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Marketing Resource Management (MRM): An Expert’s Guide

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11 B2B Content Ideas to Fuel your Marketing (with Examples)


In our recent study, State of Content 2022, we found that 23% of marketers surveyed intend to spend between $100K and $500K on content in the coming year — with 16% planning to spend up to $5M. 

We also found that 43% of organizations have more than 20 people involved in content operations, and 76% plan to hire even more staff to get the job done in 2022.

Exciting stuff!

But it also presents a unique challenge in terms of managing the mountain of digital assets being created every day. If this is a headache you’re all too familiar with, you’re not alone. 

In fact, there’s a whole industry dedicated to it, known as Marketing Resource Management (MRM). In this guide, we’re going to walk you through everything you need to know about MRM, including the most important features to look for when choosing a solution. 

Here’s a sneak peek of the top three MRM features:

  • Centralized digital asset management 
  • A marketing-first approach
  • Capability to support deep integrations

First, though, let’s answer some basic questions about MRM.

What is marketing resource management (MRM)?

Marketing resource management is the process of allocating marketing resources like digital assets, budgets, planning capabilities, editorial calendars, content production, creative briefs, and metrics at each stage of the marketing lifecycle from campaign planning to execution.

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MRM is conceptually similar to enterprise resource planning (ERP) in that it takes a centralized approach to resources, gathering them in a single ecosystem that’s accessible to everyone. The idea is that productivity will increase when people aren’t constantly starting from scratch. 

As marketing departments become more and more complex, MRM software is becoming a must-have tool for many companies. Which begs another question…

What’s MRM software? 

MRM software is a solution that stores all of your marketing resources in one place, often serving as the central hub or backbone of a marketing technology (MarTech) stack. 

Welcome’s MRM software, for example, allows you to centralize all your digital assets for easy discovery and reuse them across all teams and stakeholders, making it easy to create and repurpose content at scale. 

Plus, centralized requests provide a single source of truth, making management easier throughout the process and ensuring proper resource allocation for future marketing activities.

Key features an MRM system should have

In this section, we’re going to cover three key features to look for when evaluating an MRM solution for your company.

1. Integrated digital asset management 

Digital assets are pieces of marketing collateral that provide value to your organization. As a content marketer, these are typically individual pieces of content, from blog articles to graphics to podcast episodes. Other relevant marketing assets include logos, approved images, and other brand-specific visuals. 

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With that in mind, digital asset management (DAM) is the practice of organizing and tagging assets in a centralized library so everyone who needs them can easily access them. It’s one of the key features you should look for when evaluating MRM systems. 

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Theresa Regli, a strategic consultant focused on digital asset management, explains it this way: “DAM is concerned with delivering the right content to the right people, on all devices, mostly in real time, with the ability to track and measure digital asset engagement across an enterprise and its potential global reach.”

2. A marketing-first approach 

As we mentioned earlier, the idea of centrally organizing resources is not a new one. What is new, however, is the sheer number of resources that need to be managed within marketing departments. 

In fact, in that State of Content survey we mentioned earlier, we found that figuring out how to store, manage, and reuse assets is the third hardest challenge marketers face right now. 

For this reason, it’s important to choose a solution that’s designed specifically for marketing as opposed to one that has a broader audience. Marketing-specific tools are going to include features that tie everything together and make life easier for your team. 

Here are some specific features to look for: 

  • Editorial and content calendars
  • Campaign planning and execution tools
  • Customizable tasks and workflows
  • Automated work request routing
  • Content production and distribution tools
  • Asset management
  • Content editing tools
  • Performance analytics

3. Capability to support deep integrations

Try as they might, even the most comprehensive all-in-one tools won’t eliminate the need for specific point solutions. So, it’s important to find a tool that’s designed to allow deep integrations as opposed to just surface-level add-ons. 

This approach is in line with what Scott Brinker, creator of the MarTech 5000, calls the “second golden age of MarTech”. He posits that a new dynamic is emerging in the industry and that the old battle between all-in-one versus point solutions is being replaced with something more akin to an ecosystem.

