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australians Archives - Syneka Marketing

Exploring the customer experience through the marketing mix

By | Advice, Advice for Businesses, Government | No Comments

Last time we explored the current buzz around the term customer experience. While it is positive to see an emphasis on the customer perspective, in reality this concept is nothing new and is a rehash of the original marketing mix.

While the marketing mix is fundamental to the discipline, it is often an area that many businesses fail to get right, partly due to the dilution of what customer experience actually means.

A successful experience is where all elements of the marketing mix provide consistency, instils confidence in the purchase decision, and mitigates doubt. The marketing mix helps ensure that all aspects of your organisation, from back-end processes through to front-end communications reinforce your value proposition.

The Marketing Mix (otherwise known as the 7Ps of Marketing)

The Marketing Mix demonstrates the intended breadth of marketing:

  • Pricing should be consistent with the value proposition.
  • Distribution channels or placement reflects this positioning,
  • Provision of physical evidence to demonstrate outcomes.
  • Internal processes should facilitate the engagement of customers.
  • Promotion and communications needs to reflect the value proposition to reach the intended target markets.
  • The actual products or services should be designed inline with customer requirements.
  • The people and personnel should reinforce the image of the business and the core value of the brands it provides.

While the Marketing Mix is the cornerstone of marketing, many marketing managers do not have the required visibility or influence across each of these areas. As a result there is a the potential risk of inconsistency, which can tarnish reputations and diminish customer reach.

Kiki K – an example in the marketing mix:

Kikki K is a brand that designs and sells stationery, consistent with Swedish design principles. It challenges its customers to utilise stationery to create the life they want. Ultimately it uses these aspirations to position stationery as the creator of these dreams.

Kikki K’s stores reflect this aesthetic and this is continued through its digital presence, print collateral and the attitude of the staff. The customer experience is further emphasised by Kikki K conducting events that aim to inspire its target markets through the achievement of dreasms.

The business has created a successful stationery brand with a premium pricing model, despite the commoditisation of the sector through competitors such as Officeworks. The reason this works is due to an approach that provides consistency across the marketing mix. Kikki K has a clearly defined target market and has positioned each element of the marketing mix to reinforce this experience.

2015-09-25 Kikki K Store

And another example:

Contrast this to another example: Telstra, which in recent years has been trying to win the hearts and minds of Australians through interconnectedness and personalisation. While its public communications are promoting a friendly and approachable business, this is often not consistent with the experience customers receive through Telstra’s support systems or retail outlets. While Telstra is fortunate to leverage its history as a regulated entity, most other businesses are not so lucky and would suffer reputational risk and loss of market share due to this lack of integration.

Marketing is holistic

Effective marketing achieves outcomes because it is more than just front-end communications. Real marketing undertakes a holistic approach to deliver consistency and confidence throughout the entire customer journey.

Putting Plans into Action

By | Advice for Businesses | No Comments

In March we covered the topic of putting plans into action.Sound planning is essential, but so is implementation as you need to achieve the results you have identified.

  • Firstly you need to undertake your research. Without research it is difficult to determine your position in the market and identify your value proposition.
  • Secondly, a plan requires resources. It is important to determine your requirements to implement the plan effectively and to consider how you can leverage personnel across your business effectively.
  • Lastly, make sure you commence implementing your plan. Results will only be seen if you turn your plan into action.

In March we explored some case studies that identified how plans were put into action. The Salvation Army South Africa and its domestic violence awareness campaign, through #thedress, is an example of sound campaign planning and implementation. While Seek’s #makeitcount campaign was an example of a great idea – inspiring Australians to go out there and find their dream job, it fell short in terms of implementation. Ultimately this campaign was off message and lacked the innovation that is often seen in Seek’s campaigns.

During March we also conducted our first Re-imaging Marketing workshop at the NAB Village. This workshop attracted a diverse range of participants and explored how business goals need to link to marketing outcomes. Planning should be undertaken prior to any tactical components.

In April we will be covering the topic of assessing marketing implementation. Stay tuned to our social media platforms, newsletter and blog to stay informed.

Seek’s new marketing campaign – an example of a brand becoming too comfortable and losing its focus

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A few years ago I wrote a post about the state of University advertising and how at the time it failed to inspire. Recently, I was quite surprised to see that Seek was following a similar style to these advertisements.

Seek was one of the first businesses in Australia to succeed as a disruptive start up. The impact of Seek has been prolific, it has been able to transform the job market and in doing so, it has demonstrated how technology adds value for both job seekers and employers.

Against many odds, including the international players in the market, Seek has become the market leader as source for finding jobs and recruiting positions.

In the past, Seek undertook a cheeky and innovative approach to advertising, creating campaigns that were witty and clever. Now it appears as Seek has grown, it has changed this approach.

