Many small enterprises and startups are developing new products, services and solutions they plan to market and sell. However, small organizations may lack the internal resources needed to develop and deploy an integrated “go-to-market” strategy that will ensure success. Instead, they struggle with defining and managing all the various deliverables needed for an impactful and effective product launch.
Within a newer business, stakeholders are an essential asset for its continued success, as their input and engagement with the company can spur the company on to future achievements or potentially help locate additional resources, as well as offer insights into new opportunities for growth or different approaches to standing problems.
Reb Risty Hi I’m Reb Risty, Head REBL at REBL Marketing and I am here today with my good friend, Amber Gough, and we’re here to talk a little bit about her business and how she uses her referral network to market herself. Thanks, Amber for joining me today.
Amber Gough Thank you for having me.
Reb Risty So, can you tell us a little bit about what your business is and what you do?
How to align your candidates with your company
Amber Gough I’m the founder of Talent Fusion Point which is a purpose driven recruiting and consulting firm. What I mean by purpose (which everyone always wants to know what that means and how that differentiates me from other recruiters and consultants in the talent acquisition space) is that I seek to align candidates that are not just with competency and skills that you need for the job but also character which means values alignment. So, who are you as a company? Do you know your value system and your mission in your higher purpose? And how do we find the right candidates and match that. The benefits of that are tremendous, including impacting your bottom line in many ways. So better retention, that people are happier, or they want to stay longer, they’re more loyal and more innovative and more creative because they’re bought into that higher purpose and the mission at hand and what you’re trying to do as a company. So, a lot of different benefits of doing that. That’s the main, main differentiator for me is that I really align people and on a deeper level.
Reb Risty Yeah, that’s great. I don’t really hear a lot of recruiters talking about that your skill set, skill set but, so how do you figure out if the potential employee candidate aligns with the company’s culture? Is it a test? Do you ask questions?
Skillset vs. Culture
Amber Gough That’s a great question. Recruiters always use behavioral style interview questions but what I do is, of course I get to know my clients. So, I do a culture assessment of them and their company. Who are they what makes them tick, what are their values and how do they show up in the workplace? So, I interview my clients in many ways. And then I match that with the candidate. So, I will take that shift the questions into what we’ll address and discover that and uncover that in a candidate. And then we take those and compare them, and determine whether or not they’re good, not only competency of course, competency must be there and that’s first,
Is the company the right fit for the candidate?
Reb Risty Okay.I feel it goes both ways, how do you find a good client? How do you know they’re the right culture and fit for a candidate that you’re looking for?
Amber Gough That’s a really good question, typically through referral. I mean I get most of my business comes through referral based in connecting with people they know, working well with my clients making a difference for them, and then they want to make a big impact for one of their friends who has a business or someone that they know in their network. So very much so through referral base.
How do you build a referral network?
Reb Risty Great, great. Well, so the marketing question for you is in your business obviously its very relationship based. How do you build your referral network? How are you going out in marketing yourself to grow your business?
Amber Gough I am a big believer in and connecting with people. And so when I am out networking whether it be through just socializing or in a formal networking setting I really strive to be very present. And so in the moment with the person – a matter of fact, my logo is a symbol for presence – and I believe so firmly I show up authentically and I, if I’m listening to someone, really hearing them, what’s what their concerns are, what they’re really – what their actual needs are, and connecting them with it as people. Then I’m able to serve them better, at whether that be through my business or referring to them to somebody else or what have you. So, I think that my ability to just show up and show someone that I care and that I’m really there with them in that moment, builds trust and people are more likely to refer people to me.
Reb Risty Yeah, yeah. You know another good way to build trust is through webinars. So Amber was just sharing with me, that you’ve had some success with that. I’d love to hear about what you’re doing, what your approach is with webinars.
Amber Gough Absolutely. I was fortunate enough that through networking and connecting with someone. One of my friends, I built that trust, and she said you know, and she does a lot of webinars speaker, author, and she said you need to be teaching webinars. And she connected me with a few organizations that are H.R. (human resources base) which is very big in my industry and my primary contact, and connected me in. And fortunately, they set it up. It’s very seamless and easy it only takes my time essentially in building out the PowerPoint presentation and the content in which I’m teaching, and then I’m able to present to as many as, my most recent webinar 800 people dialed in across the nation.
Reb Risty Wow.
