Lydia joined Bright Innovation to help start-up clients see the full potential of effective marketing, bringing her experience in communications and campaign management. Outside of work you’ll find her checking out the latest trendy food joint, G&T in hand, whilst planning her next scuba diving trip.
You are probably only too aware of the power of LinkedIn as a social network to grow your businesspipeline, professional profile or job hunting prospects at the click of (a few) buttons. It’s the platform for creating engagement.
But the real value of LinkedIn comes from who you are connected with. Like all good marketing and sales campaigns, the focus should be very muchon quality over quantity. This is where LinkedIn is ultimately unrivalled.
Over the last 12+ months we have been working with our clients on projects ranging from recruiting partners across Europe tobuilding registrations for virtual events in key target markets. The constant here has been using LinkedIn as a key driver for these activities.
At Bright we take a highly targeted, segmented and personalised approachto this which allows our clients to grow their LinkedIn presence with the right audience, at pace.
Over the last six months in particular, the results from these projects have improved time and again, resulting in numerous new connections, meetings and attendees. All helping clients progress towards their business goals. You can see how we helped drive 2,000+ attendees to a virtual event forour client TECHNIA in this video case study.
So, you’ve got yourself 350 new connections on LinkedIn – what do you do next?
The optimising of a profile, targeting stakeholders from key accounts, building newconnections, and starting conversationsis really just the first steps of the process. The ultimate outcome is portraying the user as an industry and business thought leader amongst their peers, prospects, customers and wider network.
Building towards this longer-term goal takes preparation, a defined strategy, engaging content and a consistent approach to networking.This is also something which cannot be turned on and off. There will naturally be peaks and troughs, butat least one of the following elements should be running:
Personal brand – promoting you, your company, your products or services and industry thought leadership content
Dream clients and contacts – monitoring and understanding what your key target contacts and accounts are doing in the market
Connections and conversations–keep networking and engaging with your contacts
Community leader –posting in relevant groups for peer-to-peer engagement
Soft selling–interacting by liking, commenting and sharing your target audience
Yes, it is a lot of work. But it is definitely worth the reward.
Interested in using LinkedIn to support your marketing goals? Drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Nick is a results driven Demand Generation Manager at Bright. He has over 6 years B2B demand generation and business development experience gained working with some of the world’s largest IT and tech companies. Nick has managed projects around the globe, creating engagement across a variety of industries and contacts. He is passionate about how bespoke, highly targeted and (most importantly) agile campaigns can deliver value for his clients.
When it comes to writing copy, you need to get it right. Whether you’re writing a press release, sales pitch, blog post or an e-mail campaign, your copy needs to engage. This is your chance to have your message heard – and you only get one shot. Lose your audience’s interest and your message will fall on deaf ears.
With that in mind, here are a few tips on how to write better copy.
Know your audience
Knowing your audience is critical to how you communicate with them. The purpose of copy (generally) is to influence someone’s course of action. In order to do this you need to know who that person is and how that person thinks.
Research your audience. Find out what those in the industry value and what challenges they face:
What do they like? Dislike?
What else do they read?
What language do they use?
In what tone are they used to being addressed? Is it authoritative? Conversational? Humorous?
Establish an appropriate identity before you attempt to engage your reader – or else they’ll disengage with you.
Composition and content
Be clear on the story that you are trying to tell and what it is that you want to achieve. Do you want your audience to purchase something? Join something? Go somewhere? Read more? Your call to action should be very specific and impossible to miss.
Use the fewest words possible to get your message across.
Think: simple and elegant – and boil everything down to its basic element.
Be descriptive but avoid adjectives.
Use active verbs – buy, join, visit, read – and where possible back up your persuasive language up with fact.
If you’re giving a technical description bullet points work well to directly relay information.
Vary your sentence lengths. Shorter sentences have higher impact. But too many short sentences can be exhausting. Lots of long sentences will get boring – so strike the balance right.
Read your copy out loud to get a sense of how it sounds.
Proof read – and then proof read again
Make sure your copy is completely clean.
Take out repetitive words or sentences.
Check spelling and grammar twice.
