Creating a Successful MRM Project: 3 Questions for Sébastien Levy
Marketing Resource Management (MRM) solutions enable companies to streamline their marketing operations and achieve many of their marketing goals, including faster content production, better brand consistency and an improved marketing ROI. But with modules addressing different stages of the content lifecycle, from planning and storage to distribution and measurement, these comprehensive platforms require extensive planning: Which functionalities are most important to my organization? Can the MRM platform easily integrate with my IS and business applications? Who will use the system? These are just some of the questions to consider before selecting and deploying an MRM solution.
We asked Sebastien Levy, Wedia’s COO, to share his insights on what some of the best practices are for introducing an MRM project to your marketing organization.
What advice would you give others about creating a successful Marketing Resource Management project?
It is true that no two platforms are strictly the same. You must adopt a realistic project approach. This starts with excellent upstream preparation: knowing ‘who does what,’ determining ‘who needs to see what,’ knowing and optimizing your assets’ life cycle, asking users how they want to search for information, describing features of the existing approach (in IT and organizational terms), and identifying in broad terms possible uses of the MRM solution (web, social networks, press access, print, etc.).
Does this mean involving a lot of people? Rather complex, right?
Not necessarily, because the answers to these questions can be simple, fast, and in the hands of a few people. In this respect, each project is different: some implementations are very fast while others that cover more subjects require a cautious approach. This depends particularly on the number of assets, their variety, their use, the diversity of their use, and the company’s organization (number of brands, distributors, international presence, etc.). In addition, a good repository offers much more than just a photo library; it impacts – positively of course! – on several entities of the company, which sometimes discover its operational potential as the project progresses. It is therefore essential in my view, not only to involve the stakeholders upstream and downstream of the MRM platform (those who feed it, those who make it run, and those who use it), but also to use agile and iterative project methods, making it possible to develop the project quickly and with equanimity.
Nevertheless, are there practical steps to refinement?
I believe there are three that are common to all MRM projects. First of all, categorization. There is no generic classification; each realm, each brand presents its own way of searching for its assets, constraints, history, jargon, etc. Consequently, it is imperative to involve an experienced documentalist who can define metadata and categorize them in order to optimize user searches (avoid sound or documentary silence). This work is the basis for a future MRM platform.
Then comes the migration of existing data. Actually, it is sometimes necessary for assets to be collected from various systems, and for various data, or even heterogeneous media formats, to be organized. For large volumes, processing, for example vignetting photos or encoding videos, can theoretically be spread out over several weeks of calculation and require the creation of a temporary IT architecture. Of course, a database of a few thousand assets does not present the same technical issues, but it is nevertheless necessary for the correct ‘mapping’ to be applied, so as to ensure that no information is lost during migration.
Finally, the integration of the MRM platform into the company’s IS, which is an essential condition for its successful use. Upstream, in retail for example, access to the Product Information Manager (PIM) is a must. It allows for automation of all or part of the indexing, based on the knowledge of a comprehensive ‘product base.’ And downstream, the DAM module of the MRM platform is rightly very often used as a Single Source of Truth, i.e. as a guarantor of the information provided, regardless of delivery channel (web, app, social network, etc.).
By thoroughly defining your marketing and process requirements, integrating the MRM thoroughly with your existing infrastructure and involving all stakeholders, your MRM platform can efficiently bring together the technologies, people and processes of your company. Of course, the ideal platform is tailor-made, and comes with a dose of good services – including business, IT and support services – to help ensure success in the implementation as well as the post-implementation phase of your MRM project.
Want to learn more about MRM? Download our free eBook “From DAM to Marketing Resource Management” here!