Fair warning — this is a really tasty, high calorie post!
Over the past several weeks one of BMC’s valued customers has been using its online community to support a national fundraising campaign involving more than 2 million members and volunteers. To support such a large-scale effort, the organization generates a substantial amount of content including online sales tutorials and training, member-generated video, marketing materials, independent research and… nutritional information for Thin Mint cookies. That organization, of course, is the Girl Scouts USA (GSUSA).
This scene is likely familiar to many of you – either door-to-door or in front of a local groceries and shopping centers, more than 1.5 million girl scouts recently ventured out into their respective communities to sell cookies to friends, family members and neighbors as part of the organization’s annual fundraising effort, which also doubles as an opportunity for scouts to learn valuable real-world lessons in money management, ethics and leadership, among other skills.
On February 8, Girl Scouts USA (GSUSA) celebrated National Girl Scout Cookie Day. While everyone is aware of the scouts’ delectable cookies what may surprise you is the collaboration between its IT and marketing teams, particularly around its web property GirlScouts.org.
As you know, marketers are increasingly becoming primary consumers of technology within large enterprises due in large part to the changing nature of communications. For an organization like the GSUSA, the ability to generate and distribute timely and quality content could mean the difference between millions of dollars in revenues, not to mention the publicity (and subsequent purchases / new member sign-ups) created from dozens of news articles originating from content-hungry press.
More and more, leading marketers are engaging with IT early in the planning process to communicate exactly what will take place within any given campaign, including sharing any technical dependencies, expected fluctuations in traffic and content strategy. This foresight not only allows IT to work proactively, but it also exposes new opportunities to be more nimble and avoid critical issues caused by “surprise” downtime/maintenance.
Remember, as the marketing organizations obtains more influence over technology purchase decisions, its responsibility to clearly and proactively communicate plans to the IT department grows as well. Because if something breaks and you didn’t do your part, it won’t be enough to say, “well, that’s just the way the cookie crumbles.”
And in case you were wondering, my all-time favorite Girl Scout cookie is actually one of their newer ones:
The Shout Out!
These postings are my own and do not necessarily represent BMC's position, strategies, or opinion.