Best Practices for Marketing Operations Implementation & Continuation

April 7, 2017

An Aprimo implementation can seem a bit daunting from the outside. But we’ve got an insider who’s well-versed in serving up practical tips, tricks, and best practices to ensure your implementation starts – and continues – smoothly.

Meet Katie Tierney, Aprimo Concierge Services Manager, Australia. Katie was first introduced to Aprimo in 2004 as a customer working in Ernst & Young’s New York marketing department where she was tasked with sending out marketing campaigns for the multinational professional services firm. In 2006, Katie joined Team Aprimo and was responsible for customer implementations in both the US and the UK. She moved to the Concierge Services team in 2008 where she helps ensure customer success in Australia. Katie Tierney

With such a vast and varied background (she’s worked with approximately 50 different enterprise organizations in three different countries), Katie has seen it all – from colossal successes to dismal failures. She’s distilled her experience into eleven best practices to ensure your Aprimo implementation falls into the “colossal success” category.

So, the question on the mind of every admin responsible for an Aprimo implementation is this: WWKD (What Would Katie Do)?

Keep it Simple
Keep it Simple
Limit your process to 10-15 steps. An overcomplicated process workflow template scares marketers away. In fact, Katie has one customer with a successful 4-step workflow. Simplicity encourages solution application adoption.
Limit Your Options
Limit Your Options
If it’s not useful for either metrics or team member visibility, don’t add a field to your marketing application. If your organization has a field that’s often skipped or intentionally left blank, reevaluate its necessity.
Use Attachments
Use Attachments
Don’t add creative brief fields in your marketing application; use attachments instead. By nature, creative briefs are constantly changing. Instead of having to update Aprimo every time a creative brief changes – or risk having all your in-application information out-of-date – simply use attachments instead.
Stay Invested
Stay Invested
Third-party vendors will never care about your success as much as you do, so don’t rely on them to run your marketing application. Sure, there are dedicated vendors successfully assisting some of Aprimo’s customers, but that’s the exception rather than the rule. Aprimo’s Concierge Services is an offering that can continually assist and motivate you to improve your implementation and configuration processes. If you need to hire someone to oversee and run Aprimo, it’s a great organizational investment.
Nurture Your Relationships
Nurture Your Relationships
Ensure your marketing team maintains strong relationships with Finance and IT. Aprimo is a powerful tool, and marketers will have a great deal of control over running their own, independent campaigns. But a software application logically falls under some IT jurisdiction, and marketers will still need to collaborate on budgets.
Be Educated
Be Educated
Make sure all your Aprimo users have a thorough training and introduction to your marketing application. The most beneficial training comes from an “in-house” team so users feel like everyone is on the same road to success. First impressions are vital for adoption, and once users understand the “big picture” benefits, they’re much more likely to engage thoroughly. One-on-one training is important to ensure users are sufficiently informed and that the initial set-up is personalized.
Understand Why
Understand Why
User training must include the “whys.” Education that’s focused on a “click here, then there” scenario doesn’t have any meaning behind it. Aprimo is powerful and complex. If users understand how the solution can help them and why their particular processes were established, the system complexity is far less daunting.
Continue Communicating
Continue Communicating
Continue communicating Aprimo’s benefits beyond the initial training. Consider a quarterly newsletter, a “tips and tricks” update, or 6-month check-ins with each user group. When users share their learnings with each other, Aprimo’s potential continues to expand.
Run Smart Reports
Run Smart Reports
For more in-depth executive reporting, export Aprimo’s data to Tableau (or a similar platform). Aprimo has a simple FTP export that enables more complex, multi-departmental reports to be produced. The ability to share detailed campaign successes (and even failures) increases user engagement and helps senior leadership make smarter business decisions.
Share Successes
Share Successes
Use Aprimo’s dashboards and apps to mass communicate high performance campaigns and drive incentives for Aprimo use. Campaign data entry becomes much more palatable to users when it enables their wins to be easily communicated across the enterprise. Proving ROI is a win for all involved… and can even lead to an increase in marketing budgets.
Get Personal
Get Personal
Don’t rely solely on Aprimo to run your marketing. Overcomplicating the system bogs everyone down. Marketers still need to maintain personal involvement to run reports, schedule meetings, produce creative briefs, etc. Strike a balance between creative marketing and standardization to keep users from getting overwhelmed. Marketing is, after all, both an art and a science.
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