Blogging can be a slog in December, especially for B2Bs that don’t necessarily have the same holiday specials or campaigns as B2C businesses during the shopping frenzy. That being said, should you take a writing hiatus for the month? From an audience perspective, we wouldn’t recommend it. If you’ve been blogging regularly throughout the year, your audience expects the same frequency of posts, even during the holidays.
These days, employee brand advocacy programs are getting a lot of attention – and for good reason. When your staff members share, create and engage with your brand across their social media channels, it exponentially increases your brand’s reach. In fact, when employees share something – anything – with their social networks, each one reaches 20 times more people than a typical brand sharing with the same number of followers. But employee brand advocates offer something even more valuable than reach. Employees are powerful forces for building your brand’s trust and credibility. Put simply, members of the general public trust everyday people like themselves a lot more than they trust businesses and CEOs. A recent study by Edelman on trust and employee engagement found that employees are the most credible voices on multiple topics, including innovation, business practices, integrity and the company’s work environment.
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As the New Year is upon us, we find ourselves reflecting on the past year and those who have helped us shape our agency. To our clients and connections, we thank you for your business and continued support. Our successes together have allowed our agency to grow in two ways: 1. We've been able to grow our team of talented individuals we rely on to provide excellent service. 2. We've been able to start offering several new services including website design and videography. With a larger staff, we required a new office space to allow them the opportunity to work at their best and are excited and proud to be a part of the vibrant North Loop Neighborhood of Minneapolis.
TO SPECIALIZE OR NOT? Have you heard the Seth Godin quote "Everyone is not your customer"? Or how about this gem from Andrew Davis, "You can't be everything to everyone, but you can be something to someone"? Of course you have. We all have. Anyone who's had any business training has learned why it's important to specialize in a specific niche, vertical, geographic location or something. You can't be all things to all people, right? But if you've ever been in the position where you had to choose a specialization for your company, you know how incredibly difficult it is to actually do. It's the equivalent of picking a marriage partner for your business. How do you choose a specialization to marry if you don't know it very well yet? What if you end up hating it? What happens to your existing customers if they're not in that industry? Are you really the best company to be in that niche if you haven't done any work in it yet? Will it be profitable? The reasons to NOT specialize are endless. But you know you need to choose something. Because if you don't, it's impossible to differentiate yourself. Being the vanilla option is not what anyone aspires to. When you know or do something better than anyone else, it's much easier to articulate the value you add. It also allows you to have better margins and avoid competing on price. This is the quandry we've been going through ourselves for the better part of this year. And I am happy to say that halellujah, for better or worse, we have moved on.
In September of 2013, I packed up a couple of boxes and said goodbye to many dear colleagues after resigning at a digital marketing agency. After nearly four years working in search marketing for a variety of clients, I was craving the life of an in-house marketer. One client? Time tracking minimal, if any? Sign me up!
By now, you and your business colleagues have likely heard the buzz around Pinterest. You may have seen web headlines like, Pinterest drives sales! Or, use Pinterest and get your business found! And, there are plenty of Pinterest statistics to support these assertions. But how do you get started? The first step is to assess whether Pinterest is a right fit for your business and your target audience(s). Then, you’ll want to think about which types of boards and pins will best reflect your brand, products, and the needs and interests of your audience.
WHAT IS COMPANY CULTURE? As I learned from my nine year old's homework this week, company culture is an abstract noun. You can't touch it, can't hear it, can't see it, and can't feel it... well, at least with your fingers you can't touch it. But we all know you can definitely feel it. Most of us understand company culture to be the vision, habits, values, energy and customs which exist in the workplace. William Craig expands on this to say that company culture is also pre-existing; it's not something that changes when a new employee joins the company. It was there to begin with, even if it's a one-person show. Craig also states that the culture can grow and change over time. This change usually happens organically. But if a company is going to be recruiting, it's a good opportunity to look at the culture which is emerging and make sure you're happy with it. If any of you have been recruiting for tech talent recently, you know the pickings are slim for great people. A recent Forbes article explains why companies who don't have a talent management strategy are going to suffer. Our economy is near full employment, the war for tech talent is on and we are in a seller's market. However, there is a way to win the war for talent, and it starts with company culture.
Successful inbound markting requires having the right people on board to strategize, execute and evaluate your marketing initiatives. But success also hinges upon something else – your company culture. Customers are at the heart of your inbound strategy. And buyer personas are the tools you use to infuse customer needs, questions and issues into each and every piece of content your department produces. But if the organizational culture is overly focused on the business itself – and not the customer – then you're climbing a very steep hill.
Are you ready to add a new inbound marketing position to your team? Hiring your company’s first inbound marketer is no small task. After all, you’re on the hunt for a highly unique marketer – someone who is creative and an excellent writer, but also someone who is data-driven and highly analytical. So, to help you make the perfect inbound hire, we have a list of top 10 qualities to look for in an inbound marketer. The first half of this list contains must-have qualities, and the second half contains nice-to-have qualities.