Leverage Webinars and give free advise
Amber Gough Yeah. Huge, huge footprint. And then others can actually access that as well through going to their website. I can present that content. It’s fantastic. And through that typically at the end of the webinar throughout it you’re offering some sort of freebie so it might be a survey or some way of analyzing purpose, you know alignment with a candidate in a company and then they reach out to you. It opens the door to a conversation and you’re able to oftentimes convert that into clients. So, it’s really powerful. Plus, it’s fun. If you’re talking about something, you’re passionate about and enjoy it can be really, really fun as well. So, I love it.
Reb Risty That’s great, yeah. That’s some great advice. I know obviously video as we’re doing now podcasting, webinars are becoming more popular because people are just seeking information in a, I think in a different way, and they’re trying to educate themselves, first, before they make decisions. So that’s really, really neat. I love to hear that’s working.
Amber Gough Absolutely and it’s such a differentiator of being a subject matter expert too. Like this is what I know this is what I can do. I’m a subject matter expert so people are more likely to come to you, and it kind of builds that trust.
Amber Gough It’s really powerful.
Reb Risty Right. Well, you heard it here. Content, subject matter expert, referral network, are all very important, especially in professional services. Amber if somebody wants to contact you learn more about what you’re doing or how you’re doing, how, what’s the best way to reach you?
Amber Gough Number one for recruiters: LinkedIn, always. Just look up “Amber Gough | G-O-U-G-H” or of course my website and my email which is talentfusionpoint.com and my email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Social media should be part of your integrated marketing plan
Social media should be part of your integrated marketing plan
Reb Risty Hi I’m Reb Risty, Head REBL at REBL Marketing, and I’m here today with April Ball, our Social Media Specialist. We’re going to talk to you about why social media is important for your business. April, how are you?
April Ball Doing well, thank you.
Reb Risty Good. Can you tell us a little bit about your approach with social media?
April Ball Absolutely. You know I take a very tailored approach to all of my clients. I go in and I talk to them and figure out what their goals and objectives are, and together we come up with a strategic plan and whether it should be organic, or it should be paid.
Reb Risty Organic and paid – what’s the difference between those?
April Ball You know that’s a really great question. Paid marketing is what you’re going to do when you spend ad dollars. You’re going to put your social profile in front of all the people that don’t already know it exists. Whereas organic marketing is essentially free. You’re going to go in it with a consistent posting schedule and you’re going to do engagement where you put yourself in front of your target audience.
Reb Risty Okay, at REBL we focus on organic. Tell me a little bit about how you use organic for our clients.
April Ball Right, we have one client that is an outsourced accounting firm and they really target small businesses. What I do for their Instagram specifically is I follow the Small Business hashtag. It’s really easy when I’m scrolling through their news feed and looking at everybody I follow, well now I have these posts that pop up in my news feed of everybody who tagged small businesses. Then I can like, I can comment, follow, direct message whatever is appropriate to the person that posted that, and really get a good grasp on the target audience.
Reb Risty I like that. I think that’s really unique in choosing a hashtag that’s outside of their normal you know key terms to really reach their audience. So that’s great. Tell us a little bit how you create content then around that for their social media.
April Ball So it’s really going back to that tailored approach. If a company already has a library full of photos, we’re going to capitalize on that. Why recreate the wheel? Otherwise, we can go onsite and we can take photos of their service or their products. Once we have those photos we’ll create those clever captions and we’ll put them into a content calendar.
April Ball You make sure that there are no duplicates that there is no repetitive messaging and that there is a good range of content that we’re sharing. From there we either schedule the posts or we post them live.
Reb Risty Great. This is probably your most common question, how do you know it’s working?
April Ball You know, this too is a great question because so many business owners don’t understand the analytics that each platform produces. So that’s where I come in. I take all the analytics from every platform that we post on, and then break them down into an elementary level and I put them into a very detailed and comprehensive report. Then I give it back to my business owners so they can really understand and comprehend how social media is benefiting their business.
Reb Risty Yeah, it’s so important because all the platforms they have such different reporting systems. It is valuable to have somebody who actually knows not only how to pull it but read it, and I know our clients have really appreciated that with you. Any last thoughts on if someone wants to start their social media or improve on what they’re doing?
April Ball You know, they say Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither were the largest social media profiles. It takes time, especially organically. Just stay on it, keep doing consistent posting, make sure that you’re taking the time to do that engagement, which is honestly the most cumbersome part it takes, it takes so many minutes out of a business owner’s day. If you can find somebody to do it for you who knows what they’re doing that is your best option.
