IDG has decided to consolidate its marketing services programs across three divisions into one group called IDG Strategic Marketing Services. This puts the company in a better position to scale an operation that now accounts for 25-30 percent of gross billings, says Matthew Yorke, CEO of IDG Enterprise.
Yorke says the separate marketing services teams were beginning to replicate skill sets and best practices were getting lost in the shuffle.
"We’ve got a lot of resources spread throughout the business, but we didn’t always get to share best practices," he says. "The groups tended to approach their markets in different ways and we were developing disparate best practices."
Further, adds Yorke, the different marketing services teams were building competing programs. Proposals were sometimes being sent to the same prospect.
"The real driver is that the world we live in today is one of scale," he says. "It made sense to create one best-in-class group instead of having multiple groups with different resources."
Marketing services teams from IDG Consumer & SMB, IDG Enterprise and IDG TechNetwork will be combined under the new umbrella, resulting in a 50-person group.
The new operation is structured around six core competencies:
• A marketing services R&D lab called Studio Six
• Product and Process Management, which focuses on portfolio development and process execution
• Program Architecture, which builds the client program strategy and structure
• Content Works, which focuses on content strategy and production
• Creative Labs, the design team, focusing on user experience and engagement
• Performance Marketing, which is tasked with data analysis and performance optimization
Each of these groups will have a team leader, reporting to Charles Lee, senior vice president and general manager of IDG Strategic Marketing Services.
Yorke says the new structure will enable the overall marketing services business to scale more quickly.
As of now, the business accounts for "tens of millions" in billings, he says. In the IDG Enterprise group, for example, marketing services grew to account for close to 50 percent of revenues. "For the entire U.S. business," adds Yorke, "25-30 percent of gross billings are marketing services aligned. It’s a big group and one of the reasons we made the change. It’s absolutely a place where we expect the growth to come from."