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Self-Service Marketing for Distributed Brand Representatives

Self-service marketing

For consumers today—from banking to grocery store self-checkouts—self-service is king. When we can get things done ourselves as opposed to slowly and painstakingly working our way through the system, it saves all kinds of frustration, and it frees up time and energy for us to put toward other, more fulfilling efforts.

Why not apply the same principle to the efforts of distributed marketing teams? Whether you’ve got franchisees, retail branch managers, or regional sales reps needing their own localized marketing campaigns, creating and/or overseeing all of those moving pieces from the corporate level only creates logjams, duplicated efforts, and additional expenses — while further overburdening the busy central marketing team. 

To streamline and enhance local marketing strategies across distributed networks, savvy marketers are looking toward self-service options to build and execute impactful campaigns, keep a handle on both budget and burden all while empowering their brand representatives.

What Is Self-Service Marketing?

Self-service marketing is all about setting up local reps to produce and distribute the customized collateral they need for their local marketing campaigns — without jeopardizing brand integrity, messaging consistency, production quality, or compliance.

What does this look like? A brand management software—also known as a through-channel marketing automation (TCMA) platform—that centralizes everything distributed marketers could possibly need to function as high-powered CMOs for their own territories. Here are just a few of the features this platform should include:

  • A centralized repository for up-to-date brand assets
  • Modular content templates that enable “drag and drop” creation of new, customized assets with pre-approved design and language
  • Automated approval workflows to ensure compliance without the wait
  • In-platform print ordering to ensure consistent quality and controlled costs
  • Real-time tracking of budgets, inventory, and other key KPIs, at both the global and local levels

With all of these tools available at their fingertips, local marketers have everything they need to strategize and execute high-impact campaigns that both reflect corporate-approved branding and meet their unique audiences’ needs. And corporate can monitor and support these efforts without having to micromanage.

What Are the Benefits of Self-Service Marketing?

Setting up self-service capabilities for your distributed marketing team comes with a laundry list of benefits for the marketing department—and the business as a whole.

1. Increased Productivity Leads to More Opportunities Captured

By providing easy access to up-to-date brand assets and removing the friction from the approvals process, a self-service marketing platform dramatically streamlines the creation of assets. Local marketers no longer have to wait for designers to create (or, more often recreate) one-off assets. Rather, the modular content makes it easy to create customized assets with preapproved materials. For the physical campaign pieces, integration with a trusted production partner eliminates time spent researching and negotiating with providers, adding even more efficiency to the process.

All this saved time in asset production translates to quicker campaign launches. With quicker launches, representatives are able to capitalize on more opportunities by presenting their audiences with timely campaigns, every time.

2. Improved Brand Consistency & Recognition

One of the biggest challenges with a distributed marketing team is ensuring that every single campaign upholds the integrity of the brand, which is critical for building familiarity and trust with audiences. When local representatives are reinventing the wheel, drafting messaging on their own, or working with outdated materials because the latest is buried too deep in their inboxes, you run the risk of diluting the carefully curated brand.

But with self-service marketing platforms, the corporate team can rest assured that local reps will be able to adhere to approved branding guidelines and create content for every channel that aligns with the meticulously crafted messaging and design standards. This results in a cohesive brand identity across territories, boosting brand recognition and building trust among customers and potential customers.

3. Enhanced Customer (& Target Customer) Relationships

In another blog post, we talked extensively about the power of local marketing to build brand loyalty. The short version is that local marketing is a critical opportunity to make your brand a familiar part of the community, engage with local customers, and increase profits by anywhere from 25 to 95 percent.

The key to successful local marketing is allowing brand reps take the reins with self-service marketing. These tools give local reps the flexibility to tailor their campaigns, within the constraints of brand guidelines. As well as foster deeper connections with customers and target audiences, leading to stronger relationships and increased loyalty.

4. More Powerful Analytics

Real-time tracking of critical metrics is a game-changer for marketers at both the corporate and the local levels. Rather than waiting around for local brand representatives to submit their reports (which may or may not contain all the necessary data or be in the right format), corporate marketers can view up-to-date analytics anytime to monitor campaign performance metrics, from costs and inventory levels to the effectiveness of different marketing strategies. These analytics give corporate the knowledge they need to revise or maintain global strategy. And empower distributed teams to make data-driven decisions about their strategies, as well, ensuring maximum return on every marketing investment.

5. Better Budget Controls through Transparency

Effective budget management is the key to sustainability in marketing. And just like your TCMA platform provides granular reporting on campaign performance, it also allows for sharper budget control, from print production to ad spend and beyond. Real-time visibility into budget allocations and expenses — and chargebacks for local reps who exceed their budgets — empower tighter controls and more informed decisions about resource allocation at the global and local levels.

Self-service marketing leads to increased productivity, enhanced brand control, and higher impact localized marketing campaigns that build customer loyalty and drive revenue. At OneTouchPoint, we understand the stakes for distributed marketing teams. We pride ourselves on our ability to be the perfect self-service marketing partner for our clients. This is thanks to our U.Connect platform and our world-class production and distribution capabilities. As well as our team of marketing management experts who are help lift the management burden off our clients’ shoulders.

If your team is looking to embrace self-service marketing, we encourage you to learn more about OneTouchPoint today. Then, when you’re ready to talk further, request a demo. One of our experts will be happy to walk you through our platform and services.

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