As marketers, sleep can be hard to come by. We toss and turn as we think about our next email marketing campaign, brand relaunch, or logo redesign. We have nightmares about making a brand faux pas (e.g., Nationwide’s “Make Safe Happen” Super Bowl commercial). And we wake up in a cold sweat over the thought of a competitor going viral overnight with a marketing slamdunk.
A number of questions flood our restless minds, such as:
- Is my blogging strategy as effective as it can be?
- Should I hire that marketing manager who has no experience running marketing automation but has an incredibly creative mind?
- What is being said about our brand on social media?
So let’s address the top questions keeping you up at night so that you can get a little more shuteye.
Question 1: Am I doing enough on the marketing front?
With a myriad of marketing tactics — from blogging to email marketing to social media — at a marketer’s disposal, it can be easy for a professional to feel he or she is behind the eight ball. If you find yourself pondering, “What else can I do on the marketing front?” realize that the answer is “a lot.”
In fact, the average B2B and B2C marketer leverages an average of 13 and 11 content marketing tactics, respectively, according to the 2015 Content Marketing Institute benchmark report. In other words, if you’re only blogging and occasionally using social media, you are falling considerably behind. Today’s marketing efforts have to be integrated, meaning you have to find which content marketing tactics will work best for your brand and marry them together. Doing so will enable you to expand your reach.
To determine whether you need to kick your efforts into high gear, take a look at your metrics (e.g., your number of website visitors, email marketing open rates, and white paper downloads). Are your numbers static or even flatlining? In examining the figures, you will begin to see a story unfold about your overall marketing effectiveness.
Question 2: How can I better staff my marketing department?
Today’s marketing directors, CMOs, and executives increasingly understand the importance in finding top talent. Suddenly, it’s not enough to just have a marketing manager who can write a pithy press release; you need to have access to top-notch bloggers, SEO specialists, social media strategists, and brand advisors as well.
But hiring is tough. Specifically, a 2015 study by Career Builder, which surveyed more than 2,000 hiring managers in the U.S., found that, regardless of the vertical, 54 percent of hiring managers feel that finding qualified candidates has become increasingly difficult over the past five years. So how can you better staff your marketing department?
For starters, consider the advantages afforded by content marketing co-sourcing. By outsourcing specific marketing tasks to a third-party provider, you can avoid making several full-time hires yet reap the expertise these staff members would provide your department. It’s why more than 70 percent of B2B and 60 percent of B2C companies are going the outsourcing route, according to CMI. Teaming with such a provider gives you access to writers, editors, designers, and SEO specialists when the need arises.
Question 3: What do I need to consider for 2016?
Planning is well under way for 2016 already and chances are you, too, are trying to determine where your marketing focus for the new year will lay. Two avenues to begin exploring are podcasting and digital magazines, and here’s why:
- Consumers flocked to podcast sensation “Serial,” which followed the disappearance of high school senior Hae Min Lee and the subsequent arrest of her ex-boyfriend Adnan Syed, when it was released in October of 2014. Consumers love the idea of “subscribing” to episodes, series and concepts of interest to them. So try podcasting. Launch a Q&A that features a new customer each week. Or cover the top stories in your industry monthly.
- With print becoming obsolete, and digital becoming ubiquitous, digital magazines are poised for massive adoption. Would this marketing vehicle make sense for your line of business? For instance, could you create a magazine that you send to your top 100 clients each quarter as a loyalty asset?
Did I miss one of your pressing questions? If so, please let me know by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Here’s hoping you sleep more soundly tonight!
Edited by Dominick Sorrentino