Even better, have a colleague check your work.
If that’s not possible, read your copy backwards (your brain will think that you are reading something new).
Remember, your copy reflects you – and you want to put your best foot forward. If you present well, readers will assume that you do your work well too.
Even prior to 2020, opening doors in Financial Services was a common barrier to FinTech’s lead generation success. But now, whilst the world is (still) awash with uncertainty and we’re pivoting on the edge of a recession, hammering home the marketing message agreed on in January 2020’s strategy session just isn’t going to support the pipeline. The world has changed, priorities have adjusted, and they will continue to do so as things settle down and the markets stabilise.
With Agile marketing, you can respond and adapt to what’s happening in the industry – staying poised and ready to optimise at a moment’s notice. The message your target audience will receive from a data-driven strategy is one of relevance, support and benefit to the current climate. The groundwork and elements involved in a full agile marketing mix are invaluable to the success of a campaign and the impact on the sales pipeline.
Here’s how to inject agility into your FinTech’s marketing activity to get more leads and boost your performance in the financial services market.
1. Fine-tune your value statement
No matter how awesome your tech may be, if your value isn’t clear and focused in addressing the pain points and challenges of your prospects, it’s sure to get lost — leaving your audience feeling unimpressed and disengaged.
To form a powerful value statement, start taking note of the problems you solve and the solutions you deliver for your clients, as well as the benefits your tech and team offer from start to finish. People want to hear about people helping other people — Tell your story and make sure it’s backed up with stats and real-world evidence.
Don’t let data be the bottleneck to reaching your prospects. Define your target audience, create personas, then build and enrich the data to ensure your FinTech’s marketing efforts reach the contacts you want to engage.
Although at times this step can seem like a gruelling manual task, skipping it will only serve to limit your outreach, leaving you missing out on contacting key influencers and decision makers that may need your firm’s offering. Invest in the time and tools necessary to keep your database up to date and give you room to expand on markets where you’re a little thin on the ground.
3. Embrace the power of content
Yes, content is still king. People don’t buy what you’re selling straight away — they like to browse, research, read a few blogs, or watch a few videos. They want to know that 30-minute call you’re asking for is going to be worth their time, so make it clear what you’re all about. Sharing content that illustrates your employees’ talent, your company’s timely offering and positive testimonials from happy clients can show prospects what they’ve been missing. Their personal data is precious, and they won’t give their email address away for nothing!
Use your data insights and audience personas to brainstorm topics relevant to your prospects’ interests and pain points, then discuss with your subject matter experts from across the business. Each piece of content should have a clear goal in mind.
Explore more FinTech marketing tips
These three tips are just the tip of the iceberg to transforming your marketing. If you want to dive in deeper and learn how to fully adopt agile marketing at your FinTech, find out more and get in touch. With a decade of experience in the world of FinTech, we understand what it takes to meet your business goals through stand-out marketing campaigns and projects.
Natalie Burrows is a driven agile marketing manager with a flare for FinTech and large corporate projects. With 8 years’ experience working in FinTech and Financial Services, she’s focussed on breaking the mould with new ideas and driving business outcomes.
Interruptions are infuriating. There are only so many times that you can demand your audience’s attention and persuade someone to buy a product, consider a service, read more, click here…or whatever your call to action may be.
Since you only get a few chances (if that!) to connect, producing relevant content that brings value to its readers is key to engaging with them.
Positioning yourself as a thought leader in your industry is essential for establishing trust, proving authority, building awareness, and, ultimately, on market share.
But how do you go about creating killer content that will set you apart from the rest?
Be a giver
“The paradox is the more info you give away; the more people will buy what you have to give.”
Brian Clark hit’s the nail on the head. Your reader must feel like he or she has something to gain – or else they’ll quickly disengage.
Show them your unique perspective. Teach them something they didn’t know. Give advice that they can act on.
Business leaders want to learn before they invest, so set out to inform your audience – not to pitch to it. This not only shows that you know your stuff, but establishes an association between you and added value.
This is obviously essential – but often overlooked. Your content has to be effortlessly digested, if is to pack a punch.
