first 100 days framework for marketers

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First 100 Days

Today, on day 99 of Donald Trump’s presidency, we are launching our ‘First 100 Days’ offering.

The Marketing Society recently reported that the average tenure for UK CMO’s is now only 18 months – for some this is down to choice – for others it’s the result of pressure from the board for marketing to deliver tangible results quickly.

Getting on with the job is important, but shooting from the hip and cracking under demands to ‘just do it’ is a short-sighted approach that can lead to a shortened tenure.

Meanwhile, agencies, partners and even internal teams can often be slow to get behind a new leader’s vision or appreciate their urgency.

Consequently, the first 100 days in the role can be pivotal for a marketing leader to put the foundations in place for both immediate and future success.

Our First 100 Days offering is intended to achieve just this.

First 100 Days is a framework to realise key landmarks that every marketing leader should be aiming to achieve within the early stages of their tenure.

The framework has four main streams that deliver these landmarks within a 100-day timeframe:

  1. Customer – a full understanding of your audience, clearly segmented and developed personas that are integrated into your CRM for sales, marketing and customer services.
  2. Positioning – a powerful and compelling position in market that resonates across your key audiences, allowing you to stand apart from the competition.
  3. Activity – campaigns that land the positioning with your core audiences aligned with their customer journey and channels of choice.
  4. Experience – the digital, physical, sales and content experience each audience has with the brand to realise quick wins and make every touch point with the brand seamless.

Our First 100 Days roadmap to success below shows how each stream develops over the century.

The key landmarks are indicated by their associated icons and pink background, whilst the eagle-eyed will see how the flow of each stream is very particular where one area impacts another to ensure a smooth yet well-informed way of working that leads to great results in the shortest timeframe.

First 100 Days framework

If you are a marketing leader starting a new role, or maybe a marketer who wants to bring this framework into your business, feel free to get in touch at for a no-obligation discussion.

twitter performance

Twitter text image stat

On the 19th September 2016, Twitter finally implemented changes to the content it counts within its 140 character limit.

This means you no longer use up any characters when posting either native video, images or GIFs.

Now that including richer content doesn’t come at a cost of 23 characters, you have to choose which of these three content formats will drive the greatest engagement (retweets and likes in the case of Twitter).

In recent best practice releases, Twitter has helped marketers by providing guidance (though sometimes in quite a cryptic fashion) as to how various different content formats perform on the platform.

Here at Pretty Pragmatic, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to make sense of this in as simple a manner as possible (no cryptic stuff here!).

Twitter Content Engagement

So, the numbers behind this (and their sources):

Twitter recently released research stating “videos are six times more likely to be Retweeted than photos and three times more likely than GIFs” (see bullet point 4 at the bottom of the article).

Whilst prior to that, Twitter had stated that tweets with images generate 313% more engagement than tweets that are solely text.

Therefore we can boil it down to the image above, and create a hierarchy of performance between the various different content formats on Twitter.

As these stats are platform wide, there’s no accommodating for different personas and audience segments (to help you with that, we’ve shared our persona development structure here).

It’s worth bearing in mind that the response to different content, especially for niche audiences, can vary significantly to these numbers from broad audience research.

We’d also recommend taking a look at our content mapping structure. There you’ll see the best practice of how to structure your various marketing content, be it on Twitter or elsewhere, in a customer-centric manner through the customer journey.

And there you have it, a league table of the content formats now available for you to post on Twitter that no longer come with a cost of characters in your tweets.

make more of your content

Content marketing

For most of this decade, the term content has become synonymous with marketing.

Frequently used to vaguely refer to marketing ‘stuff’, nicely covering the breadth of agency outputs used to fuel an increasing spectrum of digital platforms.

Videos, infographics, images with statements on, images without statements on, vignettes, whitepapers, advertorials…even the dreaded microsite gets thrown into the ‘content’ bucket.

In the process of content becoming king, it seems many have noticed that there is an absence of effectiveness. That filling the bucket with more content isn’t necessarily correlating with an increase in customer attention, retention, or sales.

A recent report from TrackMaven found that marketer’s content creation over the course of 2015 increased by 35 percent, whilst engagement fell by 17 percent.

When one piece of content doesn’t deliver a return the habit can be to make another piece in an attempt to fulfil its role. However, it is often more beneficial to re-evaluate the use of the content instead of the actual content itself.

Would it be more effective in an alternative format, distributed through other channels, or promoted at a different time?

To do this, we suggest taking a step back to audit your existing content against your different audience’s needs.

We’ve found the model below allows you to re-evaluate your content in reference to the customer journey (a broad example of which is applied to the boxes running across the top of this framework):

content mapping framework

The framework has 4 core areas that should be created for each audience persona:

Mindset: What is the top level thought that the customer has at that point if you asked them to articulate it in a sentence? This is simple but provides the foundation for the elements that follow.

