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Reaching All Target Groups Optimally

How companies take their communication to the next level with the right sense of time, context and channels

September 02 2021Ramona Qualitz

Reaching your goal with 360° communication

360° communication has been a marketing motto for years. "360° Cloud", the T-Systems campaign, successfully embodies this approach.

How do companies communicate optimally?

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The term 360-degree communication stands for integrated measures in which specially prepared content is played at all touchpoints. The campaign spans the entire customer journey. Often enough, the same content is placed on as many channels as possible. Is this the optimum that can be achieved? No, because it takes more than that to really use this approach successfully: Companies should focus on topicality, relevance, context and synchronisation and use available tools strategically to reach their desired target group in an ideal way.

Innovation for integrated communication

T-Systems is a leader in 360° communication thanks to an own portfolio of state-of-the-art (digital) technologies, among other things. Campaigns such as "360° Cloud", which brought the now ubiquitous topic to the attention of the public some time ago, are impressive proof of this. But the T-Systems team also demonstrates its digital marketing expertise in other areas, such as the complete relaunch of the www.t-systems.com website in just 125 days thanks to agile project management.  
One of the success factors in projects like these is to identify and embrace new communication trends and channels as early as possible.  Another is to gainfully use emerging technologies and methods – such as marketing automation or agile project management – rather than just supporting them communications-wise.

Marketing for the right target group

There is obvious scope for optimization in 360° communication at many organizations. Four out of ten companies said in a study that their organizations underestimate the importance of customer data management. Almost two thirds of the respondents were also dissatisfied with their organizations’ customer data management performance and efficiency. Relevant information that would make customized communication possible if it were aggregated on customer data management platforms via the cloud, for example, is simply drifting around instead of being interconnected. 
In other words, 360° communication is an across-the-board approach with potentially high distribution losses and a poor return. Ideally, modern communication concepts don't flood all target groups with identical content that has been prepared for multiple channels. They incorporate customized content based on solid data and consider other increasingly important aspects to ensure communications are reaching target audiences via the right channel at the right time.

Content, context and potential customers

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic the importance of adapting communication measures to current context has become increasingly clear. Innovative marketing professionals with campaigns already in progress simply adapted them to the new situation to achieve contextual relevance. They captured both the contemporary zeitgeist and the interest of their customers, clearly illustrating why relevance and context are the essence of modern 360° communications.
Another excellent example is T-Systems' cloud campaign, which similarly captured the essence of the times. T-Systems very quickly identified the cloud boom that was gaining momentum in Germany. It also realized that German cloud users were concerned about issues such as data security, performance, skepticism about American cloud providers and the difficulties of choosing between private, public or hybrid clouds, so it developed the "360° Cloud" campaign to address them.
 

Content marketing with knowledge transfer

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One of the core aspects of the campaign was knowledge transfer via a ten-part webcast series with the Computerwoche magazine which ran for just over a year. "Mr. Cloud" a.k.a. Frank Strecker, Senior Vice President Public Cloud Managed Services at T-Systems, talked to experts and startups on key topics, current and future trends and cloud computing strategies. The series delivered significant added value to existing and potential customers for their individual digital transformations.

Focal topics of current relevance included the best cloud strategy, Workplace-as-a-Service, SAP HANA, Multi Cloud and Cloud Security. The webcasts were supported by the Computerwoche media and flanked with articles and communications in other key media and the T-Systems communication channels. The 360° communication campaign, with coordinated timing, content and context, ran 360° for one year.

The right communication tools

Overview of the most important communication channels and results:

  • Extensive coverage in specialist IT journals with readerships running into the millions 
  • Ten Computerwoche webcasts generating around 600 marketing contacts
  • Cover story and focus topic in the company's own customer magazine "Best Practice" with a circulation of 50,000 
  • 60 expert blog posts 
  • 40 YouTube videos
  • Multiple newsletter articles to over 30,000 recipients 
  • Social media communication via Twitter, Facebook 
  • Articles and social selling in the business networks Xing and LinkedIn

Measures with assessable success

One of the important communication outcomes are the generation of numerous CRM leads via the website. All these figures effectively illustrate how 360° campaigns are successful if, instead of simply distributing similar content across as many channels as possible, they target specific audiences with up-to-date, relevant and context-related content.

Networked corporate communication

The key to optimizing input and output is to link and interconnect content across all channels. Web links can be used for this purpose, or sharing in the social media – also with a specific focus on B2B networks such as LinkedIn or Xing. The objectives are to utilize synergies, exploit potential, attract prospects and turn them into leads and, beyond that, into deals. The timing of content distribution isn’t the only important factor when it comes to connecting with the right people; content networking also plays a decisive role. For example, the social media offer numerous opportunities to increase the visibility of your content with the company website as central anchor, from home page, to customized landing pages and expert blog posts.

With automation into the future 

T-Systems uses a clever mix of internal and external communication measures to remain at the forefront of the ICT community as one of its visionary players. But the world of communications continues to evolve, which is why T-Systems is focused on opening up new channels and using intelligent digital marketing technologies, from marketing automation and artificial intelligence to augmented reality. Companies with the far-sightedness to not only to anticipate new developments, but also to pioneer them and integrate them, will be most effective in engaging with consumers through communication, or on the customer journey,  and maintain their leading position.

Conclusion

All channels, or at least the company's own channels, should reflect the state of the art and be founded on modern design rules. Communication tools can be used to make a company's products and services visible, but also to raise awareness for its values, such as quality and innovative strength, in the public sphere. Marketing departments don’t just benefit from using modern methods such as agile work models – for undertakings such as the website development project mentioned above – they are increasingly coming to depend on them.

About the author
IM-Qualitz-Ramona

Ramona Qualitz

Senior Manager Digital Marketing & Communication, T-Systems

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