Reb Risty Yeah, I completely agree, and I think with any well-integrated marketing plan it is about consistency and really following through with what you’re doing.
If you want to REBLutionize your marketing through social media, give us a call.
Have you noticed what companies are doing to succeed in building themselves as business thought leaders? Are you a B2B business that is looking for a way to stand out and move your brand to the next level? If the answer is yes, then it might be time for you to adopt a B2B public relations (PR) strategy.
Whether you are an enterprise-level, small- or mid-sized business in the B2B market, PR can help you excel your brand presence and drive business referrals. Here are 6 key steps to a successful public relations strategy.
1. Have clearly defined goals
Now that you have decided it’s time to take your company knowledge and leverage it in a proactive way, you want to develop clear B2B Public Relations objectives. First your goals need to be realistic. PR is a long-term strategy to build your brand position through legitimate third-party endorsement and placement. For example, at REBL, our B2B PR strategy starts with positioning our clients as thought leaders in their industry, local and nation communities. The main objective is to drive recommendations by reminding their referral network of our client’s industry expertise. By keeping them top of mind with their network, they get the referral when a potential client is looking for a company providing their services or product.
This is especially important for B2B businesses that rely on their business relationships for referrals. In a B2B business, a referred lead is worth 10 times more than a converted lead.
2. Identify your target audience
Remember that you are trying to reach people who have influence in your industry. If the opinion shapers are singing your praises, then your target audience will find your brand appealing.
Therefore, you have to do research on who will be interested in your services or products as well as who can purchase them. This information will help you determine their behaviors like the type of media they love reading, listening, or watching. With this information, you’ll tailor your message to your target audience, thus increasing your PR strategy’s impact. This process is called mapping out the Buyer’s Journey.
3. Determine your key message
With the knowledge of who your target audience is, now you can create a good message that will suit their preferences. Remember that for your Public Relations strategy to be effective your key message must be memorable and believable to your audience.
Normally, people’s purchasing behavior is influenced by what they remember about a product. This could be something they read, heard, or saw. Creating a memorable message will help push the sales of your products. So, ensure that your core message is credible, easy to remember, and understandable.
4. Know the best media outlet to use
All target audiences have their reading, listening, and viewing behaviors. Some age groups like watching content online, others prefer reading different publications and some prefer engaging with certain media outlets over others.
Therefore, you have to research the distribution channel that your target audience prefers: whether international, local, national, or regional. For instance, a financial firm can place its message in a local business publication or on a national podcast featuring business news.
Note, that the distribution channel can highly depend on the type of message you develop for your audience. Remember that some messages are only successful if placed on a blog verses in a video or podcast.
5. Come up with the best B2B Public Relations tactics
Choosing the right B2B Public Relations tactics and being consistent with them will fuel your PR strategy. The secret of running a successful B2B PR strategy is knowing how to use different media to reach the right audiences. For instance, after researching your target audience’s media behaviors, you may decide to use both digital and broadcast media.
Therefore, place your message on multiple, but targeted platforms, such as a digital magazine, local newspaper, radio, podcast and social media to ensure your brand get to a large percentage of your target customers.
For example, if you are a financial advisor and your target audience is clients with assets of more than $1mil they are more likely to read or listen to a podcast. A weekly podcast with your senior executive team would be better suited for your $1mil + target audience.
Verses a target audience of recently graduated professionals who are more likely to consume information from social media. For the young professional, they are more likely to listen to your interview with a key young professionals’ influencer. With concrete objectives and tactics, your B2B Public Relations strategy will be bear fruit.
6. Measure the success of your B2B PR strategy
A good B2B Public Relations strategy must have measurable indicators of success. Some ideas of how to measure your PR program:
- Customer reviews
- Number of expert interviews with the media
- Number of article placements with 3rd party publications
- Being asked to speak as an expert
If you discover that you’re achieving your goals, then continue using your B2B PR strategies. If not, then look for ways to improve your tactics. It is important to review your PR strategy regularly to ensure its effectiveness.
A good B2B Public Relations strategy will ensure that your company has a positive image. Creating a good PR strategy goes far beyond having the best market reach; you have to know your audience, craft a message that suits them, and use a media that can reach them. This six-step process will help you get started to create your own B2B PR strategy to get the most out of your marketing efforts. Contact REBL to learn more about crafting an effective B2B PR strategy for your business.
Video marketing is the most effective form of content marketing. Here are eleven video marketing tips to help your B2B company stand out.