The key to creating a stirring conversation at an early morning meeting – aside from fuelling the participants with copious amounts of caffeinated beverages – is tabling a topic of shared interest in front of a vibrant group of professionals.
Such was the case when an impressive array of marketers and communicators from the Canadian Federal Government, Crown Corporations, and non-profits were brought together to discuss the challenges they face when attempting to engage citizens through digital marketing at a breakfast think tank held in conjunction with the 2013 Adobe Government Assembly.
With no fewer than 18 government departments represented at the table, the discussion commenced following introductions. Session moderator Mark Emond of Demand Spring kick-started the conversation by asking the group what digital marketing and the associated outreach meant to the departments in attendance.
An enthusiastic exchange of ideas
Very quickly, the group’s interest in the topic was evident and an enthusiastic exchange of ideas was under way. From a historical perspective, the initial mandate of government on the web was to move every print-available communication online – automatically – regardless of suitability. But, did we still need printed communication? And what of Canadians without online access to digital resources?
What was clear was that digital marketing wasn’t the end game, but a means by which the government could ensure its greatest reach and be inclusive to all its constituents, a notion tabled by Adobe VP of Brand Marketing John Travis and seconded by the group in its entirety.