The disruptive cacophony of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Great Resignation is still ringing in the ears of many industry leaders, but those who have found their footing are realizing an important truth: it’s an especially critical time to get your message out.
Whatever happens from here, the lockdown days are over, and companies are taking stock, wondering what they should do now that we’re all out in the world again. With the long-clogged rivers of commerce starting to flow again, there’s a renewed confidence in marketing – and likewise an exciting opportunity for lead generation now that companies are spending again with a renewed sense of certainty.
Before putting together a marketing strategy, it’s important to first recognize where we are in the economic cycle. The United States passed an important milestone recently on its journey to reclaim a sense of “normalcy” with the Department of Labor reporting that all the jobs lost during the pandemic have been filled. Regardless of inflation and other macroeconomic concerns, the labor market is red hot, and those who don’t recognize what that means for the importance of visibility are likely to get burned.
In any active labor market – let alone a historically disruptive one such as this – there’s a critical need to have your brand amplified not just to the wider world, but within your industry’s own publications and social channels as well. Consider a CPA firm as an example: while the firm would certainly want to distinguish itself on the world stage, perhaps attracting business leads in relevant journals read by the CFOs of industries they’re looking to target, the sheer number of people leaving their firms right now for various reasons means there’s also an urgent need to build resilient staff. To that end, a successful firm would want to also stand out and market to its own peers – say, in accounting publications – as a way to both boost morale among its existing staff and attract new potential hires. The need to look inward and outward with simultaneous messaging is greater than ever.
Doing this right takes multi-tasking: appealing to customers, securing third-party validations, attracting investment capital, targeting and retaining talent and garnering accolades being the primary objectives for most companies. Succeeding at all of these scattered goals requires a focused approach – and a new breed of marketing agency is rising to meet the challenge.
The one-stop shop
Holistic marketing is emerging as a dominant strategy for hitting the growing demands and diminishing attention spans of markets across all industries. Now more than ever, successfully amplifying a brand requires a comprehensive blend of earned, owned and paid media.
Traditionally, it wouldn’t have been unusual to rely on separate vendors for each of these needs. However, the quickly evolving market doesn’t leave room for the cumbersome, expensive realities of working with so many different partners. Being able to handle all of these needs through a single partner not only cuts down on all the mark-ups, but also gives insight and optimization opportunities that are only possible when all parts are moving as a whole under a single point of contact.
When there’s one quarterback for these myriad tasks, there’s much less chance for miscommunication or the hiccups and missteps that can arise when everything is shopped out to a different vendor. As an added bonus, the transparency and oversight granted to the entire process allows for a new level of fine-tuning and customization to meet the business’s needs.
Going back to the accounting firm example, let’s imagine the firm shoots up the rankings in the IPA 500. This news should rightfully be communicated through all available channels, but the execution of the announcement is important. If the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing – or in this case, the press release writers and the social media team – then it’s entirely too likely for the process to be bungled at some point, pouring water on an otherwise shining accomplishment.
Successful marketing in today’s economy and environment demands a level of dexterity that traditional approaches will struggle to deliver. In this time of reassessment, companies should carefully weigh how they want to deliver their message – and who has the capability to ensure it reaches all the right eyes and ears.
About the author:
Chris Bretschger is the CEO of Bastion Amplify, a full-service Social Media Marketing, Public Relations, Digital, and Development agency based in California. He is an innovative marketer with nearly 15 years of experience in digital marketing developing brand-building online strategies as well as managing SEO/SEM, analytics, and online media. As a digital strategist, understanding culture and context is equally important to the content and the channel. With extensive experience in interactive creative, media, as well as social media and public relations, Chris applies both a specialist’s understanding and a generalist’s application of marketing in a digital world. His range of experience stems from having worked for various agencies and clients in a broad base of industries that include Mazda North American Operations as their Manager of Online and Social Media, Doner Advertising on Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion Cuisine, Mazda and others, as well as West Marine, Jenny Craig, Adidas Golf, Kia, Hyundai, and VW.