Silos Challenge Integrated Marketing Excellence

January 30, 2012

By Bill Duggan

A key challenge to the successful planning and execution of integrated marketing programs continues to be the existence of functional silos inside a company. However, progress seems to have been made.

For the fourth time in the past eight years, ANA has surveyed our members on their integrated marketing practices and challenges. Although functional silos continue to be a major challenge, things are improving. This was noted by 48% of respondents in the most recent survey (best yet!) - versus 59% in 2008 and 63% in both 2006 and 2003.

Marketers were asked what they have seen done at their current company, or other places they've worked, to help breakdown functional silos. Common responses were:

  • Changes in org structure to align multiple disciplines under one leader
  • Cross-training on what other functional groups do in their support of the overall goal
  • Regularly scheduled cross-functional team update meetings
  • Shared success, shared annual performance goals
  • Executive, top-down leadership support for driving integration 
  • Marketing councils that work across brands, geographies

Although not specifically mentioned in this survey, I've heard from others that open-seating floor plans with various groups "mixed-in" has also been an aid to knocking down silos.

It's certainly very encouraging that such progress has been made.

This is part of a series of recent blogs on integrated marketing. See also Measure What Matters for Integrated Marketing, The Integrated Marketing Czar and Integrated Marketing Quality Improving.




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