$14bn to $1bn – How Integration can make your Marketing Budget Go Further


We have all been there, trying to create a campaign with cut through, that will engage and excite an audience, only to be horribly outspent by a competitor with seemingly endless pockets.  Where ever you are, they are there, but in triplicate.

One great example of this is the situation that Apple, LG and the other electronics giants are facing.

Over the past 4 years they have been outspent by at least 4:1 on marketing by Samsung. Samsung spend approx 5.4% of their annual revenue on marketing vs Apples 0.6%. So in this situation what can you do?

The blatantly obvious, smack you in the face answer is that you have to get more for less, optimise what you do, ensure that your campaigns are fully integrated and so deliver the most amount of value possible. And that is a lot easier said than done…

And that is exactly what Apple have done. In the face of huge spend from Samsung they have still sustained brand and product awareness, consumer engagement and despite limited budgets in comparison to their main competitor.

I am not going to wax lyrical about how they have done this as it has been covered in numerous articles and blogs but in short, a strong brand, identity and clear processes sustained over years have enabled them to deliver comms that are instantly recognisable at every touch point.

And at Flock, helping clients deliver integrated marketing activity, improving cut through and making your budgets work harder for you is what we specialise in.

So here are a few little tips, that will help improve your marketing integration, improve your overall effectiveness and to reduce your cost base.

  1. Develop an environment where creativity is rewarded, hold some budget back that can be spent on ‘good ideas’
  2. Invest in understanding your consumer – if your idea resonates with them the return will surpass that of your competitors.
  3. Bridge departmental silos – try to break through the interdepartmental issues and buck passing to collectively take control and ownership of your offer and communication.  Share thinking and information rather than stick to the mantra ‘knowledge is power’
  4. Drive marketing integration through and across your agencies.  Share thinking, assets, tools, research and resources, develop collective goals and ensure that everyone has a level of responsibility for delivering against these.
  5. Focus on the big ideas – these are the ones that can translate across a multitude of channels and will work harder for you.
  6. Really understand what the local markets need, and deliver this so that you are maximising the take up of all globally / regionally produced assets
  7. Don not forget the owned and earned media.  At one company I worked for, the marketing team was so obsessed with the TV and ATL creation that it is own, very popular channels were always an afterthought as they were deemed to be less glamorous.
  8. Use your people – a company’s people are one of its most powerful assets.  Use them to spread the word, share the work and evangelise about the product (and this should not be limited to the sales people)
  9. If you are changing your agency take the opportunity to re-assess the agency ecosystem and re-engineer this to work harder for you.
  10. Measure, measure, measure – if it works, do it some more, if it does not then tweak it, change it, develop it until you get the results you need

So if you are losing sleep because you are being outspent by an aggressive competitor and you are not sure how to compete or even if you just need another pair of hands to help with the delivery of more integrated marketing give us a call, we would be delighted to help.

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