For the past few years, I had the priv­i­lege to head up the Adobe Cam­paign mar­ket­ing orga­ni­za­tion and direct many mar­ket­ing cam­paigns. Although each effort was unique (and of course bril­liant), I have dis­cov­ered that there are three com­mon tenents to mak­ing your cam­paign a suc­cess. So here they are, my three secrets to a suc­cess­ful campaign.

Estab­lish an Emo­tional Connection

Whether you have a B2B or B2C mar­ket­ing cam­paign, it is impor­tant to remem­ber that peo­ple don’t just buy what you do, but why you do it (Simon Sinek’s golden cir­cle). That means that in order for cus­tomers to embrace your brand you have to con­nect with them on an emo­tional, and not just prag­matic, level. When mar­ket­ing tech, it is easy for com­pa­nies to focus on speeds and feeds—what your prod­uct does—and for­get that in order to break through you need to make peo­ple feel some­thing. Jim Sten­gel, for­mer CMO and global mar­ket­ing offi­cer at Proc­ter & Gam­ble, has iden­ti­fied five core intrin­sic human val­ues that stim­u­late an emo­tional bond between cus­tomers and a brand:

  1. Inspir­ing joy
  2. Mak­ing a connection
  3. Encour­ag­ing exploration
  4. Pro­mot­ing pride
  5. Chang­ing the world

Accord­ing to Sten­gel, at the core of every sin­gle company’s suc­cess is its abil­ity to deliver on at least one of those five intrin­sic human val­ues. I have to con­cur; in my expe­ri­ence every suc­cess­ful cam­paign I have ever done has deliv­ered on one of the above values.

Cre­ate a Seam­less Cus­tomer Experience

Once you’ve cho­sen your emo­tional hook, you need a great cre­ative idea to bring your cam­paign to life. Great cre­ative can­not be under­es­ti­mated; it is what gets you noticed and allows you to break through. But just hav­ing a great cre­ative con­cept is not enough.  You need to sur­round your cus­tomer and ensure that through all touch points and chan­nels you deliver a near ideal expe­ri­ence that delights your customer.

This is not easy, and one thing that has worked for us is devel­op­ing cus­tomer jour­ney walls. We lit­er­ally go old school for this, and pin up each of our touch points on a wall so we can get a holis­tic view of what the cus­tomer sees as they inter­act with our cam­paign. It is the only way that we can get a com­plete view of what we are putting the cus­tomer through (and trust me it is not always pretty). This allows us to make sure that the cus­tomer expe­ri­ence is straight­for­ward, inte­grated, and frankly makes sense.

Embrace Big Data

Our mantra at Adobe is “Mar­ket­ing by the Num­bers,” and we have adopted a rig­or­ous three-step process of how we do this:

1. Dur­ing the plan­ning stage, we use econo­met­ric mod­el­ing to fore­cast how much we should spend to reach a given rev­enue tar­get. This goes hand in hand with Mix opti­miza­tion to deter­mine how to allo­cate mar­ket­ing dol­lars to spe­cific activ­i­ties such as PR, social, search, dis­play, event, etc. to achieve the most effi­cient and effec­tive mar­ket­ing mix.

2. Once we launch, we can mea­sure every­thing and any­thing. At this stage it is impor­tant to set your goals care­fully, how­ever, or you will be over­whelmed by data. Spend extra time defin­ing your KPIs, and since most of us man­age what we mea­sure, you can ensure you are opti­miz­ing the right things to hit your KPIs and achieve the most for the dollar.

3. Once the cam­paign is hit­ting its stride, we are able to move beyond in-process met­rics (such as traf­fic, con­ver­sion, etc.) and quan­tify our impact on busi­ness results such as the per­cent of pipeline sourced, or the con­tri­bu­tion to rev­enue, and prove the ROI we are dri­ving for the company.

Estab­lish­ing an emo­tional con­nec­tion, deliv­er­ing an inte­grated and seam­less cus­tomer expe­ri­ence, and “mar­ket­ing by the num­bers” have been my secrets to a suc­cess­ful cam­paign. What has worked for you? I would love to hear from you and be let in on your secret.