In this new ecosystem, major platforms will serve as the backbone of marketing stacks, designed to be augmented with specialized apps that can plug deeply into their systems — just like Welcome. Here’s how it works: 

  • Capabilities – Welcome integrations map directly to the way your team works across the full marketing campaign and content lifecycle, helping you at every stage of the process.
  • Connectors – Welcome’s Codeless Connectors are purpose-built solutions, designed to map to common use cases and give you the freedom of choice to integrate with the tools your team uses daily.
  • Public API – Welcome’s open API extends the functionality of our Connectors, helping you push (and pull) content and data between systems — even your unique, homegrown tools.
See also  A 12-step guide for implementing a digital asset management system

How to get started with marketing resource management

Now that you know a bit more about what features MRM solutions should have, we’re going to cover a few tips on getting started. 

1. Consider your needs

Before diving into marketing resource management, it’s important to take a step back and evaluate your needs. Here are a few questions to ask your team: 

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  • How many marketing resources do we need to manage? 
  • What type of digital assets do we need to organize? 
  • How are we storing and managing our assets?
  • What does our content development process look like? 
  • How do we collaborate with each other and with outside stakeholders when developing content? Do we like this system?
  • What workflows do we have in place? How well are they working? 
  • What kind of metrics or KPIs do we use? How effective are we at measuring them? 

2. Compare your options

The next step is to see what’s out there and compare your options. Obviously, we’re a bit biased towards our own software (wink, wink) so we’ll start with that. But then we’ll take a look at some other choices in the MRM space. 

Welcome

Welcome is a marketing-specific solution that offers everything you’ll need in the way of marketing resource management. Some of the benefits of our system include the following: 

  • Welcome’s capabilities cover you across the entire marketing lifecycle. Our software supports strategic planning, content development, and performance analytics. 

  • Welcome was built specifically for marketing purposes whereas other tools were built for more general project management. 

  • From managing individual assets to planning long-term campaigns, Welcome gives you marketing automation and real-time collaboration capabilities for any scenario. 

Monday

Monday is a broad project management tool that offers a wide variety of features and a flexible user interface. However, its versatility is actually its main downside because it lacks important MRM features as a result. 

For example, Monday doesn’t offer an in-platform document library. You can integrate with an external tool that hosts your documents, but you can’t do it natively. 

Wrike

Wrike is another project management tool with broad capabilities. Unlike Monday, though, you can customize Wrike for marketing teams. They also have a solid number of features that support marketing tasks. 

The problem is that it takes quite a bit of legwork to get up and running. And since it’s not specifically designed for MRM, it’s not very intuitive to use from a marketing resource management standpoint. 

Asana

Asana is another good project management tool, but it’s geared more towards tracking assignments. While you can technically use Asana to store files, its capabilities are limited when it comes to communicating with your team and effectively managing resources. 

Trello

Trello is a good organizational tool for smaller marketing campaigns. Its easy-to-use interface takes the shape of a simple Kanban board, which is useful for tracking deadlines and individual responsibilities. However, Trello’s simplicity makes it inadequate for teams with large amounts of resources to manage or anyone looking for a more analytical tool. 

3. Always start with a free trial or demo 

Even if you’ve done all of your research and talked to all the right people, you really can’t tell if you’ve picked the right tool until you’ve tried it for yourself. Every marketing department is different, and a tool that works for one team may not be an ideal fit for another. 

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That’s why it’s always best to start with a free trial so that your team can get some firsthand experience with the MRM solution. Once everyone has used it for a bit, here are some questions to ask them: 

  • Is the tool making their job easier? 
  • How steep is the learning curve? 
  • Are they still able to use their favorite point solutions as effectively as they were before? Or is it creating more hoops to jump through? 
  • If they ran into problems, how easy was it to get in touch with customer support? 

Marketing resource management FAQs

What’s the difference between CRM and MRM?

In short, one manages customers and the other manages resources. CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management whereas MRM stands for Marketing Resource Management. Many companies use CRM software to streamline customer communication and manage leads. 

What departments are involved in MRM?

While MRM refers specifically to marketing resources, it can be helpful to many other departments in your company who need access to things like brand assets, calendars, and budgets. Such departments include finance or accounting, product development, sales, human resources, and more. 

What are marketing resources examples?

Examples of marketing resources include digital assets like brand logos, images, graphics, blog articles, podcast episodes, customers success stories, and more. They also include editorial calendars, publishing schedules, budgets, and timelines. 

Conclusion

Hopefully, this guide cleared up some of the mystery surrounding marketing resource management tools. And if we’ve convinced you to give Welcome a try, you can reach out for a free demo any time.

Best of luck out there!  



