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Coordinating Email and Social

Coordinating a cross channel messaging strategy is complicated. Hopefully you have already defined your messaging strategies for your Subscribers, Fans, and Followers (if you haven’t you can start here with our Subscribers, Fans and Followers research paper). While the usual focus is on how to maintain a consistent message across channels, another problem is that each channel will have its own optimum delivery times.  Experienced Email Marketers have honed their strategies and know exactly which days and times are best to send for each audience (if you haven’t developed yours yet, here is a good place to start the thought process by @jkrohrs). You may have not have thought much about it, but there are good and bad times to tweet your messages as well (great post here on this topic by Jay Baer (@jaybaer Convince and Convert)) It gets more complicated when you add Facebook, Web Site content and even Mobile into the mix.

How many times have you developed your message, created the content, scheduled the deliveries and then something changes?  You are forced to delay your email delivery and now have to make sure that everything (and everyone else) changes as well. If you are using multiple systems to manage your message deliveries, coordinating all of these activities is difficult.

Coordinating multiple channels is the type of problem that we have developed the Interactive Marketing Hub (IMH) to help solve. Our Calendar feature gives you visibility into all your campaigns running and helps you save time by quickly seeing where potential conflicts occur, even if different people are developing the content.

The image below highlights the important design features of the IMH Calendar that help you coordinate your multiple message channels:

IMH Calendar

  1. Message Types – Each message type is identified with its own icon, making it easy to identify problems in a calendar filled with activity.
  2. Calendar Hover – Detail about each message is available simply by hovering over the calendar entry, helping you to identify both the specific message and the currently scheduled send time.
  3. Action Links – A link directly into the appropriate ExactTarget application takes you to the specific page where you can make whatever schedule changes are necessary.

These features combine to help you identify and fix the problem quickly, and everyone else using the Interactive Marketing Hub has access to the same calendar and the same information.  As you add more and more messaging channels to your marketing mix, a common marketing calendar, integrated with your actual message delivery systems, will become more and more valuable.

The IMH is currently in the first phase of a Beta program, and we are receiving great feedback from our customers every day. If you are interested in finding out more about the IMH, and maybe participating in the next phase of our Beta program check out www.exacttarget.com/hub.

Have a question about the Hub? Email it to us (hub@exacttarget.com), and we may feature your question on an upcoming blog or Tweet.

If you aren’t doing so already, make sure to follow us @exacttarget or the conversation on Twitter about the Interactive Marketing Hub using hashtag #ethub.

Eric Hannon is part of the Interactive Marketing Hub Team.

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