[Posted by Mary Beth Kemp]

Mary Beth Kemp

Our panel of marketing leaders told us they work with, on average, 16 different agencies – ranging from traditional advertising and media shops, direct marketing and database specialists, digital, PR and events agencies and so on. 

Now, my mom used to say “too many cooks spoil the soup” (no doubt because it was quieter in the kitchen without us all there).  So, I’d translate that into marketing speak by: it sure is challenging to end up with a consistent, coherent and compelling experience for consumers from all these different players.  We’ve all heard the stories of missed opportunities – the search campaign that wasn’t when the TV flight sent millions running to the web for more information; the customers who pan a company’s service during a ‘customer-first’ messaged acquisition campaign…

My mom’s right – Integrated marketing often is a feat, much like coordinating a dinner in a well-staffed, four-star restaurant.   And it no doubt takes specialists and professional ways of working, just like in that restaurant.  But do we, as an industry, really acknowledge that?

I’m currently working on a report about working well with multiple agencies to deliver integrated marketing.  I’m collecting insights and best practices from both clients and agencies. Worse practices are great too! 

If you’d like to sound off on the subject, drop me an email, or comment here. 

Which marketers seem to get integration and which ones have proven themselves lacking?  Why?  And what should agencies and marketers do to make integration more possible among all those cooks?