January 2, 2019
Pay attention to the finer details. This was the first lesson I learnt in business. As an enthusiastic placement student, I was left to man the fort for a week, which was a great experience. All was well until I sent out an email declaring a big event at the Teesside office (with the wrong date and missing out an ‘e’ from the word Teesside). The next week I’d recovered and accepted that everyone makes the odd grammatical mistake. I definitely learnt from this.
Take care of your team so that they provide great client service. The rest should fall into place.
Surround yourself with people who have different skills and learn from them. You can’t be good at everything and it’s great to have people who are better than you at different things.
Find people who are willing to go that extra mile. The most important thing for marketing (or any team, in fact) is finding the right person who is really keen and wants to learn.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Marketing changes every day and not everything will go to plan all the time. When PR and events are involved, there’s always a lot of room for error and elements you can’t control. But you should try new things, give new ideas a go and always learn from any idea or venture, measure the outputs and try it differently next time. Experiment with new designs, try out innovative software and test new ways of communicating with your clients – just make sure you can admit when things didn’t go to plan.
Keep learning. Marketing is changing so quickly, and so many traditional theories and tools are becoming obsolete. All marketing people should aim to learn something new or explore new online tools every day if they can or at least once a week! I genuinely think, as years go by, the roles that separate elements of marketing will start to tail off. A good marketer should be able to do social and digital and storytelling and PR. Yes, you will outsource elements and have in-house specialists, but I think a good marketer should be able to, at the very least, understand every element and be able to implement most aspects of modern communication strategies. I’d also advise marketers to understand financials, budgets and measurements – it’s the only way to communicate.
Create a good online presence. It gets noisy on LinkedIn and online, with people shouting about how great their businesses are. What always stands out for me are the businesses who don’t shout at all. The businesses who have clients communicating how great they are instead, or their team or business community – those are the ones who really stand out. Make sure your team creates a good online presence to drive visibility, clear messaging and targeted communications.
Give your team ownership. My team tells me how they want to manage their projects, and they do it, which gives them ownership and freedom to control their own workload. They enjoy training courses, managing their days and being in and out of the office for events and meetings. We also talk every day about things working well and things they would like to change.
Never expect anyone to do something in business that you wouldn’t do yourself. The quickest way to make someone feel undervalued is to treat them less than equal. Making tea or running errands or doing the rubbish jobs is a team role; pull together and everyone can pull in the same direction.