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War rooms: The new battlefield for digital marketers

From festivals, conferences, live entertainment and sporting events to outdoor installations and initiatives, it is no secret that Australia is home to a diverse event portfolio annually. Now, more than ever, the experiences created by these events are no longer confined to ticket holders with a physical presence, but filtered through to online and social media channels as well.

The annual State of Origin series is the largest broadcast coverage of any sporting event ever in Australia and New Zealand. This, combined with its widespread consumption across online news outlets, forums, blogs, websites and social channels, presents a potentially huge audience for brands to connect with a passionate base. According to Amobee Brand Intelligence, the second game between NSW Blues and QLD Maroons drew the highest online consumption of the event – how many times the game was “seen” or “viewed”– consumption showed an exponential increase of 345% on the day of Game 2 compared to the day before. With real time insights like these, marketers now have the opportunity to align with events digitally to drive levels of engagement that were previously beyond reach.

Part of Amobee’s analysis of the State of Origin games also saw a ‘brand hierarchy’ take shape, with big names and major sponsors such as Suncorp and ANZ emerging as the brands most associated with the series. At the same time, the event also saw non-sponsors like Sportsbet leveraging the games’ popularity to inject themselves into the conversation via relevant advertising campaigns and content – to align themselves and their message in real time with consumer trends.

Indeed, the evolving nature of consumer engagement has made it all the more critical for brands to keep up with multi-screen behaviour. To stay on track and forge ahead of the competition, marketers are increasingly realising the value of aligning with online content consumption, ongoing social conversations and trending consumer interests. Making these data actionable as it happens has the potential to optimise digital campaigns, delivering more powerful and informed results.

One of the most effective and exciting ways of doing this is to create a ‘War Room’ around a specific highly trafficked event. In this dedicated environment, marketers sit alongside clients and partners ready to respond to goals, decisions and trends as they occur. As a result, this empowers teams to create digital content, commentary and relevant advertising creative, and drive engagement based on live activity – thereby reaching consumers where and when it matters the most.

Driving strategic media activations based on up-to-date information is the future of digital marketing, requiring commitment from the agency, brand and technology partner to make it a well-oiled machine.

Here are three steps to create the optimal war room:

1. Monitor real-time interests leading up to campaign launches

Having the right insights is crucial to creating the foundation for your marketing plan, and subsequently driving your creative assets and media mix. Keep on top of the data so you are well equipped to respond to the most current behaviours and sentiments, which will create a positive ripple effect.

2. Examine data presented and actively test the technology

The power of real-time marketing action lies in how well technology enables strategies and content to be deployed when it matters the most. Performance and responsiveness is a critical dimension that goes beyond function, and this core component to real-time marketing cannot be left to chance.

3. Cultivate cross-team agility for a seamless digital marketing campaign

In order to create the best possible war room environment, it is vital for creative development, targeting, delivery and real-time reporting to coincide seamlessly. The digital marketer’s success will be determined by how well a whole industry responds to the swift pace of change, especially in a war room scenario fuelled by short lead times. As a result, it is critical to have an environment that fosters creativity and teamwork, while also being comfortable to work in.

Ultimately, the influx of digital content and data calls for the need to better understand when, where and how to deliver content. Being able to monitor and gather data on content consumption provides a great opportunity for genuine engagement. This stands as the point of difference for the war room, where the human element – married with technology – delivers powerful insight that enhances the consumer experience across all channels.

Aligning the digital marketing strategy to a live feed of information puts brands in the driving seat of catering to their consumers with immediacy, simultaneously serving today’s age of ‘instant gratification’ and paving the marketing roadmap for the future.


About the author:

Liam is currently Managing Director for ANZ at Amobee, where he is responsible for managing new business opportunities and expanding strategic partnerships across the Australia and New Zealand territories. As a seasoned media professional with a passion for activating the power of digital platforms, Liam brings to the table over six years of experience leading international organisations across the US, European and Australian markets.

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Daniel Jacobs

Daniel Jacobs

Daniel Jacobs was editor of Dynamic Business.

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