At NY Report’s recent Marketers Development Roundtable event, groups of marketing professionals spoke about their business and shared tips, advice, and ideas. The event was broken up into a series of discussions, culminating in a shared panel. Read on for some specific takeaways from the individual discussions moderated by Constant Contact’s Wendi Caplan-Carroll, Annie Powell, and Ellen DePasquale, and NY Report’s executive editor Daria Meoli.
To read more about the final panel discussion, click here.
To see photos from the event, click here.
What have been your biggest challenges in 2011?
- Time management
- Building and defining the company’s brand
- Getting staff on board with business development
- Social media: lack of understanding, lack of resources, how to quantify its ROI
- How to balance offline and online engagement
- How do differentiate the company in a saturated market
What is your brand and what does it look like?
- Understanding who you want to be will help you attract the type of customers you need to do business with
- It is important to be open to change, but keep that change from causing major distractions and stick to your core values
What is the psychology you are dealing with within your clients today?
- Consultants must educate their clients about marketing concepts because of a general lack of understanding
- The concept that it is not one or the other (new vs. traditional tactics) must be imparted, and it takes a while
- Client confusion over the differences between: customers/influencers/drivers for decision-making
- Clients feel that their past efforts no longer work as effectively or reliably as they once did
- Since 2008, SMBs have been focused on immediate results because of declining sales
What do your prospects want to hear from you before they agree to become customers?
- ROI, although it is imperative to get to the client’s definition of ROI and to uncover exactly what they want to achieve in the marketing efforts
- Expertise—credibility, relevance and value to turn prospects into clients
- Trust and relationships
Is there value in marketing to your current client base?
- The key is follow-through—marketing does not just include the beginning of the sales cycle, it also includes the follow-up and next steps
- People have forgotten the 80/20 rule, and find that salespeople are ready to go to the cold call list to build the pipeline
Are marketing, advertising, and sales still three different departments with a common thread?
- No—marketers have to understand the whole picture and offer creativity and experience
- Marketing needs to be defined by the client, so that consultants can either educate to create a new definition, or move forward with a proposal that makes sense for the client
What are your thoughts on social media?
- Clients need to slow down and see where they are before jumping in to social media
- Social media comes down to understanding the tool and the ROI
- The value can be imperative for research, to connect, and to generate sales leads
- It can also cause discomfort based on your level of understanding
- Social media strengthens ties with existing clients
What are your final takeaways?
- Trust is the key
- Reinforce their brand with customer support
- Stay connected
- Go back to basics
- Referrals are important
- Revive existing relationships
- Networking is king