Getting Real About Real-Time Marketing #5: The End of the War Room

The following is part of a series of blog posts related to 2013’s hottest point of social discussion—real-time marketing. This is the second post in the series. The first post is here. The second post is here. The third post is here. The fourth post is here.

The latest “Getting Real About Real-Time Marketing” post discussed three types of real-time marketing, one being opportunistic.

Oreo executed opportunistic real-time marketing exceptionally well during the Super Bowl. It woke the industry up to the possibilities, and the combination of a massive real-time event being watched by millions (the Super Bowl), the lights going out as a fluke and having a team ready to respond is one that will not come around again any time soon.

The Oreo team knew they were going to do something. They just didn’t know what. This required having a war room set up that included agency and brand people in the same room the night of the Super Bowl along with other executives on-call by email. It took a combination of reviews and approvals before they were able to capitalize on the opportunity.

It was a marketing feat that will be cited for many years to come. It’s just the beginning, and brands can try to make lightning strike twice or evolve their approaches to capitalize on any moment in time.

From Temporal to Constant

Consumers are moving faster, and brands are trying desperately to keep up. Oreo set up a war room to move quickly, but that was temporary. The next day everyone went back to their regular jobs. The new marketing landscape demands constant responsiveness and connectivity. The era of the war room is nearly over. The era of permission and integration is here.

Constant connectivity requires organizations to think differently about how ideas and executions go to market. It requires employees being empowered to identify opportunities and permission to act on them on an ongoing basis. It also entails having a support system across the organization with everyone knowing that in a moment’s notice they may be required to weigh in on something.

It’s an overwhelming proposition for most organizations, but we’re in an era in which consumers are ahead of marketers. They’re nimbler, smarter and not about to wait around for a brand to create, review, rework and launch a message.