Running the global show: 4 questions for HSBC's global head of marketing

How the global bank gets the right message to six regions around the globe.

Amanda Rendle leads global marketing at HSBC. She is based in London and runs a team that works across six markets. A recent restructuring has strengthened the company’s global marketing function.

How do you structure your marketing operations to root out inefficiencies?
We had a restructuring fairly recently that has created a strong global function alongside the teams in our six key markets.

Most of the development work is done in the central team. This team creates strategic and creative assets that can be deployed by individual markets. It’s more efficient this way. My regional marketing heads all sit on their respective business boards. This is important because they have to understand their market’s different business priorities and ensure our marketing plans reflect that.

How do you ensure consistent work across the globe that still resonates in local markets?
The central team creates toolkits, but we allow teams to make them locally relevant. That said, most of the work we produce tends to be fairly generic so it could be used anywhere.

We always have a strategy document that sits behind any campaign. For example, the campaign thought behind our recent "lift" ad was "it’s never just business." We expect local markets to use this strategy, but we recognize there may need to be some creative re-engineering.

How do you ensure you get timely feedback on a campaign’s performance in a local market?
We have a monthly global management video conference, where we have about 20 people in the room. Here, we share campaign ideas and what’s happening in the individual markets.

On top of this, the teams are speaking on a daily basis. The marketing teams in HSBC’s six regions mirror the structure of the global function. This means there is greater collaboration between the regions and the central team.

How do you incentivize your agency partners to work together?
Grey is our creative agency and Mindshare is our media agency. J Walter Thompson works on brand projects. We also have a roster of smaller agencies.

We are really clear about roles and responsibilities among the agencies. We are also playing a bigger role in orchestrating how the agencies work together.

In today’s changing world, the client has to be a lot more adept at understanding where to go to get different services.

This story originally appeared on Campaign US.

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