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How does technology help respond to the acceleration of marketing time?

By Antoine de Lasteyrie, Managing Director at Wide Agency, Micropole Group

91% of French companies have started their digital transformation but only 19% of them are in an advanced process! (OpinionWay Barometer, 2017) Yet consumer habits are constantly evolving, and at an ever increasing pace. Digital transformation is no longer an option, but in order to be competitive, it must comply with certain rules or risk evolving too slowly and disappearing.

If television took nearly 50 years to enter almost all homes - about 15 years for the Internet -, social networks took only 7 years! In just over half a century, marketing time has accelerated by 7. An acceleration also caused by the legislator himself who does not hesitate today to break the codes and to adopt a legislative flexibility granting more freedom and simplicity to the users: conservation of their mobile number in case of change of operator, rupture of the insurance contract after one year...

Consulting and creativity are no longer enough

From now on, marketing is also becoming technological and the engineer a generator of marketing ideas. What is the risk for brands that do not integrate this dimension into their processes? In the midst of a service disruption, the main risk is to be bypassed by the competition and to see consumers evolve more quickly than them, leaving them in favour of other, more reactive brands!

And the risk is real: according to INIT, a research institute expert in customer relations, in 2015 95% of customers did not hesitate to change brands if they were dissatisfied with the services provided. Mastering technology is therefore becoming a sine qua non condition for listening to and satisfying customers.

The 7 key impacts for companies

But today, most advertisers are not keeping pace with this acceleration. Many of them are still content to develop websites at the time of Mobile First. A deep paradigm shift that impacts companies. What changes must companies make to succeed in their digital transformation?

Focus on the value of use: the consumer is becoming more and more informed, and consequently demanding. This is why this use value must be of high quality to avoid any gadget effect, synonymous with low added value.
Create in the short term: if the development time is too long, the object risks being obsolete at its release. It is therefore necessary to be able to implement MVPs (minimum viable products) in just a few months...
... But think long-term to anticipate future developments. The key is to be able to adapt very quickly to changes in consumption patterns.
Think about the business case and the use of the data collected. Too many companies still don't know how to use them.
Measure, quantify, and objectify thanks to KPIs to precisely define the performance level of the marketing campaigns implemented.
Work in a collective, collaborative and communicative mode: no more siloed ideas, it's time to share, communicate and exchange them across different departments.
Make the company agile. Make room for co-innovation between IT and business! Objective: facilitate bridges to innovate internally and encourage co-creativity.

Evolve from a product centric to a consumer centric model

This transformation is both an opportunity and a risk for the company. In order to differentiate themselves from Amazon, e-commerce interfaces must reflect their brand's DNA and focus on a unique user experience. To achieve this, it is necessary to change the process of design and idea generation by promoting design thinking methods.

For agencies, this is also a paradigm shift. They must be very present in the field to listen to their clients and consumers. Design methodologies are being totally rethought by integrating designers, engineers, data scientists and consultants into the same team so that everyone can contribute to the creation of services with usage value.

This agile design must allow to accelerate the processes in order to be as close as possible to the - fast- evolutions of the consumers' behavior.

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