A Brand Management Maturity Model, Part 1: Strategy


PHOTO: Jon Tyson


Brands are defined by customer experience. But delivering a positive brand experience over time and across all customer touch points is no easy task, especially in today’s complex marketing environment.

There are many ways that customers experience your brand. Traditional interaction points like websites, call centers, email, chatbots, racks, and in-store displays are just the start. Innovations such as event-driven campaigns, programmatic advertising, purchasable media, augmented reality / virtual reality and voice assistants add even more complexity and a greater challenge to brand consistency. It’s a huge business, which is why structured content is so essential to effective brand management.

Well-managed brand assets drive effective brand experiences. They also enable more efficient distribution, better marketing automation, social media management, CRM and more. Yet many marketers don’t have the clean, accessible, and up-to-date content they need.

How do you get there? By methodically increasing the maturity of your brand management. Evolving your brand and digital asset management (DAM) will improve your customer experience and drive revenue growth. It will also help develop new products and services, speed time to market and facilitate expansion into new markets.

Maturity Models are a common tool to help drive growth and advancement. In the field of marketing technology (martech), five interconnected dimensions determine the success of the brand: strategy, people, process, technology and impact. Hardly any marketing organization is fully mature in all five dimensions. Pursuing this goal, however, will take you a long way to achieving the brand management success you desire.

This series of articles describes the steps you, as a marketer, need to take to develop and advance your brand management, using the five dimensions of martech. We’ll start with the first element: strategy.

The strategy acts as the foundation and engine of continuous improvement

Having a clearly defined strategic roadmap is the basis for successful brand management. This not only drives the improvement of your organizational vision, but also guides continuous improvement in all other martech dimensions. Yet, perhaps surprisingly, some marketers don’t take the strategy seriously – or if they do, they ignore the steps required to reach full maturity.

Some teams are reactive, relying on situations to guide their decision-making and without a clear plan in place. Others have a strategy, but it is not clearly documented or reviewed on a regular basis. More mature organizations have a written strategy that is reviewed at least once a year, while a privileged few promote their strategies outside of the marketing department by sharing with key stakeholders. These groups also report on Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that measure digital asset management performance. At the highest level, the strategy is widely implemented across the organization and executive leadership is on board.

To climb the ladder of maturity, you need initiative. A good place to start is to organize strategy workshops that facilitate ideas, set goals, and define KPIs. It is important to develop a governance document that defines clear practices and procedures for the management of the brand and digital assets. One of the most common – and necessary – KPIs is the consistent use of a DAM platform that allows your people to plan, create, manage, publish, and analyze your content.

Once you have your governance document in place, share the results with your internal and external stakeholders to create alignment. Finally, make sure your strategy is widely implemented and review your results for subsequent changes if necessary.

Related article: Why Your Strategies Fail To Create Change

3 brands at the forefront of brand management strategy

Red Wing Shoes is a great example of how to pave the way for a mature brand management strategy. Starting with a lively workshop, the shoemaker’s marketing team defined key performance indicators as well as strategies driving their entire martech stack. Three specific strategies have been established covering customer personalization, team productivity and sharing of marketing value across the organization. After successfully sharing its roadmap with stakeholders, the marketing team began to implement its program supported by a DAM platform spanning 100 users and over 60,000 assets.

Kraft Heinz has created a detailed strategy for how it creates, manages and distributes its marketing content. The global food company has taken the time not only to understand why a DAM platform is important, but also to develop a detailed business case for its implementation and development. By executing this plan, Kraft Heinz has seen lower costs, better security policies for its assets, and a significant increase in the speed at which it delivers targeted content to its consumers. He also hopes to create a source of income around many of his assets in the future.

Lands’ End, one of the early pioneers of e-commerce, has taken a major step in its digital asset management strategy by evolving its first generation DAM platform as well as its content management system and associated processes . One of the steps was to migrate data from its third-party media repositories to its DAM system, which required both a new taxonomy and the elimination of duplicate assets. By syncing Product IDs, the company has created a unique version of its digital assets, linked to both the product description / part number and sample data where applicable. It also allowed the creation of groups with the appropriate rights, roles and permissions.

Related Article: Why Digital Asset Management Is Now Officially Martech

Consistency is the key to an effective branding strategy

Consistency is the key to effective branding – and in all of these examples a DAM platform has been used to anchor the entire martech stack in support of creative and content operations. .

A number of marketing trends are contributing to the popularity of DAM systems: the demand for personalization of content based on customer behavior and interests; the need to create immersive experiences across all touchpoints; and the realization that overall brand consistency is essential. On the operations side, a DAM platform cuts costs through more efficient work processes, greater reuse of content, and reduced rework. Finally, it increases revenue through more compelling marketing, better sales support, and the ability to reach a larger audience.

In the next article, we’ll show how people can make or break branding – and how a dedicated workforce is key to optimizing brand management best practices.

Jake Athey is Vice President of Marketing and Customer Experience at Widen, where he helps organizations realize their maximum marketing potential by communicating the value of digital asset management (DAM) as part of branding and marketing strategies. marketing channels. A full member of the Content Strategy team, he oversees and manages all moving parts of content strategy, brand consistency, sales and more.

Cathy W. Howerton