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MillwardBrown POV GettingSeriousAbout360

MillwardBrown POV GettingSeriousAbout360

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Published by Iftikhar Jan

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Published by: Iftikhar Jan on Jun 28, 2012
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MILLWARD BROWN’S POV
September 2008
GettingSeriousabout 360
The promise of 360communications issignicant but elusive.While the economicpower of a great brandidea projected througha coherent voice acrosschannels seems to bebeyond debate, muchwork remains if thepromise of 360communications is tobe brought to fruition.It is vital that marketersgrasp this nettle nowbefore the pace ofchange turns the task into one of gargantuanproportions.
The 360 communications discipline has made a big promise: to deliver morecost-effective brand building through integrating the activities of all communi-cations disciplines into a single brand voice. However, while marketers believein the concept, they admit that the promise is not currently being delivered inpractice. A 2007 survey by the American Association of Advertising Agenciesreported that 54 percent of senior marketing executives believe that thedevelopment of integrated marketing communication is “very important.” tosuccess. What is telling, however, is that only 21 percent of those surveyed saidthat their organizations were delivering on this objective “very well.”One of the biggest challenges impeding progress toward this goal is the needto manage an increasing and morphing number of specialists. These expertsare necessary in today’s increasingly complex world, but marketers needconsiderably stronger mechanisms for getting the most value from them.We believe that the promise of 360 communications will be realized mostfully by those brand companies that truly take ownership of the responsibility.Companies that combine a comprehensive understanding of their consumerswith detailed information on their marketing investments will set themselvesup for a protable future when they elect to oversee the critical task of 360communications.And they must do this now, before life gets any more complicated.
The Importance of 360 Communications Control
The central premise of 360 communications is that all brand contacts matterand should be considered holistically when spending marketing money. Ergo,no one set of contacts (e.g., advertising, direct, interactive, experiential, retail)should be planned, developed, implemented or evaluated without referenceto the whole.But standing between a brand marketer and a consumer’s holistic experienceof a brand is an increasingly broad array of specialists. As the number of sepa-rate channels has grown, specialties within specialties have developed, such asmobile communications and gaming within the realm of digital.This is as it should be, because each area has its own complexitiesthat demand expert attention. Within media planning and buying,for instance, a hot question is how much money should be takenaway from TV and invested in multimedia and digital opportunities.Developing creative tailored to each specic medium is of
Sue Elms
Executive Vice President,Global Media PracticeMillward Brownsue.elms@uk.millwardbrown.comwww.millwardbrown.comwww.mb-blog.com
 
The central premise of 360 communications is that all brand contacts matter and  should be considered holistically when spending marketing money.
Who Should Own 360 Communications Management?
An August 2008 article in
Marketing Week 
reportedthat Procter & Gamble was exploring the idea ofappointing a lead agency for each of its major brands.This lead agency would coordinate with other agenciesworking on different marketing disciplines, includingPR, advertising, customer relations, and media buying.To pilot this, Publicis Groupe created a consortium inearly 2007 to handle all activities for the Oral-B dentalhygiene brand.We see this as a healthy step for P&G, but we believeit should only be an interim measure. For a number ofreasons, we believe that the most potent solution wouldbe for brand companies to take the role of managing360 communications in house. First, this centralfunction needs to be close to the brand yet impartialin terms of communications technique. The ultimatequestion with regard to communication is simply,“What’s the best way to reach people?” Next, those whomanage 360 planning must serve as both evangelistsand policemen for the central communications idea,and should not be distracted from these roles by thecomplexities of working within one particular channel.And those in charge of holistic brand communicationmust have a thorough understanding of consumers’view of the brand. Clearly, someone within the brandorganization fullls these requirements better thanany specialist.Most importantly, a client-based coordinator will beclosest to the only source of fully allocated brandinvestment in each type of activity, i.e., the total cost ofeach activity including production, media, management,agency fees, etc. Holistic 360 communication is aboutcreating a connection with the consumer using themost cost-effective means possible; cost-effectivenesscannot be evaluated without knowledge of the fullyallocated cost per connection. Lining up the cost ofeach activity with evidence of return for the brand andparamount importance since the quality of creativeexecution can dramatically inuence effectiveness.For example, the ad awareness impact of one audio-visual ad on television can be 30 times greater thananother and indications are that the same factorapplies for online. Poster recognition scores varybetween zero and 40 percent and recall of online adscan vary between zero and 20 percent, mostly basedon creative power.Given that there is only so much budget to go around,it is only natural that individual specialists will focus onmaximizing their part of the communications mix. Sowho is looking across the big picture? And who is inthe best position to decide if the brand will be betterserved by redistributing the media budget or address-ing an issue through PR or customer communication?Holistic planning and control are necessary to ensurethat all parties are working together, not operatingin silos.Organizationally, the solution seems to be a central360 communications management function wherethe agendas of individual silos are suspended and thecentral brand concern — cost-effective brand building— comes rst.
 
accurately separate the inuence of individual con-tacts, and you risk misreading reality and misdirectingspends. This best practice should be put in place evenwithin silos, although this birds-eye view is most effec-tive if centered within the client. There, it can encom-pass all disciplines and force them to come togetheras a team to drive efcient brand building.Fortunately many of the tools for the job are alreadyin place. Market mix modeling links a wide range ofhistoric marketing activities directly to sales response;it covers the more signicant spends in the differentcommunication disciplines and delivers a bedrock ofmarketing understanding and performance bench-marks for the brand. In a shorter time scale, multivariateanalysis of well-designed tracking research effectivelydisentangles multiple and more granular inuences onattitudinal indicators of success. Our proprietaryCrossMedia approach separates the relative effectsof a wide range of managed communications whilealso taking many other inuences into account. Thesemight include what people experience of the brand andservice, what they hear from other people and sourcesabout the brand, and what retail marketing activitiesthey encounter. Within each of these broad areas, itlooks at the inuence of key activities of interest to themarketer, which might include customers’ experiencethe business is not impossible, but it does demandtenacity. That tenacity will produce signicant rewardsif a new initiative is found to create a better return thanhistoric activities.Jim Taylor from Mediaedge:cia concurs that whileinitially responsibility for 360 communicationsplanning may sit with any one of the plethora ofspecialists media agencies, communication inde-pendents, ad agencies, integrated below-the-lineagencies, management consultants and even researchagencies ultimately brand companies will come toown it. In an article about the future of communicationsplanning (
 Admap
, May 2006), he said “Clients willstart to want to pull control back from their agenciesand, for many, communications planning may proveto be the mechanism for this.”We agree that communications planning is simplytoo big and too central to the marketing function tobe delegated to an outsider. But the other reason thatclients should take over this role is that only the clientwill have access to a real 360-degree view of theconsumer and the true communications investment.
Given that there is only so much budget to go around, it is only natural that indi-vidual specialists will focus on maximizintheir part of the communications mix.So who is looking across the big picture? 
360 Consumer Research Forces Integrationand Drives Efciencies
Successful 360 communications put the consumerat the heart of all efforts, with a focus on obtaining acost-effective consumer response. It is the consumerwho is the real “integrator” of 360 communications,and only consumers can tell us or show us how it is allworking — that is, what all the different brand contactsare making them feel, think and do. The only way tounderstand this in a way that can inform businessdecisions is through genuinely holistic insight andevaluation. If you don’t take all brand contacts intoaccount when you are evaluating activities, you cannot

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