and marketing procurement has been cautious and sometimes distant. Bringing marketing procurement into your circle and working together on shared objectives for the year ahead can only be a positive way to work.

The marketing toolbox is becoming ever more cluttered and as a result the number of suppliers, agencies and tools used can become unwieldy. Marketing procurement can help you assess, analyse and adjust your toolbox to achieve more than just savings but ultimately added value. The WFA’s report concludes that marketing procurement should not be seen as just “a business partner with shared objectives, but as a source for growth within the organisation… A shift from a savings outlook to a value creation approach is vital.” Arguably this shift can only be successful if marketeers embrace the change and build a stronger relationship with their marketing procurement colleagues.

Marketing Production & Operations Agency

Marketing production, marketing execution, creative sourcing… let’s be honest, it’s never been the sexiest part of marketing, no matter how it’s branded. Necessary yes, sexy no. But maybe it’s time to think again.

With digital and video content consumption continuing to rise sharply, combined with increasing pressure on creative production budgets, maximizing and refreshing your assets in different formats and at different times of the marketing calendar is just one reason why you should be forging a closer relationship with your marketing production agency. Technological advancements, offshore facilities and improved ways of working have made the marketing production agency a vital part of any roster and one that needs to be involved at the very start of any new campaign. Bringing your marketing production agency closer to your plans will likely deliver better value, more innovative solutions and a smoother execution.

Market Intelligence and Customer Insights Team

Unlike the other relationships, it’s unlikely that any marketer worth their salt has neglected the importance of the market intelligence and customer insights team. It’s more likely that the relationship has become somewhat flat with staid processes and ways of reviewing research leading to less than insightful output.

The global pandemic has flooded the market with new research and, combined with the overwhelming digital customer data already available, that can cause great confusion. Reconnecting, refreshing and triangulating your consumer research and data in conjunction with your customer insights team will be a great way to cut through the chaff and reset on your customer targets.

Whether it be in our professional life or our personal life, we can all be guilty of gravitating to our comfort zones and relying on what we already know.

Ultimately, however, new ideas, better insight, great efficiency and effectiveness are rarely found in what we have already done. Investing in new relationships and building strengths in areas that have previously gone neglected may be challenging but it could be ultimately be highly rewarding.

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