The year of 2016 is the year of the Superhero. New movies are breaking record box office numbers; amped up studios plan to release eight more films in 2016 alone, something never done before. People love superheroics. Clients are looking for magical powers too.
The new business year offers everyone a fresh start at the go line. Yet brand revenue goals stretch in front of us like a journey to Asgard. The path is made more difficult by Loki-like consumers, aggressive Frost Giant competitors and ever-changing rules of engagement. Globalization, innovation and digital technology have reshaped the marketing model in ways we don’t fully understand. Marketeering leaders with minds as sharp as Tony Stark will embrace the opportunity to test, refine and reiterate their strategies as quickly as possible in the year ahead.
Expanding alliances will be the ticket to CMO success; often-competing agency, media and channel partners can be harnessed into powerful alliances, dedicated to co-creating noteworthy brand strategies and fresh game plans. Expanded networks bring deeper capability to clients producing insta-brand content, delivered via multi-media platforms, anchored in analytics that reveal how to do it better the next time. Together these client-agency networks work to respond to brand calamities in market and craft illusive brand engagement magic that rivals Dr. Strange.
The hallmark of the beloved super hero league is that they tackle formidable challenges that no single super hero can withstand. They work better together. How do companies get their super-talented partners to do the same?
A HBR lesson about successful strategic alliances in joint ventures can be applied to client-agency relations:
“Successful alliances depend on the ability of individuals on both sides to work almost as if they were employed by the same company. For this kind of collaboration to occur, team members must know how their counterparts operate: how they make decisions, how they allocate resources, how they share information. That, in turn, requires a clear understanding of each partner’s organizational structure, policies and procedures, and culture and norms. The partners should use that understanding to establish guidelines for working together.”
Nick Fury Leadership
The 2016 call to action is to assemble the right league of talent, or else all is lost (ok not lost, but frustrating). Finding and engaging loyal marketing agency partners to labor along-side brand marketing teams is not done by archaic sourcing practices that produce inconsequential information. It is accomplished with acute attentiveness to the values that make partners uniquely special at what they do, albeit different from each other. Then designing the right ways to bring them together to contribute to the enterprise.
Cultural EQ is the ability to recognize, honor, and leverage core values as a means to unite a wide diversity of stakeholders with a greater sense of purpose. Cultural fit should be the lens by which companies hire talent internally. It can also be the lens by which companies recruit a roster of agency resources to come together in complex, interdependent ways.
RCG continues to help its clients recruit talent and build strong teams designed for the marketing journey.
Can we stop aliens from invading New York? You may want to call the Avengers.
Can we help companies create strong alliances for brand building, with better than ever alignment across marketing experiences, marketing operations, and marketing infrastructure?
Yes, fellow marketeers.