When employed in the corporate world I recall vividly going through some of the first diversity training workshops put on by the company. These were all focused around the women versus men working together topic and the relevant issues which arose from that.
As things progressed the voices of individuals from the other many dimensions of diversity started to be heard and; now it is clearly acknowledged that we need to pay attention to employees from all of the dimensions Of diversity in order to craft out effective diversity strategies which lead organizations developing and maintaining a competitive advantage in the marketplace.
Workplace Diversity Classifications
So what are these dimensions Of Diversity of which we speak? Well, there are many and here are some to consider …
Experiences growing up location wise
These dimensions Of diversity lead to us acting in a particular fashion and carrying out our day to day work activities in our own particular style.
Each individual whilst acting within their particular style according to their view of the world have the basic needs of being appreciated and acknowledged. Their ideas of how a company should design and develop and product or service and; sell that product or service into the marketplace need to be incorporated into the decision making process. This is especially important when we bear in mind that the organization’s products and services are being sold into an ever increasing diverse marketplace.
Diversity Management Leadership
With the makeup of the typical management structures of today’s companies it is critical to have the structure and processes in place which ensure that effective career progression, recognition, acknowledgment and reward for all employees. The higher level management will need to go through relevant training and to fully embrace diversity with the lead of the human resources department.
The way this is implemented will of course differ from organization to organization but we may well see management spending time with individuals in order to understand the world from their point of view. This could take the form of one of meetings and/or social events. However I would advise a mentoring / mentee relationship which gives both parties a view into each others world.
It may be the case that a high level corporate manager comes from a middle class background, attended private schools and went straight through to a prestigious university and from there through various programs is managing as expected. And it must be said, is well equipped to do so. However, this individual may well have no real life experience of dealing with members of the community that are not like themselves so, when they are faced with dealing with individuals like this within the workplace they are left outside of their comfort zones.
In the same organization you may have some other well educated individuals from say the black and ethnic minority communities who is very talented however, the manager may not have life experience of dealing with this type of individual.
(The above is for illustration purposes only, we could use an example where the managers are strictly religious and have to deal with employees who are well capable and may be in a gay relationship this could cause the manager not to value that individual and in turn that individual’s career may not be progressed as it otherwise would have and the company ends up not running in the most efficient way)
The way this individual’s ideas, suggestions and opinions are processed due to the manager’s bias may lead to inefficient development and marketing strategies. These will all in turn lead onto the company not operating in an as efficient a manner as it otherwise would be if all of the quality ideas and suggestions were taken on board.
This illustrated some of my thought processes behind devising an effective diversity strategy in bringing together the management team, human resources and individuals from the differing dimensions of diversity in order to improve company efficiency and overall employee satisfaction as well as enhancing the company’s competitive advantage.
With the needs, wants and desires of the customer continuing to change and evolve there is a corresponding impact on the company looking to get its message through to intended market segments. Those of you have watched some of my videos in the past or read my writings will be well aware that I form marketing campaigns and programmes around three main pillars i.e.
… of course within each pillar there are many variations to be considered but for the purposes of this article let’s focus in on the ever increasing important role that Digital Marketing has to play in promoting, branding and advertising the company.
With that said; it is important to note that I consider Digital Marketing as what it actually is and that is “another [ok it is a critically important one] channel to market [means of connecting with the customer] such as …
… and others in order to gain market intelligence and to educate and nurture the customer taking them through the marketing funnel each step taking the closer to become a paying client.
So back to the customer and the challenges that the company has when it is looking to continually develop and execute marketing campaigns.
First we have the larger companies that [may] have fully staffed marketing departments with marketing professionals that are able to keep up with the ever changing digital marketing landscape as well as looking at how the customer reacts to content, information, marketing and advertising so that however they end up viewing the brand of the company along with the associated products and services culminates in them favouring them over the competitors.
On the other hand we have organisations that maybe do not have a defined marketing department or, whose marketing is being taken care of as a side job or in addition to someone’s task; it may also be that the marketing’s task has been given to someone who may not be defined as a full blown marketing professional [not that someone who is not a marketing professional cannot perform the marketing task] – but the point being made is that at times we are need of falling back on disciplined marketing fundamentals in order to deal with the constant change within the [digital] marketing landscape.
When it comes to Digital Marketing we conveniently divide the activities into Search Engine Marketing and Social Media Marketing. Within the two we have to deal with trends, content creation, video marketing, email marketing, podcasting, image / graphics marketing, blogging and more activities that have to be executed on a daily basis in order to keep up. In addition to this if a company [without a dedicated digital marketing professional] comes up against a company with a fully functioning marketing department it may be fighting losing battle.