Be clear. Be concise. Be compelling. Make sure it is easy to absorb:
• Utilise bullet points (see what I did there?) • Use images to break up the text • Bold key words so that they stand out • Look at the typography and font size • Consider column width • Think about colour • How are the lines spaced? • Where will your ‘call to action’ go?
It is important that your content is, not only readable, but also usable. Make it interactive by including links – both to other areas of your own site and to relevant third party content if this applies.
Incidentally, there is more on how to write better copy.
Sharing is caring
So, you’ve written something tremendous? In today’s world (where cat videos go viral in minutes) you need to ensure that your content is shareable.
Integrate social sharing tools to make it is easy for your reader to spread the word – your word.
All you need is a button, for example, that allows your reader to tweet your content with one click of the mouse. There are a ton of tools out there to help you to encourage others to promote your work. Help them to help you.
Not only do you want to enable someone to share your stuff – you also want others to be able to stumble upon it.
To boost your search engine ranking, and help readers find your content online, you will need to assign it at least one strong key word. You will then need to optimise your content, and its metadata, for your chosen terms.
This might involve doing some initial key word research (again, there are several tools to help you with this) but it will pay dividends in the end.
Read more on the do’s and don’ts of SEO.
Build a strategy
Yes, you can write something that will rock your reader’s world, but it’s what you do with your content that really counts:
• How is it distributed? Through which channels, on what devices, and in what form? • To whom is it delivered? • Where is it hosted? • How regularly is it updated? • Is it consistent? • Is it relevant? • Is it current – and how do you plan to keep pace with hot topics? • What is the overall objective? • Who is going to follow up – and how?
How you promote your content is truly essential – or your words may fall on deaf ears. If it’s searchable, shareable, and you’re shouting about it, you have a powerful weapon at your disposal.
At Bright Innovation we believe that if you get your content marketing right, it will speak for itself, and help you to build the relationships that will ultimately drive revenue.
If you’d like to talk about the kind of approach that might work for you, contact a member of the Bright team!
Webinar recap: How agile marketing powered TECHNIA's virtual event
The latest in the Bright agile marketing in action webinar series went live on 23 June 2020 and it was a hit! We brought together the best and brightest in strategic marketing to explore what it takes to create ground-breaking virtual events. Joining us for a discussions were CMO, Ghassan Sultan and Marketing Project Manager, Lisa Granton, key players at TECHNIA, one of our top clients. Together, we explored how they managed to smash their 1,000-attendee target at the recent PLMIF 2020 event. So, what’s the critical success factors for creating a virtual event that scores leads and builds your brand?
Agile marketing powers virtual events
Our webinar poll discovered that 96% of organisations have moved their events online. The global work culture has changed in response to Covid-19 and it’s not just a temporary fix. Your next event will be online, but it has to stand out from the crowd. To do this effectively, your event must capture the needs and goals of your audience and provide the tools and information they need to readily adapt and keep pace in a changing market.
So, where to start?
Embrace agile marketing
As the Bright team discussed in our webinar:
“Marketers need the ability to adapt, move at pace and be resilient to changing markets and organisation dynamics – this has been critical during Covid-19 and will continue to be relevant as we prepare for Brexit,”
In short, agile marketing is the common-sense approach to optimising what you have and experimenting with new tactics, tools, messaging and channels to reach your campaign KPIs.
When creating virtual events, an agile way of working allows you to bring together a cross-functional team to test, learn and continually improve your strategies, messaging and tactics throughout the event lifecycle – driving engagement and leads before, during and after your live event. Using valuable data insights to understand what works for your audience and what doesn’t, giving you the power to create an event that makes a lasting impact and builds your reputation in your industry.
The TECHNIA success story
TECHNIA came to Bright with a bold vision. They wanted to change the way events were delivered, capitalise on high-value content and reach a global audience. Ghassan walked us through TECHNIA’s goal to transform how they host events and attract a large audience. What started as a costly physical event turned into an ambitious vision for an innovative knowledge-sharing virtual event.
