Managing a Global Marketo Instance

Over the past many years of my Marketo consulting experience, I have been lucky enough to experience the thrill of working with global clients. That is, companies whose marketing teams and marketing automation presence stretch to each corner of the world. (unrelated yet applicable thought: do you think that expression came about when everyone still thought the earth was flat…?) Anyway, I digress. What this experience has taught me more and more with each occurrence is how to effectively manage a coordinated and seamless global Marketo initiative.

In this blog post I’ll share those tidbits (not to be confused with Timbits, only the yummiest donut holes in the world. I see you, Canada!) with you as you embark on your global roll out or get yourself prepared to scale globally.

First and foremost, the entire business and each of its regions must be on board with Marketo and its benefits. This especially applies to scenarios when a business is migrating from one platform to another or mandating the same marketing automation platform across each region. Without this, and without the top-down directives, no region will eagerly make a paradigm shift to a new platform, and adoption will be negligible.

As you embark on your marketing automation strategy (either redefining and optimizing it or creating it for the first time in your business), two things are critical:

  1. Gather regional requirements and communicate, communicate, communicate the updates to each region. No one appreciates being told after the fact that a decision has been made for them that will likely affect them and their marketing efforts. Regional requirements that we have seen are things like job titles: each country or region treats job titles differently so if you are scoring on job level, be sure to ask if something like Director is indicative of a more senior role to one region than another so that you can adjust your score values accordingly.
  2. While gathering these regional requirements, don’t allow too many cooks in the kitchen. The overall global marketing automation approach must be unified and come from a single place, but can be peppered with the localizations that you obtain from each region. Be sure to communicate the definitive approach you are taking with scoring, and ask if there is anything that each region would like to tailor.

Once you have the overall approach defined and you have begun to either build or revamp, that communicate mentioned above in triplicate should not wane. Very regular conversations with each region should be taking place to stay in lockstep with each other. You should be communicating updates of the build and decisions to them, as they should be updating you with upcoming marketing efforts, questions or concerns they may have, and general feedback.

In addition to regular calls and meetings, it’s important to schedule training with each region. Translation: be prepared to travel. In fact this blog post is coming to you from flight 496 to Beijing, at a cool height of ~35,000 ft over the Bering Sea. Enabling your marketing users to be self-sufficient and gain a thorough understanding of Marketo, its benefits, how to use it, and its role in the business will only support easier and faster adoption.

By continuing the conversations you have with each region during development and by providing training, you can reinforce the value of Marketo, answer questions they may have about usage, gather ongoing feedback, continue to iterate, and stay up to date with future optimization efforts.

Providing this support to each region will help them feel included in the process and feel like their input is valued and considered. Especially since it’s rare at best to have the opportunity to connect with the individuals of the global marketing team, making the effort to proactively stay in touch with them will solidify the unification and satisfaction of the marketing operations efforts you work so hard to establish.

I wish you luck and lots of airline miles as you embark on this globalization journey that is sure to spin your marketing automation strategy on its axis. (I couldn’t resist…)

Your marketing technology experts.

At Digital Pi, we use technology to connect revenue to marketing efforts. We fuse marketing strategies, processes, data and applications to make marketing technology solutions work for clients' businesses.

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