As part of our ‘Making the Complex Simple’ series, we conducted a poll to discover what’s keeping marketers awake at night.
The results provide interesting insights into the challenges faced by those responsible for managing the marketing and communications for their organisations. For some, the issues are broad: how to make better use of data and how to do more on an increasingly diminishing budget. Whilst for others, they’re more specific: how to bring a product to market, how to handle a complex communications project and how to reach employees with no access to a computer.
Topping the charts
Drum roll please, without further ado, the biggest challenge for marketing and communications professionals in our poll was… engagement.
What you can do?
When faced with any obstacle in life, it’s common sense to begin with an assessment of the problem. No one’s going to solve anything by forging blindly ahead – unless they’re one of those very annoying people who comes up smelling of roses every time.
Ask some simple, soul searching questions, no matter how dumb they seem. We ask “Why?” a lot. That’s not because we’re trying to be awkward, it’s because we know (from experience) that it’s a way to guarantee we get to the heart of the problem.
Might you be using the wrong platforms? – Take time to learn where your audiences hang-out.
Might you be alienating people by using the wrong language or tone-of-voice? – If you’d like to know more about this, read our blog.
Might you be using the wrong medium? – Our brain loves video because it is programmed to retain visual content better than a page loaded with words. According to studies, the average viewer remembers 95% of a message when it is watched, whereas only 10% when read.
Might you be failing to recognise who you’re communicating with? – Don’t worry, you may not be alone. According to an Acxiom study, nearly three quarters (74 percent) of brands cannot recognise their consumers in real time.
Do you provide your stakeholders with a means to engage? – Provide them with a platform to give you feedback and have a conversation with you – posting reviews, comments etc.
Are you responsive? – Respond in a timely manner, don’t keep people hanging on, they’ll just get frustrated with you.
Are you all give and no take? – Unless you build trust with your audience, they’re going to keep you very much at arms-length.
Have you taken the time to get to know the people you’re dealing with? – The old-fashioned shopkeepers spent time getting to know their customers as people. As Jonathan Steuer, chief research officer at Omnicom Media Group said: “Consumers across all generations want and expect the same things from brands as they do of their friends and family – reliability, authenticity, and the feeling like the brands ‘get’ them and what’s important to them at this point in their lives – whatever that point may be.”
Are you coming across as too pushy, too self-centred? – Don’t be like the person on a first date who’s only interested in themselves or who only has one thing on their mind. Be like that and it’s guaranteed you’ll have them running for the nearest escape route and into the hands of someone who is prepared to spend the time getting to know them and court them.
Have you become too reliant on digital solutions? – If you only rely on email and social media, you’ll miss out on the opportunities to pick up on those vital, subtle visual cues that can say more in a face-to-face conversation than words on a page/screen.
Take the next step on the road to a good night’s sleep.
Hopefully our blog has provided some food for thought.
Remember the old saying – a problem shared is a problem halved. Come and talk to us about the marketing or communications challenge keeping you awake at night. You never know, by working together, we might just find a solution that’ll help you get a better night’s sleep!