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MARKETING

Using Google Analytics 4 integrations for insights and media activations

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Using Google Analytics 4 integrations for insights and media activations

No matter which stage of Google Analytics 4 implementation you’re currently involved in, the opportunities to integrate with other products shouldn’t be overlooked. The best part is that the basic versions are free for everyone, so there are quick wins to be had if you aren’t using these yet.

Other features and reporting experiences aside, an edge that Google Analytics has over other analytics platforms is that it fits well with the Google Marketing Platform (GMP). If you’re using Google Ads, Search Ads 360, DV360, or other media tools in the suite, GA can be a hub, as well as a source in the media activation process.

GA integrations as a hub

The paid media platforms in GMP have advanced, automated reporting. These platforms are powerful tools to analyze the beginning of the user journey by drawing people to the site and to the end of the experience by converting. 

What about the middle? A solid Google Analytics implementation offers multi-step conversions, custom user behavior data and rich segment data to build and share audiences.

GA integrations as sources for insights

Google Analytics 4 isn’t just about analyzing data, it’s about acting on it. For example, the Audience feature leverages your analytics implementation — you can use the data to segment users and create audiences for remarketing, targeting, A/B testing, and personalization. 

Through settings in GA, you can also link other products and share audience and conversion data.

Below are the integrations currently available for Google Analytics 4 as of June 2022. Notice that it’s already quite a lengthy list.

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  • Google Ads.
  • BigQuery (extra costs are incurred in Google Cloud).
  • Display & Video 360 (DV360).
  • Google Ad Manager  (GAM).
  • Google Merchant Center.
  • Google Optimize. 
  • Salesforce Marketing Cloud (SFMC) (this one requires the Salesforce Journey Builder). 
  • Search Console.
  • Play integration.
  • Search Ads 360 (SA360).

The first step to building out your analytics insights is taking inventory of your GMP stack. Which products are you using right now? The products will depend on what type of site or app you have and the products in which you are investing. However, three of those integrations can apply to all properties — BigQuery, Search Console and Optimize. It doesn’t matter if you’re an advertiser, publisher, retail or service site — each of these integrations is a possibility to use today for free in Google Analytics 4. 

Let’s take a closer look at these three fundamental integrations.

BigQuery

What is BigQuery? A Google Cloud data warehouse that’s not exclusively for Google Analytics or GMP.

Who is it for? Teams and leaders that will benefit from this connection are involved in areas like BI, data science, and data administration.

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With BigQuery, you’ll have all of your data exported to a data warehouse that you own and control. Once the data is in Google Cloud, there’s freedom to send to another database, blend with data outside of Google Analytics, and perform advanced reporting in other tools. The GA BigQuery data has other benefits, including integration with CRM data.

How to integrate. The integration is self-serve within the interface, but there needs to be a BigQuery project available to link the Google Analytics tool. If you do not have a project yet, go to the Google APIs Resources page to create a new one. On the page, it looks technical and there’s code references, but that part isn’t necessary and you can skip it. The instructions for doing it through the interface are in modules in the “Console” tab. Below are the simplified steps:

  1. Select the option to create a project on the upper left of the page.
  1. Name your project, select the “Create” button, and there’s now a new project in Google Cloud. 
  2. The last step is turning on a setting to use BigQuery. There are a lot of technical options in the menu, but the only area you need to go to for this is “Library” under “APIs & Services,” where you can search for BigQuery and enable it.

After the project is created, it’s ready to be integrated with Google Analytics 4. Back in the GA interface, the option to link it is under property settings. 

Now your raw GA4 data will start collecting into the project to be available for immediate use. Out of the integrations listed here, this one has the most steps. However, the other products are just a few clicks. (Note: BigQuery comes at an extra cost. However, for most accounts it will not be significant — it is sometimes just a few dollars.) 


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Search Console

What is Search Console? It’s a platform for monitoring in-depth metrics and reports related to organic Google search performance and site speed.

Who is it for? Most teams will benefit in some way from analyzing search data. This includes content creators, SEO teams, and web developers.

How to integrate. A Search Console property must be created, and it must be verified. Sometimes this is as simple as selecting a few buttons in the interface.

Once there is a Search Console property, or once there is access to an existing property, the link is in the same menu as the BigQuery link under Property Settings.