The function of any business is to service its active set of clients and that is where the area of expertise will lie. In this technology enabled world most companies know that they need to have a website – even though there are many companies out there in the world who still do not even have a website for their business !! Company owners also know that the internet has a big part to play in making sure people actually know about the products and services that they have to offer.
This leads us on to how marketing and the ongoing development of business strategies have changed over time. This leaves business owners with a decision to make, spend the time learning about all of the complexities of pushing the marketing message of their company out to the internet or, bring in outside consultants [such as Stephen C Campbell Consulting] to look at their top level business strategies first, and from thereon look to be able to develop an internet strategy that will incorporate the [more traditional non internet] existing business strategies with what must be done online.
As it stands at the time of writing we are seeing a shift from the dominance of online Search Engine Optimization to that of the ‘votes that any company receives in terms of online reputation and reviews based on the comments and feedback given to the company online by its previous and existing clientele.
We are also seeing a major shift towards mobile, that is to say – the number of people accessing the internet from mobile devices will overtake that of the desktop very soon. So how does the business owner cope with just these two [major] shifts ?? With all that there is to learn in the world of Mobile Apps development and Mobile Optimized Website design, the standard business would have to diver their attention from their core competencies.
At times a company can afford to hire an expert which works at times but very often leaves the company at a disadvantage as this person becomes locked into industry specific activities and modes of operation.
As we run in house strategic level business training in the fields of :-
Business To Business Branding
Internet Strategy Development [how to incorporate with existing strategies]
… we have seen our service business grow as more and more companies need the internet marketing based benefits such as
Search Engine Optimization
Reputation Management and Marketing
Mobile Websites Design
Text Message Marketing
Mobile Apps for Business
… to propel their operations forward. We see the growth in the future of acting as the marketing arm of businesses as we have the inhouse expertise of the core services as well as the know how of blending the online activities with what needs to be done on the internet.
It is what we consider to be exciting times when it comes to our own company’s marketing strategy development as well as what we see when working to build the businesses of the organizations that we partner with.
Looking to make more use of the internet in your business ? do you have a website that was implemented by a designer and you have not yet seen any real changes in your business in terms of …
Online Reputation Management
Customer Satisfaction Rating
…. then feel free to get in touch with us so we can have a conversation to see how/where we can work with you to help your business grow.
Google is expected to release an early version of the operating system for computers and cellphones next year and the final version in 2017, according to The Wall Street Journal. This makes interesting reading while we look at Google’s decision and that which lies behind it so, let’s take some time to consider and expand. There is of course method and marketing strategy behind all that Google does, the company continually accumulates data and the profile of end users that interacts with its products and services.
The Android operating system being developed for smart phones and mobile devices represents one of the growth areas in terms of hardware device purchases which directly relates to the widespread usage of the Android operating system. Android of course is utilised by many mobile phone manufacturers such as Samsung which gives it a truly wide market acceptance and penetration.
The move marks an effort at Google to reduce the number of independent platforms it has to maintain, sources said.
This forms two main functions as we see it, a) helping Google with its operations b) providing excellence for its target market sectors and users. Points that can be raised can be centred around what functions and processes exist within your business that can be streamlined for the purpose of making your business processes more efficient, this will enable the business to get more done with a given set of resources as well as producing more, operational savings are often seen leading to increased overall profits.
As for your target market sectors, Google can be seen to be making steps that will result in a more pleasing customer experience with the impending merger of the operating systems mentioned. Irrespective of what one thinks about Google itself or indeed the decision to merge the Chrome & Android operating systems.
One of the areas of focus for many companies is that of reputation management marketing, this essentially focuses on what is being said about the company at large in the digital media sphere by the company itself, the media as well as the consumers of products and services sold into the marketplace by the marketing organisation. This ties directly into the widespread employment and usage of digital marketing and social media agencies that company’s use to execute services such as reputation management marketing on their behalf.
There are for sure lessons that we can learn for serving the customer better and for getting more out of the operations that exist within our businesses; we believe it makes good sense to learn from the likes of Google when it comes to business, operations and marketing excellence.
BT Group’s takeover of mobile phone network EE has been provisionally cleared by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). The CMA said the £12.5bn deal, first announced in February, was “not expected to result in a substantial lessening of competition” in the UK”. BT shares were up 3% at midday in the wake of the CMA statement. The deal is set to create a communications giant covering fixed-line phones, broadband, mobile and TV. The takeover more than trebles BT’s retail customers adding the 10 million it already had to EE’s 24.5 million direct mobile subscribers.
