Marketing Cloud Best Practices for Publishers | Marketing Maestros | Blogs | ANA

Marketing Cloud Best Practices for Publishers

August 3, 2021

By Jenn Choo

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The innovations in marketing technologies and platforms over the past decade have been transformational for the marketing industry. For publishers, the latest and greatest in martech software can be both groundbreaking and challenging. While innovations in marketing automation have revolutionized the order-to-cash process for media orgs across the industry, other modern marketing tech have posed challenges for marketers in the publishing world.

But why are these innovations so helpful to general marketing teams yet so challenging to publisher marketing?

In simple terms, many of the marketing platforms today are not built to accommodate the needs of publishers and their marketing teams. Lack of speed, minimal out of the box capabilities, and antiquated features and UX pose a challenge to publishing orgs in terms of marketing cloud set up, cost, reporting and continuity.

It is those that allow media org marketers to follow the current marketing cloud best practices for publishers that are assisting in publisher marketing success.


Choosing the Right Platform

Many of the marketing platforms today are not built to accommodate the needs of publishers and their marketing teams. For instance, the majority of platforms are created to host one main brand, but media companies often have a dozen or more brands under their parent company umbrella that need to be housed together but operate separately. This poses a challenge in terms of marketing cloud set up, cost, reporting and continuity.

Many of the big names in marketing cloud software today cannot be utilized by media brand marketers without a stifling amount of customization in terms of platform setup and integrations. Even with full scale custom integrations most do not satisfy the needs of publishing orgs as they can be somewhat antiquated and not optimized for the speed most publishing companies require. However, it is important to note that there are marketing cloud platforms, like Sailthru, that are configured to host publishing and media brands with ease.


Curated Content Capabilities

One of the most crucial aspects for marketers is publishing curating content. The ever growing consumer demand for digital content has bolstered the need for publisher brands to aggregate their original content with curated content from reputable sources. This provides readers with the content they demand and develops trust between them and the publisher brand.

Developing a strategy for curated content is a cornerstone for media brand marketing teams and it cannot be done without proper planning and technology with content curation capabilities.


Excellent Audience Segmentation

Audience segmentation is a critical component of marketing strategies for all marketing teams, but even more so for publishers. Because of the breath of their brand audiences, marketers in publishing orgs have another layer of segmentation to consider. This means that marketing cloud tech they utilize must allow for in depth segmentation and have the capability to automate that segmentation consistently.

Segmentation of audiences not only enables marketing teams to create appropriate messaging, it also informs curated content, customization and engagement strategies for both the publisher and their advertising clients. Without properly executed audience segmentation strategies and the marketing technology to enable it, publishers cannot succeed.


Customization Is Crucial

As best practices go, customization has ranked in the top 5 for all marketing teams for years now. Enabling a customization strategy has become more and more crucial as the inboxes and feeds of consumers have become more and more cluttered.

In other words, aggregating customized messaging is the best way to bolster engagement with audiences, which is the goal of all marketers. For publisher brand marketers, this is exponentially more important because they are striving for engagement of their brands for their parent company as well as their advertising clients. Engagement by way of customization is at the heart of multiple ROI streams for media orgs.


Drip Campaigns for Consistency

Constant and consistent messaging is another best practice for marketing teams in the publishing world. The amount of content, both editorial and media, that publishers output lends well to drip campaigns, which enable ongoing communications with audiences and increase user engagement. The difference between a drip campaign in the media industry and a standard marketing org is the sheer volume.

Tying directly back to the numerous child brands publishers house, advertising clients, curated outside content, and original content, the volume of drip campaigns publishers must output on a daily basis can seem staggering. It is imperative that the marketing cloud platform being utilized can handle the daily output and simplify the process via automations and enablement of standardized, consistent template systems.


In Short…

When it comes to the utilization of marketing cloud technologies for publishers, there are key components that must be considered in order to ensure success. From tech platform selection to curated content, audience segmentation, customization and engagement, the best practices for publishers are more complex and crucial than ever before.

Jenn Choo is senior marketing manager at Theorem.

The views and opinions expressed in Marketing Maestros are solely those of the contributor and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the ANA or imply endorsement from the ANA.

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