After, organic metrics and reports that are not out-of-the-box will be available in Google Analytics 4. Once the product linking is complete and working, there’s a last step to enable GA users to benefit from the enhanced data. It may be noticeable (and possibly confusing) that the Search Console data isn’t within the default interface navigation. To see the reports, the reporting collections in the menu should be edited.

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To modify the navigation, select “Library” at the bottom of the screen:

Next, begin the process to create a collection, under Collections. The template for Search Console will be located as the bottom right option. The option to start from scratch without a template is also available.

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After saving, go back to the library area and publish your collection. The report should now be accessible from the left navigation:

Optimize

What is Optimize? Optimize is an A/B testing and personalization tool.

Who is it for? It’s for marketers, conversion rate optimization (CRO) teams, content creators, or UX leads.

How to integrate. This one isn’t as apparent as the other links. Right now, the integration option does not show up in the Google Analytics property settings. That doesn’t mean that it’s not available, it means that the linking hasn’t been done yet. 

So, instead of starting in Google Analytics, the process begins in the Optimize interface. Under Settings, navigate to the Measurement section and edit. A dropdown will be available with a list of all the properties that you have access to. Unlike the previous version of Google Analytics, the integration links to a GA data stream instead of the GA property.

Once it’s linked, the icon will show up in Google Analytics:

When the link is active, Google Analytics 4 data can be used for audience targeting, conversion optimization, and objectives.

Note: If you are already linked to a legacy Google Analytics property, check with your team to make sure that it is ok to switch it to the Google Analytics 4 data.

Read next: Is Google Analytics going away? What marketers need to know

With the integration of BigQuery, Search Console, and Optimize, anyone can advance their analytics capabilities for current or future initiatives.

Below are brief explanations of the media platforms that Google Analytics 4 can integrate with. Most of these depend on what products are in use, what vertical an organization falls under, or other specific contexts and devices. 

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Google Ads

What is Google Ads? It’s the most popular and well-known search advertising tool, formerly known as AdWords.

Who is it for? It’s for marketers, advertisers and paid media specialists.

What it does. Google Ads was one of the first products to have GA4 linking capabilities. It’s built to provide value both ways – by getting Ads metrics and reporting from Google Ads to GA and by sending audiences and getting conversions from GA to Google Ads.

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Google Analytics 4 to Google Ads linking information and instructions here.

Display & Video 360

What is DV360? It’s a programmatic advertising platform. Also referred to as a DSP, DV360 is used to bid on display ad placements on publisher/content sites.

Who is it for? It’s for marketers, advertisers and paid media specialists within enterprise organizations.

Google Analytics 4 to DV360 linking information and instructions here.

Search Ads 360

What is SA360? This is like Google Ads, but super-charged. It’s a management and bidding tool to run ads across multiple channels and search engines.

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Who is it for? It’s for marketers, advertisers and paid media specialists within enterprise organizations.

Google Analytics 4 to SA360 linking information and instructions here.

Google Ads Manager 

What is GAM? It’s an enterprise platform for publishers to manage and serve ads on their site or app.

Who is it for? Marketers, advertisers and paid media specialists within enterprise organizations.

Google Analytics 4 to GAM linking information and instructions here.

Google Merchant Center

What is Google Merchant Center? A separate platform from Google Ads to promote products, mainly on Google Shopping.

Who is it for? It’s for marketers and advertisers within an e-commerce organization.

Google Analytics 4 to Google Merchant Center linking information and instructions here.

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Salesforce Marketing Cloud

SFMC is for cross-channel digital marketers. This integration is meant for use in the SFMC Journey Builder and can bring in Google Analytics data.

Google Analytics 4 to SFMC information and instructions here (through Salesforce).

Google Play

Google Play is Google’s app store and it’s for digital marketers who analyze in-app purchases and subscriptions.

Google Analytics 4 to Google Play linking information and instructions here.

If your organization is using any of those media tools, it’s a great time to start the strategy and process of leveraging Google Analytics 4 data to enhance analysis across multiple products and teams. There’s no reason not to start since they are available to all GA4 properties.


Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily MarTech. Staff authors are listed here.


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About The Author

Samantha has been working with web analytics and implementation for over 10 years. She is a data advocate and consultant for companies ranging from small businesses to Fortune 100 corporations. As a trainer, she has led courses for over 1000 attendees over the past 6 years across the United States. Whether it’s tag management, analytics strategy, data visualization, or coding, she loves the excitement of developing bespoke solutions across a vast variety of verticals.

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