Questions: What do they want to know? This covers both the broader category, your brand and the product or service. What will they find useful to know that will help them progress to the next mindset?

Channels: Where would their attention be at this stage? Is it something they will be proactively looking for or are they likely to be passive and need the content presented to them? This should also indicate when different channels fit into their routine – which platforms have their attention during the various stages of their day?

Content: Finally, we come to what content helps answer those questions, based on their mindset, and aligned to the channels and times of day that they will be willing to give the content due consideration. This then, aligned to the audience persona, defines the format the content should take in order to match the audience’s profile.

Once the framework is complete, evaluate is against your existing content, specifically the ‘Questions’ and ‘Mindset’. If you’re answering those areas with the content you currently have then the challenge is actually the format, channel, context and distribution of the content.

It’s here where you can ‘recycle’ the content you have in a way that the audience will find more valuable, which in turn will deliver greater effectiveness as it gains the attention required to shape consideration.

This approach has proven to be very successful for our clients, with the strategies and content outputs that have been developed winning awards from both B2B and B2C industry bodies.

Social media management

When embarking on a social media strategy, classic planning principles still apply, so having an audience-centric approach will allow you to create the best customer experience.

Setting commercial objectives and relevant measurements in advance will allow you to gauge what success looks like and how that compares with other marketing channels and tactics.

Our ethos is that businesses need to design from purpose through to profit. Therefore, brand and commercial objectives need to be connected via a solid social approach.

Over 90% of marketers state that social media is important to their brand and whether a presence exists, needs to be focussed, re-energised or scaled; our straightforward approach works through from insight to action to ensure maximum effectiveness and consistency.

The Pretty Pragmatic Social System

PP social model

At the core of any sound social approach is a situational analysis which includes foundational research using social media tools. This is essential for assessing the opportunity and determining the best strategy to deliver against business objectives.

Once this is carried out (and it needn’t take long), it then supports:

1. Insights (green section):

Insights form the base of a sound social strategy. Starting with the audience to define personas and behaviour traits, through to category and reviewing competitors, before defining how that transfers into behaviour and trends in social channels.

Relevant reach is key, so care needs to be taken when considering channels and their etiquette for audiences. Whilst Facebook and Twitter top the subscriber volumes, 30% of Millennials state that Instagram is their second social media channel of choice. 94% of B2B marketers use LinkedIn to post content, and sales people frequently state that LinkedIn is best for appointment setting.

2. Framework (yellow section):

Creating a framework that defines the way you engage and why – from tone and behaviour to regularity and topics that deliver the highest impact – is critical for successful interactions. Some of the core components of a comprehensive framework are as follows:

The tone of action can be reflected through a clear social media mission statement where the purpose of interactions in social media (and the respective channels) can be stated.

Communications cadence is required to set the frequency and content ratios.

Editorial calendars should guide topics as well as take into account what’s trending in the industry and within your relevant conversations.

3. Guidance (blue section):

Using public platforms can be daunting for wider teams – what could they suggest and how should they get involved? These elements make it clear and easy to maximise participation and consistency across the business to sustain focus on key business objectives.

Providing messaging examples makes editing and personalising messages easier for teams. These should be built around best practices to maximise effectiveness. For example, tweets containing 110 characters or less receive 17% higher engagement.

Mapped content with clear call to actions (where necessary) helps to feed these content-hungry channels. Buyer journey maps and persona understanding allow more accurate guidance to drive relevant and effective communications.

Leading on from the guidelines; rules of engagement need to be clear in terms of SLAs, crisis management, escalation processes, promotional content, influencer engagement and scheduling posts – all of which need to be well-documented and adhered to.

4. Activation (pink section):

Activation means having the right content created, the right people aligned, and the right channels managed and promoted to deliver success.

Content types for social media vary in term of effectiveness. Again this really depends on the audience and channel. For example, list posts perform well in terms of shares on LinkedIn, gaining 22.45% social media traction. There are also gender nuances with research indicating females are more likely to share content that makes them appear intelligent, compared to men who wanted to appear funny. Frequently content and messaging already exists within the organisation that can be repositioned and reformatted to fuel your social content engine.

Ensuring all the right people are aligned and understand their role in the social system is important for a cohesive, results orientated approach. Bring together brand marketers, service operations, sales teams, executives and PR to ensure everyone understands their role and a consistent approach and presence is in place.

Finally, channel management ensures real-time, daily and ongoing engagement and responsiveness from brands. Posting previews, pre-approved content and ongoing collaboration ensure these channels are on brand and on purpose.