This causes us to look at things from a digital marketing agency perspective in relation to the development of digital marketing channels and in particular the adoption of mobile marketing strategies as we see the widespread use of technology, mobile devices and smart phones. The business fundamental of Channel marketing looks at the avenues that any company will adopt to connect with target market customers, with EE’s customer base added to BT’s technology one can imagine how the mobile marketing channel will become more and more refined from that which we see today.
The continued adoption of the faster 4G network allows effortless usage of ….. Video marketing
Social media marketing SMS text message marketing
….. all of which for the most part are accessed via the mobile devices of the consumer at large, this in turn is presenting the opportunity for companies to develop and execute specific marketing strategies that have been targeted for the mobile devices.
Whether the business that you run or work for is looking to develop specific marketing strategies that are focused around mobile, for sure the more targeted the marketing strategy is the more success and effectiveness will result from the marketing campaigns whether they be for lead generation, brand building, immediate purchase leading to the growth of the company in terms of market awareness and revenue growth.
“It is great that they also notice that electric cars will be cheaper to run,” Pearson said to Go Ultra Low, which conducted a survey of 800 teens, who indicated a preference for electric cars. So interesting to see how things are shaping up for the future as we continue to push forwards the boundaries of technologies and its applications come to play in our every day lives. Of course, one of the main driving forces behind the current and future increases in the use of electric cars is that of the capacity of batteries, its ability to charge and to release its energies.
Technological advances have also been shown to affect our lives with the increase and reach of the usage of the internet, this has lead to the redefinition of what call channel marketing … we can now add a new marketing channel to the marketing mix which we term the digital marketing channel …
Channel marketing comes in two forms
A channel to communicate to target market segments
A channel to deliver products and services to those target market segments
The evolution of the internet has given to the social media & digital marketing agency that sits alongside the other ways [marketing channels] that companies had been using to reach clients. In considering the title of this post, it makes sense to consider what marketing will look like in 11 years time !!
Will there be a need for businesses to sign up for a digital marketing newsletter and will there be such a need for the expert business strategy consultant that companies bring in to help them to accelerate with their business growth ? For sure we assume that in the near future there will be an increased need for branding digital strategy development and execution as we see that the digital marketing channel has grown and will continue to be one of the major marketing channels that businesses all over the world make use of to use their products and services to make an impact with their chosen target market segments.
So as the demand for electric cars look set to increase we can also consider how the consumer will develop preferences for how companies communicate with them and how they consume that which they purchase from companies, how much of a part will digital media and social social media marketing have to play in that which companies do as dictated by the wants and needs of the consumer.
One thing is for sure, channel marketing will continue to evolve, and companies will continue to look for the most effective ways that they can use to most effectively increase their business through sales of products and services and the wide spreading message of the brand.
The third-quarter growth figure of 6.9 percent, as reported by China’s National Bureau of Statistics, was a decline from the first half of the fiscal year, and the country’s lowest since 2009.
This post is of particular interest to me and brings back memories of consulting and training in China with one of the world’s leading watch designers and manufacturers as they looked to take full advantage of digital marketing to reach their intended target market segments. During the time I spent in Shanghai we indeed discussed macro economic dependencies i.e. China’s GDP growth and how that relates to the amount of money consumers have to spend on good and services related to the client’s core offerings.
In relation to our UK Digital Marketing Agency when consulting with clients we attempt to at all times to provide a consultative approach when developing digital marketing and social media campaigns for our clients. It is interesting to note though how many companies and business leaders actually do not take a tops down, market driven, supply & demand approach to …
The Category Marketing Positioning Of Their Products/Services
… as more and more of the marketing attention and focus is put into Digital Strategies and often a ‘shot gun’ approach undertaken, it has become more important to look at the viability of the market as dictated by the overall economic growth and this feeds down into what people are able to spend in the marketplace at large.
As China’s economy is seeming to stutter, we will have to wait to see how the knock on effect ripples over into the western economies and as a consequence end up having eight a positive or negative impact on our own business or on the company that we are employees for.
The use of the internet for marketing is of course one of the topics that is always on the agenda of the executives and management of companies worldwide. Due to the complexities of digital marketing, social media, search engine marketing, reputation management, search engine marketing and more. We see that many companies are wisely making use of digital marketing agencies in order to ensure that they get the most out of this complex form of marketing.
