The way we work and the material we produce is changing, customers want marketing that focuses on their specific needs. It is hard to maintain brand consistency on the ad hoc locally produced collateral that internal marketing departments are producing to meet demand.
There are many companies that have to produce marketing literature in many different languages. In addition to their central marketing team, they have local marketing teams worldwide. With so many teams and people involved, and so many local literature requests, there is limited control, and sometimes central marketing don’t get to see what is going out to customers. They are in the dark when it comes to local collateral and sometimes get surprises when we they do happen to see something.
Tender documents and custom end-user marketing material are the most problematic. Local teams know the rules and have access to brand guidelines, but everyone likes to put their own spin on things. Central marketing departments often get requests to help tidy up urgent ad hoc tenders that are never part of any planned work – the demand is always sales led rather than marketing. To make matters worse, most requests use similar information but are stored in different places.
Introducing brand control
The best solution to help combat brand control is having a central online platform, for both managing and editing collateral. By centrally holding marketing collateral, which can be easily distributed or edited, helps marketing managers control document branding and content at all times. This also empowers local sales and marketing teams to be able to create their own literature, while giving managers peace of mind that they can’t produce something that waters down the brand.
There are many benefits to local brand consistency, one of the main benefits is the ability to produce custom brochures or catalogues for end-user customers, allowing tailored local brochures or catalogues to be printed on demand. With this type of system, only the relevant products or services are included, plus only the most up-to-date information is used. It allows teams to take information from various documents and combine into one complete and coherent document.
Sales and marketing teams like it because they are in control, and can see exactly what they are getting. With advances in technology it’s not all HTML coding anymore, the user interface is very simple to use and navigate. There is also real ownership in what teams have produced on their own, plus central marketing can rest easy because everything is on brand.
The benefits companies gain from having these types of systems are similar to those experienced when marketing is centralised for the first time. They save a lot of duplicated effort and only local adaptations are needed, people are no longer doing their own thing!
Companies want, and need to improve consistency of their brand message, and not only in locally produced marketing collateral. Companies want to allow countries to be able to produce bespoke customer literature and manage local customer requests, but at the same time reduce time spent doing unplanned jobs, including ad hoc tenders.
Centrally storing marketing materials and allowing master documents to be re-purposed and customised for different countries and customers, speeds up the process tenfold. It also empowers people to modify documents within the brand guidelines so they gain a real sense of ownership.