A past campaign

A past campaign

A play on words Source: Smart

A play on words Source: Smart

Seek in its latest campaign, has decided have focused on photographing a series of people, both young and old, who want change in their lives. The tag line “make it count” has been used to reinforce the change. While advocating for Australians to go out there and change their lives, the implementation of this campaign has been poor.

The subjects used in the photography all have serious and unhappy looks on their faces, almost analogous to individuals in not-for-profit advertising, portraying that they have been hard-done-by. These advertisements do not connect with those of us who may be unhappy in our jobs and are looking for a change. Instead the people in these advertisements seem stuck and unable to escape the situations that they are in, reinforcing that sometimes life isn’t fair.

One of the advertisement at a tram stop

One of the advertisement at a tram stop

 

Seek's Make it Count campaign

Seek’s Make it Count campaign

Universities in this country have the advantage of being in a market where there is strong demand. They also do not have an extensive number of competitors and can sometimes, unfortunately make do with poorly implemented marketing campaigns. Seek on the other hand cannot.

With the technology sector consistently building on its innovations, Seek cannot afford to become comfortable. Seek was able to become a market leader because it took risks, focused on being innovative and demonstrated its value to the Australian public. It seems to have forgotten this strategic approach.

We would encourage Seek to revisit their strategy to ensure they continue to position themselves as a market leader and innovator.

Membership and Marketing Workshop with the National Seniors Association

By | Advice, Advice for Not-for-profit Organisations and Charities | No Comments

The National Seniors Association is a peak organisation representing the interests of Senior Australians. Advocacy is undertaken at a national level, with local branches providing activities and events to encourage social interaction, recognize skills and reduce isolation.

Like most membership based organisations, the National Seniors Association needs to strengthen the ability to recruit and retain its members. This morning we conducted a workshop with the National Seniors Association to discuss strategies to assist local branches with membership recruitment and retention.

Membership needs to be seen as a key marketing function for both the National Seniors Association and its local branches. The workshop explored the need for consistency, ensuring that local branches understood their strengths and the reasons that someone would like to join. Furthermore, we discussed techniques to ensure that prospective members were being reached and converted into active membership.

Being responsive is critical to keeping members. There is a need to develop formalized feedback channels, such as surveys to ensure that member feedback is being considered. The use of surveys enables a consistent methodology to ensure that changes can be evaluated and compared against previous results.

Members are stakeholders of an organisation and need to develop a sense of ownership over their organisation. Fostering this level of engagement will assist with maintaining membership numbers and keeping them actively engaged.

Startup Grind

Startup Grind with Paul Bassat

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Paul Bassat at Startup Grind June 2014

Paul Bassat at Startup Grind June 2014

Seek is often regarded as being one of Australia’s most successful technology start ups. We attended Startup Grind June 2014 and heard Paul Bassat, one of the founders of Seek speak about his experiences with developing the job search platform.

Paul came from a legal background and conceptualized Seek with his brother in the mid 1990s after they found there was a gap in the market for an Internet based job search platform. At this time the internet was fairly new to the general public, and platforms were still in their infancy. The company is now regarded as one of the most successful online job search platforms and has offices around the world.

Paul spoke about how he worked to raise money to establish Seek, as this was required to market the platform. He spoke of the importance of partnerships and how to work with corporate.

Seek is a great example of how with the right marketing, a technology Start Up can enter a market and become a dominant player. Seek was innovative and bold in its marketing approach, and this was one of the main reasons they were able to remain and succeed in their industry.

Paul is a great example of an entrepreneur who was able to succeed by coming up with an idea that has transformed the way Australians find employment.

Speaking about Presentation Skills to the Darfur Australia Network (DAN)

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The Darfur Australia Network (DAN) is a not-for-profit organisation committed to raising awareness about the plight of Sudanese people living in the Darfur region of Sudan and build dialogue between Australians and the people of Darfur.

On Sunday, Alex and I delivered a presentation to the Darfur Australia Network on presentation skills.

The network is planning on collecting signatures at Flinders Street Station this Friday during Refugee week. Our presentation was developed to assist volunteers to collect these signatures by approaching people walking through Flinders Street Station.

Much of the presentation focused on confidence and speaking with passion and purpose, which are essential when speaking about causes.

We believe that while many people develop presentation skills over time through programs such as Toastmasters, it is passion, purpose and confidence that really sells a message and enables a speaker to remain authentic to who they are.

Topics covered during the session included structure, body language, tone and volume.

We made the workshop interactive, and participants were encouraged to ask questions as we worked through the content. There were role plays and questions that all the participants were encouraged to answer.

It was great to see the participants at the workshop speak with confidence and passion about Darfur and their role in the community.

We wish volunteers from the Darfur Australia Network the best with collecting signatures on Friday. If you are at Flinders Street Station between 12-6pm please visit the Darfur Action Network, they will be situated at the centre of the station.