Business Dictionary defines the “Silo Mentality” as a mindset present when certain departments or sectors do not wish to share information with others in the same company. Goin on to point out that [t]his type of mentality will reduce efficiency in the overall operation, reduce morale, and may contribute to the demise of a productive company culture.
In other words, marketing silos hurt your overall productivity. But in a world with “sales,” “marketing,” “development,” and “operations” departments, how can you get each team member to share the love and keep your company running at maximum efficiency?
1. Identify “Traffic Problems” in your Marketing Team Workflow
Where are you held up in getting your projects completed and your campaigns launched? Is it in approvals, or in research, or in promotion? The key to creating smoothly running teams is finding your stopgaps and providing ways to work through them. Often, the bottlenecks are caused by a team member who doesn’t even know he or she is holding up the team. Try a tool that logs the activity and progress of each member to make sure you have visibility on your workflow patterns
2. Ensure Cross-Team Messaging Unity Through Keyword and Persona Research
Do you know the kinds of customers you attract? Could you describe each persona by characteristics like age, location, primary use of your offering, or largest pain point? By knowing the answer to these questions, you create marketing messaging that fits like a glove to your target audience.
As a simple exercise, get your team together and have them run their “area of jurisdiction,” such as the website, social platform, or content library through a word cloud generator such as Wordle or WordItOut. Ideally, your teams all have the same most-used keywords. If you don’t, you have a disconnect between your team members about what words to optimize, and ultimately that means disjointed messaging.
Getting everyone on the same page about your keywords and personas means cohesion in your campaigns, giving you legitimacy, increasing your SEO visibility, and improving your ROI.
3. Determine What Can be Automated, and What Can’t
It’d be great if we could automate everything, but we simply can’t. While software can streamline your research and some of your promotion, you still have to use your brain to create masterful marketing.
So, what tasks can you eliminate to remove human error and save time? Tools that automatically identify your influencers, perform keyword research for you, track workflow, and identify back-end SEO and web errors leave you with enough time to think creatively and deliver standout marketing ideas. Just be sure your whole team can work from a single platform to ensure cohesion and accountability.
Bonus!: Think you’re too small for a content marketing team? Download our free guide, B2B Guide to Content Marketing With a Small Team, and learn the best ways to reach your key audience.
4. Create Team Cohesion with a Shared Set of Business Goals
It sounds simple, but many marketing team members pursue disparate goals. The result? No one really knows what success looks like. That means continued, non-unified marketing campaigns that perpetuate your largest obstacles, because you haven’t identified them or corrected them.
Working towards a single goal is a good start, but you must take this discipline one step further by measuring it against hard metrics. Does gaining new Twitter followers actually result in new business or sales? Does having your content posted to a Facebook page that’s seen by 10 people—the ones who’ve already elected to follow your business—actually contribute to your bottom line? Maybe these activities do, but most likely, they don’t. Having new followers or blasting an endless stream of content that’s seen by a small slice of your audience doesn’t frequently contribute to growth of your sales pipeline. Use a more meaningful metric, like opportunities added to the sales pipeline, or even deals closed, to have a crystal clear understanding of what activities in your marketing campaigns are driving ultimate success.
5. Do it All Over Again
Once a campaign is complete, it’s time to post mortem what worked, and what didn’t. Failing to do so means you lose a significant amount of value from your campaign. Do you want every campaign to be an experiment? Without measuring your successes and failures, that’s exactly what they will be. And that is a costly, time-consuming, and very ineffective way to approach marketing.
To get a clear picture on your campaign, you have to use data. It’s not enough to say, “We feel good about how that went,” because instinct isn’t what drives your sales. By identifying the best and worst parts of your campaign—and every one has those extremes, no matter how great or terrible you may have thought it was—you raise the standard of your next project, ultimately pushing your business to bigger and better frontiers.
Remember, marketing silos keep everyone from working together for a common goal. Break through the mold and help your team work as a unified force to create success in all of your campaigns.