Ghassan’s vision for TECHNIA’s PMLIF 2020:
Target 1,000 global attendees
Capitalise on existing digital content and try new channels
Be 100% sustainable in line with TECHNIA’s #GoExplore movement
Cut time and budget from £100,000 in 4-8 months to £10,000 in 4-8 weeks
It was clear that such a brilliant event demanded extraordinary KPIs. Always ready for a challenge, Bright jumped at the opportunity to engage and drive leads from global tech leaders throughout the event lifecycle. We helped create a multi-channel marketing strategy, delivering key messaging for different target audiences through different media across the three-month campaign.
“Transitioning from physical to virtual really takes effort and your team is vital to success,” said Ghassan. “Bright’s agile marketing approach seamlessly integrated with our team. Thanks to the regular stand-ups and strong data insights, we were able to quickly change tactics to reach 2,000 attendees – an incredible success!”
Critical success factors to creating a compelling event:
Setting clear, strong KPIs
Testing and iterating messaging
Providing quality on-demand content
TECHNIA’s marketing manager, Lisa Granton, also highlighted the power of data-driven decision making and communication to drive success:
“Throughout the agile marketing process, we received constant feedback on what was working and what wasn’t, and the Bright team responded with great energy to perfect our messaging. We were able to keep developing and improving throughout our campaign.”
Agile marketing is a different way of working and we have seen its tremendous power to transform teams and encourage cultural change. After the success of the PLMIF 2020 virtual event, TECHNIA noticed a dramatic change in their ways of working and how they approach creating future virtual events. “We found we were less focused on large, far-reaching strategies and more focused on starting small – setting short-termed goals and daily tasks to effectively reach our long term, big KPIs.” It’s safe to say the next PMLIF event will be crafted with agile marketing.
According to Ghassan, PLMIF2020 will also be hybrid. Taking the lessons they’ve learnt on how to deliver a successful event, they’re planning to create a roadshow of small, local physical events followed by a large global virtual event.
Learnings from the webinar Q&A
How do you engage sponsors?
Create sponsorship opportunities, tailored to your partners and get them to help promote the event. TECHNIA saw wave after wave of partners getting involved in promotion and Bright provided a toolkit of engaging messaging for easy promotion by partners.
How do you nurture leads?
Divide your team into two, focussing one on attracting leads and hitting your target with high-level messaging, and the other on nurturing leads through email, LinkedIn and other keep warm tactics.
How do you evaluate what platform works best to support a large virtual event?
Pinpoint your goals – do you want to make your virtual event look and feel like a physical conference with booths and networking opportunities? Or do you simply want to share knowledge and create dialogue with your audience? Once you’ve shortlisted your options, speak to reference clients and leverage their experience with the different platforms to make your choice.
You also have the option of building your own platform! If like TECHNIA, you know what you want and you have the skills and resources, build a platform that suits your needs.
How do you drive people to attend the live event on the day and not the on-demand?
TECHNIA advertised that they would be sharing content during the live event that hadn’t been viewed or discussed before. Combined with the multi-channel campaign we ran and Bright also provided a toolkit of eye-catching comms to help the TECHNIA sales team invite attendees to their virtual booths.
Where can I find additional resources?
Have a read through our top tips for creating a stand-out virtual event:
Want to learn more? Watch the full event today, on-demand for viewing at your leisure. And if you’d like to have your say in the conversation on agile marketing or virtual events, join our Agile Marketing Club Meet Up group. See you there!
Although many forward-thinking and innovative marketers are already reaping the benefits of the more efficient, agileway of working, with 71% of our survey respondentsadoptingagile techniques to help them get to market faster– this is a common first reaction when discussing agile marketing transformation. Youmight understand the concept in the general sense, but few can identify what agile marketing actually is,and perhaps even more importantly, what it isn’t.
Incorporating agility is not about making quick, unfounded decisions as fast as possible to meet a deadline, but about strong, data-driven decision makingat pace—reacting to market changeand continuously learning for optimised results that provide key takeaways for the next sprint of the project.
