New Year Resolutions for an outdated marketing professional

new-year-resolutions-for-marketing-professionals

It’s that time of the year -to make resolutions for 2015. If you are an outdated marketing professional, you have come to the right place (or the right search engine optimized landing page for the internet savvy).

I call you (and myself) outdated because the world of marketing is changing rapidly, and we need to always play catch up. Without waiting much, here are 3 new year resolutions that every outdated marketing professional must make (and stick to them, which is the tough part).

 

  1. LEARN Digital Marketing

You want to make a fresh start to your career. What’s fresher than digital marketing?. For a broader understanding of digital marketing, you can enrol for the free Inbound Marketing course offered by HubSpot and complete it online. If you want to specialize in Search or Analytics, you can take the Google AdWords or Google Analytics certification exam.  I would encourage you to subscribe to some blogs that would impact your marketing brain.

  • Seth Godin’s blog for marketing inspiration
  • Hubspot’s blog for everything from SEO to Lead generation to web design.
  • net for Web Analytics
  • Read mashable.com and techcrunch.com on a daily basis

google-reader

Tip:  Sign in to F and setup RSS feeds to have all your content in one place. Wake up to a cup of coffee (my cup of tea), and read to your heart’s content. Newspapers are now obsolete.

 

  1. THINK Digital Marketing

The world is moving online. Flipkart.com is your shopping centre, firstpost.com is your new newspaper, and gaana.com is your new radio. We are no longer bricks and air waves. Now we are bricks, clicks and bytes. If you are a marketing professional, think digital first. By first, I mean:

  • Allocate more budgets to Digital. If you are a next gen CMO / VP, do the right thing. Your job is at stake. Thinking online is your only saving grace.
  • Leverage digital as a launch medium – Launch your TVC on digital first. Coca cola did it with their Imran Khan ‘Aaj ki raat’ Coke shadow commercial in India (Disclaimer: Reprise Media did it for Coca Cola). Digital is a good medium to gauge acceptance levels of your audience. Within a few days of testing your creative, you can plan your big bang TV campaign accordingly.
  • Think about your online presence first – Buying habits of today’s generation are non-linear. Most people conduct product research online before deciding upon buying your product. Have a SEO optimized website, focus on design, generate leads, and provide efficient customer service.
  • Involve your digital team first – If you are a traditional media planner or a CXO taking care of a large media unit, it’s time to set a mandate. For all media planning and strategizing, involve your digital team. Let the experts step in. Keep turf issues aside and let digital permeate your thinking process and your teams.

newspaper-readership-decline

Tip: Google has created thinkwithgoogle.com, which offers unique insights into the marketing world.

And then there is newspaperdeathwatch.com which states that Google is now bigger than the U.S Print media industry. RIP outdated marketing folks. The end is near for those who don’t think digital first.

  1. DO Digital Marketing

Doing digital. If you have figured out the LEARN and THINK part well, this shouldn’t be as tough as you think. Some tips for doing digital marketing the right way

  • Pick the low hanging fruit, first OR Fix what’s broken: The business you work with is not perfect. It leaks revenues and needs fixes. Why not start with identifying business gaps and trying to fix them?
    • The best place to start with is your business website. Ask few customers to take a look at your website and provide honest feedback related to navigation, accessibility across devices, colour and consistency.
    • Take a deep dive into your web analytics account, a rich data mine. Look at the current traffic sources. If there is very less organic search & social traffic and most of your traffic comes from paid campaigns, you need to focus on owned media.
    • Conduct a SEO audit to understand and act upon technical and website discovery snags (http://marketing.grader.com is a good starting point).
  • Recruit & nurture digital talent: Whether it’s recruiting a digital marketing agency or recruiting digital people within your team, it’s always going to be a good bet.  Encourage senior management to accept reverse mentorship i.e. get lessons on digital media from the younger lot. Most organizations are hierarchical and training the top rung will only make your organization more welcoming to change.
  • Set an example: If you are a senior leader within your organization, you can set an example. A data driven marketing organization is formed when top level managers do things the right way. If your CEO/VP/CXO does not tweet, write a blog, or take a look at your brand’s facebook page, there is something wrong. Learn from Anand Mahindra, Sachin Bansal or Satyan Gajwani. Encourage your marketing team to generate content and engage in a dialogue with your consumers.

 

2015  is coming your way. Are you ready with your new year resolutions?

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