So what are some of the things that businesses should look for and be aware of when it comes to selecting and working with a digital marketing services company [such as our sister company Capid Houser]. In reference to the social media and digital marketing campaigns service offering that Capid Houser executes for businesses there are a number of components that we feel are of the utmost importance. One of the main aspects of digital media marketing for business is to ensure that all activities are trackable and this is accomplished through the use of a Customer Relationship Management system that analyses and details responses to paid advertising, email marketing and posts.
The creation of relevant and engaging content always poses a problem and this is accomplished as we analyse some of the most successful and engaging social media campaigns within a particular market category, and then use this as a basis for creating and posting the best content that is applicable to the market sector of the clients using the system.
One of the most common questions that I get asked by those who are starting out in business; also by those who have been involved in business maybe for some time who maybe running a functioning business and making a decent living is : ‘just how to I actually go about developing a marketing strategy’ ??
At a recent networking event when speaking a business owner who by his own admission if well versed in the technology of his business (but not in the marketing) I spoke of the three pillars that I use when thinking about, explaining and developing a marketing or business strategy. They are :-
Channels To Market
… that is to say, we work on defining the category of the market that the Product or Service fits into, we then work on the marketing Channels. When it comes to channels we consider the channel that we use to deliver the product or service to the marketplace and secondly the channels that we use to push the message to the marker place through. And finally, we have to ensure that our preferred market segments are at the end of the channels that we use. That is the essence of the framework that I work through when refining and developing a marketing strategy.
Now, let’s assume we are you are selling massage therapy services [as one of my previous clients were]. For sure the channel for delivering the service would be in the therapist’s salon but they business owner will have many options in terms of channel marketing for delivering the branding message and services of the business to the market place at large. They can use direct mail, blogging, mobile, articles, newspapers, radio and more to deliver their message to the target market.
Next, we need to ensure that our product/service is positioned appropriately in terms of location, offering and pricing – a particular segment of the market may wish to pay say $15/hour for a massage but other high end clients may be perfectly happy to pay $100/hour if they see the value in what it is that you have to offer. The question is – which market segment is it that you will choose to target ? If this discussion we have covered the market segments and the category of the market that we wish to be positioned in.
So there you have it – an insight into my methodology for developing marketing strategies whether working with $multi billion clients in China [Swatch Group] or with a wedding reception services business such as http://www.lowcostchaircovers.co.uk/ that I consulted for last year.
In summary we want to be thinking of Channels, Market Segments and Product/Service categories.
To your marketing strategy development success,
Let me know if you wish to engage with myself and the team to assist you in your business.
As a business strategy consulting working with businesses from multiple market sectors on an international basis there are certain trends that are so dominant that for ongoing consulting and training sessions I cannot help but point them out.
One of these trends is the astounding use of mobile devices (smart phones, iPads, tablet computers & other mobile devices) by the population at large. Of course it could be pointed out that this is mainly for personal & social purposes; however – the business person must also consider those business purchasers looking for information (as we consider business to business marketing) and; those end user clients who are out searching for news and information using their mobile devices. Given the small screen size, it is becoming critical not to present searchers with a full blow website but with the reduced options given by your business mobile website.
One of the things to point out is that for those searching for news and information using their mobile devices is that they probably are not looking to read essays on your company, latest press releases and full length biographies concerning your business’ executive staff.
More to the point is that they wish to contact your company and find out where you are located. Granted, in some cases it may be that internet searchers are looking for detailed information but for the purpose of the mobile website – I am of the opinion that ‘less is more’. That is to say – when it comes to the options given on a mobile website, present the user with contact details and location information as a basis and; give them the option to access the full blow business wesbite as well.
As a business strategy consultant I am pointing out the fact that the options presented in your mobile marketing business website should be a subset of your ongoing business strategy (not an afterthought or something passed on to someone in the company who has some technical information & knowhow !).
What we call a ‘tap to call’ mobile marketing wesbite will be sufficient for the majority of businesses; this would in most cases have location map details included allowing the searcher to easily contact your company (and will have the option to access your full website).
Managers and business leaders – please do not relegate the decision making regarding the mobile business website that your company must have down to the technical staff. Bring the decision and strategy direction up to the business level discussions where revenue generation is being considered and how the company can bring more customers into the marketing funnel.
Mobile marketing business strategy is included as a full session in my consulting and training work – if you’d like to engage with a consultant with an international perspective and experience in working with multiple blue chip organisations, feel free to get in touch in order to discuss your business and internet [including mobile] marketing strategy today.