What trends are fundamentally altering marketing? And what are the implications for small businesses and professional service firms? To finds out, I attended the NJ MarCom Summer Networking Event which featured a panel discussion on this very topic. In 5 Marketing Trends that Matter – Part 1, and Part 2, I discussed three hot marketing trends:
- Using stories to cut through the clutter
- Winning the moments that matter
- Customers are in control
In this third and final post in the series, I cover the last two key trends.
Marketing Trend #4: Multidisciplinarianism – Say What?
Hiring trends are changing rapidly, said panelist Donna Zimet, branch manager at The BOSS Group, where she leads the recruiting for the creative disciplines. Team dynamics continue to shift to smaller, more nimble work teams who can work remotely. Team members are also being tasked with multi-discipline roles, giving rise to what Donna called “multidisciplinarianism”.
Echoing this theme, panelist David Blair, a digital marketing solutions executive at Google, noted that “Googliness” is a key hiring factor at Google. This is the ability to move and be conversant among different platforms – whether it’s mobile, search, etc. – and be flexible in your approach.
Donna also noted that good talent is still difficult to find, and therefore the hiring process has become lengthier. It will often include a trial period, where the candidate is brought in as a temporary worker or consultant before getting an offer for a permanent position.
Storytelling is an important interview skill. When you tell a story, a natural truth comes out. You’re not selling, you’re evoking emotion. As a job candidate, telling a story about your experiences can help you stand out from the crowd and connect to the hiring manager’s needs.
The Marketing Advantage Takeaway #1: If you are in a job or career transition, you must determine what your core skill set is, and then consider what skills are needed to round you out – become the modern-day Renaissance person. You also must practice telling your story, until it’s compelling and authentic. Don’t bore the interviewer. For more insights, check out the Ark Career Coaching blog’s “10 Questions that Will Lead to Professional Success,” and the Chameleon Resumes blog topic “Using Your Job Skills to Forge a New Career.”
Marketing Trend #5: Lines between B-to-B and B-to-C Blurring
Panelist Slade Kobran, a business-to-business strategic marketing executive in technology and business services, said that he has always had to sell the value of intangibles – get beyond the features of a particular technology. Now, Slade sees the lines blurring between the business-to-business and business-to-consumer environments. Whether B-to-B or B-to-C, today you are still marketing to people. So for example, if those people are used to getting their information from search or social media, then that’s where you need to be as a B-to-B marketer.
Because of technology, the environment is moving very fast and people think they are falling behind the curve. As B-to-B marketers, we can learn from B-to-C marketers. We can use social media to help our audiences feel less alone. We can, for example, help the small business person – offer tips, tricks, tools, etc. – so that they have what it takes to be successful.
The Marketing Advantage Takeaway #2: Look to B-to-C marketing for how to market your business more effectively today. Stories and social media are two tactics that can reach our audiences – whether individual consumers or other businesses.
What do you think? In the Comments section, tell us how the Trends that Matter have affected your business or professional career.
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