There are three core aspects of the agile approach, all of which work togetherina successful agile marketing delivery.Check out each component in terms of why it’s important to marketing as a wider function as well as why it is a focus of marketing with agility and pace. If you’d like a more in-depth explanation of what agile is, before deep diving into its components, see our introductory guide.
Creating the culture
As the first building block, People is one of the most overlooked and underrated assets of any business. Your team arethe driving force that pushes your business forward — an unlimited creative resource and original idea generator that knows no bounds and a big part of the products or services you provide.
When incorporating agility into your marketing strategy, it is people that will deliver to deadlines, meet campaign KPIs and ultimately ensure the success of this project and beyond.
The core principles that drive success in an agile team are ownership and transparency. Individuals take responsibility for what they produce, avoiding siloed work by providing transparency to the rest of the team, or Agile Hub.
Before any project begins, a culture of change and learning with team members is established, creating togetherness, alignment and a positive attitude towards achieving a shared objective. Stakeholder mapping is conducted so as to understand existing processes, dividing roles and responsibilities in a strategic, efficient way.With the internal marketing team’s skills and capabilities reviewed to identify gaps and to help identify how agile marketing experts, such as Bright, can best support throughout the project.
The natural pace of agile marketing makes it an exciting environment for employees who are willing to embrace a move away from a more traditional approach and they are likely to come away with invaluable learnings for future projects. Without realising, you’ve created a more attractive place to work.
Pragmatic process and ways of working
The second element of an agile marketing strategy is process. As we work towards the set KPIs, embedding new ways of working and improving performance is key.
Within the sphere of B2B, marketing professionals can be all-too quick to deny the flaws of current processes, instead looking to blame external factors for underperformance. In fact, it’s often only when a project is exposed to a fresh pair of eyes, exploring the unexplored, that holes, flaws and areas for improvement within existing processes come to light.
When adopting an agile approach, you actively seek and identify issues and risks, as well as the dependencies and barriers that can affect the outcome. By being proactive, you not only minimise the likelihood of risks becoming issues, but you also have a better idea about dependencies and can establish effective workarounds as and when required.
By applying the test, learn, iterate model to developing processes, businesses are able to make tweaks and amendments to optimise activity based on data combined with previous experience to establish a closed feedback loop and cultivate continuous improvement.In addition, workplaces encourage a culture of learning within teams, empowering internal teams and providing the know-how to continually achieve fantastic results.
Optimised technology and data driven decisioning
Technology is seamlessly integrated throughout the marketing function, enabling pace, data visibility and informed decision making. This may sound too ideological; tech is often seen as a barrier and too regularly large investments are made only to be side-lined by excel docs, butit’s the third and final building block.
Technology has revolutionised the marketing function to allow for capabilities marketing managers could only dream ofa few years ago. According to a report from 2018, there are 2.5 quintillion bytes of data created each and every day, a number that is likely to have accelerated along with the growth of the Internet of Things. 2018, there are 2.5 quintillion bytes of data created each and every day, a number that is likely to have accelerated along with the growth of the Internet of Things.
In order to inform your strategies and create data-driven decisions, it’s essential to put the right tech in place to gain actionable insight. Avoid vanity stats and focus on what can effect change in your results, having a large number of visits to a landing page has little value if they don’t engage with any content on the page or convert.
Adopting agile ways of working removes the perceived barriers outlined above, recognising the role played by technology, championing the use of automation, CRM and project management software. Map your existing martech, identify the gaps and create an adoption plan to ensure your technology is being used effectively to support the wider marketing team. Learn more about how you can optimise your technology with our recent blog post, Making the most of your martech stack.
Could your team benefit from an agile marketing approach? Contact us today to talk further about your current marketing strategy and how the fantastic team here at Bright will be able to help.
The outbreak of Covid-19 has forced the majority of the world to work from home, children to be kept out of school, and trips outside to only be taken once a day for exercise or when collecting and delivering essentials. This is new for all of us and it has unnerved a lot of people into thinking that their marketing actions need to stop until all this is over.
