Do take it personally

By Kate Young, Head of Brand Strategy & Marketing at ANZ

The marketing profession is at a tipping point. Customers and their expectations are changing, new roles and new skills are coming to the fore, and the capabilities required to keep marketers at the forefront of best and next practice are continuously evolving.

While the job remains the same – connecting consumers to stories, brands and experiences – the way we do it has evolved, largely thanks to technology.

The rise of Artificial Intelligence (AI) means we will see new roles emerging in the near future, such as machine and people ethics managers, algorithm bias auditors, mood & empathy managers and master storytellers[1]. Sticky subscriptions models whose customers come back for more are also here to stay, and so are now roles such as subscription strategists.

These new roles require a mix of changing hiring profiles for new recruits, building capability and upskilling and reskilling existing team members. So how is ANZ setting up marketers for this new frontier?

Our CMO, Sweta Mehra developed the Brand Academy to help marketers reach their full potential, set them up for career growth, and prepare the organisation for the future roles and capabilities required of industry leaders in the coming years.

Needless to say the curriculum is forever evolving and we’ve just released two new modules – Storytelling for Growth and Personalisation.

Storytelling for Growth

Storytelling is at the core of Australia’s history. In Indigenous culture, it is the primary way in which history has been recorded and passed down from generation to generation.

Stories are how humans connect, learn and make sense of the world. But too often, great ideas and opportunities get lost or misunderstood. But more often than not, they are badly communicated or people aren’t ready to listen.

At ANZ, we want to help our marketers unleash their inner storytellers so they can use stories to get their ideas heard and understood. Understanding stories and storytelling is vital for anyone keen to get their insights, ideas and business opportunities understood and acted upon.

Our Storytelling for Growth module is designed to help our marketers effectively translate complex data and findings into formulating a simple, coherent and compelling story to sell in or pitch ideas all centred around growth.

We want to create growth marketers who are not just data-driven, creative but importantly know how to tell a story and bring others on the journey. This requires them to have the ability to confidently pitch to both marketing and non-marketing stakeholders, use data and insights to build a story and execute an idea, and most importantly, get people excited.

While marketing continues to evolve and grow, storytelling remains at its heart and a vital skill for all marketers to develop and build on.

Personalisation is the next frontier

With the help of technology, today we can personalise our marketing efforts to a level we couldn’t even dream of just a decade ago. The benefits of personalised experiences are clear and already well documented – great customer experiences increase satisfaction and loyalty.

As marketing continues to transform as a function, the need to personalise on a larger scale is becoming more apparent. It’s opening new possibilities for marketers. But how do we go about delivering personalised customer experiences in the right channel, at the right time? And importantly, how can we avoid hyper-personalisation becoming hyper-creepy?

At ANZ, we forever want to exceed customer expectations, for which CX excellence and personalisation are a no-brainer. We realised we needed to futureproof employees with the necessary skills to deliver personalised experiences that exceed our consumers’ changing expectations and help them meet their financial wellbeing needs.

Creating timely and relevant interactions means shifting from a product-centric to a consumer-centric approach. And for this to become a reality, cross-discipline collaboration is key – our Brand Academy personalisation module provides the common language and capability understanding for cross-functional teams to come together to deliver the customer centricity required to drive better commercial outcomes.

As marketers we must all take every opportunity to expand our skillset to ensure we build marketing programs rooted in purpose and customer centricity. But the onus also lies with senior leaders to strategically invest in their people to build a team that can plan, upskill and re-skill in preparation for this new wave of roles coming through. Organisations that support such an investment in their people, and employees that are receptive to these changes will be the ones with a leading edge.

By Kate Young, Head of customer centricity and capability at ANZ

[1] 21 Marketing Jobs of the Future

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