Advertisers have to produce more content, faster, better and with same or less budget. They also have to choose between a wide range of different types of resources to develop many forms of content.
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The decision map can look chaotic but it’s another area where procurement can help and enable marketers to make the right choice.According to a recent joint WFA/APR study, more than 70% of members dedicate up to 30% of their annual marketing budget to content production. Forty-three per cent do not have a centralized team with visibility of all marketing content needs and there is limited collaboration among brands across the organization in three out of four cases. Eighty percent plan to review their content development approach in the near future.
With this context in mind, the WFA Sourcing Forum met in Amsterdam at Danone’s offices, bringing together 34 sourcing experts from 22 different companies to share ideas on how to effectively source content production.
Key takeouts included:
1. Moving from tactical to strategic sourcing
Content production is high on the global sourcing agenda. As highlighted by many, including Tigran Avakian, Director Global Procurement, Mattel, it is essential to define a clear procurement strategy in line with the global marketing content strategy that can be adapted to regional and local needs. What’s essential is to stop creating content for the sake of creating content and instead think of the problem you are trying to solve first.
2. Taking back control
The more transparency you desire, the more control you need to take. This is one of the reasons why members tend to go in-house. But here again, one size does not fit all. Both the type of company and type of content required will have a significant impact on the validity of producing in-house, advises APR, our WFA strategic partner for Production and guest speaker at the session.
3. Fixing the basics
What keeps some members up at night, including Barry Byrne, Senior Global Procurement Director, Sales & Marketing, Adidas, “isn’t so much about types of production models but more about getting the basics right”. The role of governance and Digital Asset Management in ensuring existing assets are accessible to explore before creating anything new is key to deciding what model you want to put in place. Don’t forget to track and secure usage rights, reinforced Traci Dunne from ISBA.
4. Engaging as much as possible with all stakeholders, both internal and external
This is one of the key enablers of efficiency and was mentioned by several attendees including Angel Cabrera, Advertising Content Production Director, Danone and Jamie Yeatman, Senior Category Manager – Brand & communication, Shell. You can’t define the right sourcing strategy if you work on your own. It’s key not just to understand the marketing strategy and your stakeholders’ needs but also how your agency partners can support you.
5. Change management & communication
The need to communicate well was highlighted by Dorien Koolen, Global Media & Marketing Procurement Director, JDE. It is important not to underestimate the importance of change management in a “very multi-branded, quite-siloed and fast-paced environment”. Making significant changes is difficult in isolation, communication will enable success.
6. Thinking out of the box and trying new things
Some members are giving more and more content projects to influencers or crowdsourcing platforms. Others now separate content strategic thinking from the creation phase. Some others leverage Dynamic Creative Optimisation (DCO) to customise their content.
7. Keeping it simple
Dedicate some of your budget to the testing of new ideas but don’t go in all directions. “Keep it simple”, advised Melissa Bank, Global Category Buyer Marketing, Heineken. Try things one by one and scale if successful.
8. Conditions are not static
Things evolve and what is appropriate today may not be as relevant next year. It is important to review the sourcing strategy regularly and ensure it is still in line with your organisation’s needs.
Content production topics will continue to be on the agenda for the Sourcing Forum over the next months. It’s also the topic for a webinar on December 12 when we will be reviewing together with APR key results from the joint member study and talking about options for choosing the right partners, setting up appropriate processes and best practices for producing more of the work you need. Please get in touch to register.
Lastly, we asked our members' views on sourcing content production. Hear from Adidas, Danone, GSK, Heineken, Jacobs Douwe Egberts, L'Oréal, Mattel, Shell and many more below:
Global brands share what keeps their procurement teams up at night
Global brands share advice for procurement teams