Systems can be an ally or a saboteur. It all comes back to how you implement new tools, track your data, and personalize your content. Each component affects the results of your campaigns and the impact of your reach.
In this episode, we interview Britney Young, Marketing Operations at McKesson, about the constant juggling act that is marketing operations.
Join us as we discuss:
- Personalizing email marketing via data
- The difference between small vs large companies
- Key characteristics of an operations marketer
- Critical components to consider when adjusting systems
“As you start making things more personal and connecting, you have to also pay attention to details. Make sure your data is good.” — Britney Young
Personalizing Email Marketing via Data
It’s tempting to jump right into selling your product in email marketing, but consider ways you could show interest in your customer first.
“It doesn't necessarily have to be the biggest, most complex form of personalization,” said Britney.
Even adding someone's name to the greeting can do a lot for a personable touch.
However, Britney also cautions to triple-check your data. She shared the unfortunate case of an email going out with the greeting “Hi, deceased” due to unchecked data. Avoid emailing deceased leads by:
- Triple checking your data
- Knowing your data silos (what are you missing? What do you have access to?)
- Make a roadmap for how to access the information you need
“That's where I see the whole dating aspect. It's very similar. If you're trying to get to know someone, get to know a person.” said Britney.
The correlation between building customer connections and dating isn’t new. It’s worth remembering because it’s true. How boring would it be if someone only talked about how great they were through an entire date and showed little to no interest in learning about you?
I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t go out with them again.
“When you take the time to understand their job and learn what a day in their life is like, it makes it a lot easier when you're trying to communicate requests.” — Britney Young
The Difference Between Small vs Large Companies
According to Britney—who has worked in a variety of company sizes—one of the key differences is access to tools and personnel.
“A lot of times at a small organization, you probably have access to all the tools, all the people you need,” said Britney, thinking back to her time on a more compact team. “I was close with our IT folks. I knew all the people who worked on our marketing.”
There’s a camaraderie in smaller teams that lends to ease of collaboration. Of course, that comes with cons.
“One of the disadvantages is you may have access to everything, but you might not have all the resources you need.” continued Briteny.
On the other side of the coin…
“At a larger organization, the advantage would be you actually have those resources, and you likely won't be a one-woman or one-man show,” Britney explained.
The other side of having enough people for everything is that you’ll no longer have access to every corner of the company, and that will take some getting used to if you’ve come from a tighter operation.
“Some may find that difficult or challenging if you like to have your hands in everything. That may be seen as a disadvantage in a large organization because you just can't. Everyone has their own job. You have to let that part go.”
“It’s a change in mindset, and it's not just being able to communicate that, but actually getting people to think differently.— Britney Young
Key Characteristics of an Operations Marketer
I asked Britney to share her views on the key characteristics for marketing ops. She shared five mindsets that will support success in the role:
1 - Big Picture Thinking
Think about situations from the prospect and onboarding perspective. How can you connect with them beyond an email promotion?
“Just thinking outside of the box and thinking about your customers holistically, and seeing how marketing operations could be that partner to help you do that,” said Britney.
2 - Open Communication
Open communication is critical to success in marketing operations and beyond. Having transparent and effective conversations is what supports growth.
People today value transparency more than ever. Tactful open communication can make a world of difference in response rates.
3 - Genuine Curiosity
Show sincere interest in customers and team members alike. What do they need to succeed?
Seek to understand the whole picture. You may not think of curiosity as an asset, but it’s one of the driving forces of marketing operations. If you aren’t curious, you aren't discovering and exploring. Experimentation is a sizable part of the job.
4 - Attention to Detail
Triple check your names, addresses, grammar, and visuals. Small slip-ups can result in avalanches of emails.
Details can also mean paying attention to specifics about your customers. What are their pain points? How do they spend their time?
5 - Problem Solving Mentality
Push on doors, pull on ropes, look around every corner. Approach each problem with curiosity and confidence.
When you’re in the business of connecting with people, there will be problems. It’s a given. That means a problem-solving approach vs a defeatist approach will spell the difference between viable solutions and band-aid repairs.
Critical Components to Consider When Adjusting Systems
Britney also shared her top considerations when evaluating new tools:
- Understand the tools you have and what’s compatible with them
- Research what it would take to leave a tool if it’s not a fit before you adopt
- Ask yourself “If we left tomorrow, what would that look like?”
Catch more of Britney’s insights on episode 9 of The Art of Marketing Operations!