IN THE SPOTLIGHT

3 Ways You Can Maximize Your Multichannel Development with Trigger Systems

There are more channels than ever before to communicate your brand’s message — which can be a good thing and a bad thing. It can be super daunting to know where to start and how your strategy needs to shift, depending on which channel you are operating in. How does your message need to be tweaked from the press release to the social media ads to the guest article in a renowned industry publication? When you need to ensure that you have crafted the message that will reach the right audience on the right platform, Trigger Systems can provide a system of organizing your deliverables that will keep your plan and your campaign on track from the get-go.

What’s a Trigger System?

Don’t worry, you didn’t sleep through that webinar — we kind of made up the concept of Trigger Systems. But even if you fall asleep in the middle of this article, it’s such a simple concept, we’re confident you’ll catch up quick.

In its most basic form, a Trigger System is a communications and marketing roadmap that is already in place before you need it. Trigger Systems can be created around any recurring or semi-recurring event that your company needs to communicate about. Whenever you know that event is coming, a specific and repeatable set of marketing and PR tasks are “triggered.” This collection of tasks can include anything from press releases and website landing pages to social media ad campaigns and completely updated marketing materials — whatever tactics will maximize the success of your campaign across multiple channels.

Okay, we know that sounds painfully simple, but hear us out — When you set up a Trigger System, all the nitty-gritty thinking around what to do is already complete, so you can focus your energy on crafting a message and creative executions that truly connect with your audience.

How Trigger Systems Work

A Trigger System can be created to align with whatever event you’re communicating about. You can create Trigger Systems that are super small and specific, in response to an action taken by a customer (for instance, an abandoned cart email and retargeting ads when a customer has left items in a shopping cart), or you can create Trigger Systems that are drawn out, multi-department affairs (like the PR and marketing activities surrounding your company’s biggest trade show appearance each year). Whatever scale your communications take, Trigger Systems are flexible enough to be applicable in all types of circumstances. Below are three very different situations where Trigger Systems can help to optimize your multichannel development.

Maximize Your Retail Campaigns

The flexibility of a Trigger System pairs perfectly with retail campaigns. Retail is cyclical, but it requires specific, often seasonal variations on the same group of marketing materials. With Trigger Systems, you can create a unique plan for each type of campaign that you run. Whether it’s your standard monthly promotion, an impromptu liquidation event or a seasonal blowout, you’ll always have your roadmap ready to go. If you have a weekly 20% off sale, the associated Trigger System may be limited to an email blast and a set of pay-per-click ads. But when Black Friday or Christmas rolls around, your Trigger System could be a company-wide plan that starts six months out, and requires weekly meetings, spreadsheets and project managers to execute. Whatever the scope of your project, Trigger Systems expand or contract to meet your needs.

Strut Your Stuff at Trade Shows

Let’s get real: The ultimate aim at a trade show is to stand out. For your company booth to be the one that people just have to stop by, you have to start with stellar creative ideas that differentiate your company from all the other booths surrounding you. Trade shows are another great example of a recurring event in which Trigger Systems can create a streamlined process for executing your communications plan. In fact, you can create a Trigger System for each show, or each type of show that you attend. These might include email invitations for prospects, ads purchased on the show’s website and program, a unique landing page on your website, updated sell sheets and marketing collateral, and — of course — a show-stopping new booth design.

Give Your New Product the Release It Deserves

Whether your company releases a new product every month, or only once every other year, you should always pull out all the stops because you only get one chance for a first impression. If your company is constantly in product-release mode, you can create multi-tiered Trigger Systems that encompass the naming and branding ofnew products, as well as the initial release campaign and the general marketing strategy. This holistic thinking can produce stellar collaboration between departments that wouldn’t normally interact, and build company-wide buy-in for new products.

With so many communication channels and audience segments to worry about, it can be really easy for things to slip through the cracks, or for your creative to feel bland and generic because you’re forgetting to tailor it to each specific channel. With Trigger Systems, you can make sure all the information you need to execute successfully for each channel is contained within the plan for the tasks which need to be completed, and you can make sure that you’ve thought through how the plan works across ALL the channels.

Mike Schaffer is the CEO of Echo-Factory, Inc. Throughout the course of his career, Mike has provided strategic oversight and executive leadership for companies looking to position their businesses for growth, acquisition or both. Mike is an ongoing contributor to CSQ Magazine and a regular speaker at marketing conventions, and mentors start-ups with the USC incubator and the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator. He also organizes the largest Innovation Group in Los Angeles which meets weekly in Pasadena.

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