Since taking over The Ideal Marketing Company in January 2019, it’s fair to say I’ve been on a steep learning curve. While I have worked in marketing for years, most of my learning and development in my previous senior position at Ideal was around marketing trends and technology. In my new role, I’ve needed to learn fast about finance, insurance, contracts and HR – and of course the past year has thrown in some unexpected added learning opportunities for all of us!
Reconnecting with where it all began
Despite these challenges, I have recently carved out time to revisit marketing subjects and it has been invigorating. I got into marketing because I love it; I’m fascinated by the mind of the consumer, consumer behaviour and the technologies that allow us to communicate in an increasingly interactive and targeted way.
In my role as MD, the things that I learn help direct the company we will become in the future, the value we can provide for our clients and the difference we can make. It can be tempting after spending so much time in an industry to feel that you should know it all, but I don’t think that will ever happen for me. Just in the past year, I have studied design psychology, persuasive writing techniques and an array of subjects around content marketing.
Learning for growth
The importance of learning doesn’t just apply to me in a leadership role. As a large percentage of the work we do is in digital marketing, the whole team works in a constantly evolving field. This means as an organisation, we need to build in time for learning to keep a competitive edge and not risk falling behind. When we talk about what we’ve learned, there is usually some enthusiasm involved; maybe it’s the buzz that comes from finding out about the possibility of doing something in a new and better way. So continued learning can be as important for morale as it is for maintaining a competitive edge.
- To encourage a culture of continued learning and development we:
- Block off an hour in the calendar every week for learning
- Share with the team once a month what we have been learning or plan to learn next
- When we were able to go to events or courses we debriefed the rest of the team on what the key points were, so that everyone else knew what had been learned and we could discuss where it could be used
- Discuss training needs in every review meeting
Building trust from your clients
Investing in learning translates to investing in your clients who will ultimately benefit from your evolving expertise and in turn boost your business by recommending you to others. For example, if your business is based on providing a service to your clients, then authority and up to date expertise are crucial for building trust. Your team’s certificates and accreditations can be used in your marketing materials as ‘trust signals’ in the same way as case studies and testimonials to help anyone making a buying decision feel more confident that using your services will result in the outcome they want.
But this authority and expertise are hard to maintain if you aren’t keeping up your industry knowledge.
So my questions to you are:
- Do you feel that your industry knowledge is up to date?
- Do you have good sources of industry knowledge and news? We have some trusted sources which are invaluable.
- What piece of knowledge could change how you work and what you’re able to do?
If marketing is an area you feel you need to explore, please give us a call on 01858 44 55 43 or fill in our contact form to find out more about our free marketing review.