But now more than ever, marketing is critical. It’s the one survival tool at your disposal capable of seeing your business through to the end of this crisis and ensuring success in the years to come. If you’re looking for a simple, cost-effective way to hone your marketing focus, LinkedIn is the place to be. By increasing visibility across the top networking app for business, you’ll keep customers engaged with your brand, stay in touch with partners and suppliers, and build pipeline through steady lead generation. What’s more, the number of users is increasing, with more professionals than ever jumping on to share news, knowledge and business tips for success in times of market disruption.
So, we know LinkedIn is the place to be right now, but you’ll still need a proper strategy to make the most of all this tool has to offer. Now certainly isn’t the time to fire off connection requests and LinkedIn ads without a second thought. There’s a lot to take into consideration when formulating your messaging.
Here’s how to do it:
1. Don’t ignore COVID-19
It’s here, it’s affecting everyone, and it will have an impact on business for years to come. It is already changing the way people live, work and interact. Acknowledge that and acknowledge the hardship in your messaging. Don’t act like it’s just business as usual. This crisis should unite us.
2. Outline how you can help right now
Pitching what was useful back in January when we were all devising our 2020 strategies won’t be of any help or interest right now. Make that mistake and you’ll find yourself reposted with #marketingfail. Take some time to creatively rework your proposition as a benefit in the immediate term and clearly explain how your service will help companies get back on their feet.
3. Do your research
If you’re struggling to answer the point above, then you need to go back to the research stage. Don’t stop building pipeline but do reassess your target accounts and verticals quickly. Take the time to fully understand the impact this global crisis will have on your clients’ target markets, then tailor your messaging and service to ensure you’re offering support they need. Retaining existing clients is key to future revenue, so make sure they feel reassured and well managed.
4. Stay relevant
Give your audience the useful tips and how-to guides they need to easily get started with your service or product. Be there as the helpful thought leader of that space when you respond to connections or jump in forum threads, the one they turn to when they need further guidance or support throughout this crisis. And, now that we’re all at home, turn your content into interactive virtual events to inform, engage and inspire your LinkedIn network.
5. Be personal
This is an opportunity to build relationships and contact prospects you haven’t been able to reach — consider Account Based Marketing (ABM) to help open up dialogue. With everyone working from home and social distancing, people are now more responsive to an invitation to discuss over a virtual cup of tea (or coffee) and intro video calls. Plus, you’ll have plenty of common ground to discuss and knowledge share in how to combat the impact of COVID-19.
From individual professionals to global enterprises, LinkedIn is the number one social media tool for business right now, and your key to surviving this period of massive market disruption. By researching the impact, pivoting your message accordingly and creating engaging content, your LinkedIn marketing will offer a viable opportunity for interacting with your prospects and supporting them through this time.
Adapt your marketing to survive and thrive
At Bright, we’ve been helping our clients quickly pivot their strategies and adapt their messaging on LinkedIn and other social media channels. Watch our immersive webinar as we explore ways to ignite agility, boost leads and perfect communications throughout this challenging time.
CMO point of view: Testing agile marketing to drive results
“Those who can best manage change will survive.”
Whether you attribute this paraphrased statement to Charles Darwin or someone else, it’s as relevant today as it’s ever been – particularly for Chief Marketing Officers and senior marketers.
To see why, just look around at unparalleled disruption from Brexit, Covid-19 and environmental factors such as climate change, combined with the pace of digital transformation. Technology and data are the catalyst for keeping pace and adapting. For those of us in the business of marketing technology and the products and services that surround it, campaigns have to be just as fast (and agile) to yield sustainable success.
I know it’s easy to say (or write) that CMOs need to leverage agility at pace. But we all know it’s not that easy to incorporate agility and run effective brand building and integrated campaigns. Sometimes it’s down to not having the right tools, not having the time to research what your competitors are up to, or how to change an internal culture used to waterfall ways of working.
Agile is no longer part of start-up thinking — but it’s being adopted by some of the biggest global players
Transforming all this takes time, and that’s a commodity few CMOs have these days. If this all sounds familiar to you, involving external experts (such as Bright), who specialise in agile marketing, can help you work out the best way to approach embedding new ways of working into your team and the wider organisation without impacting the day-to-day marketing tasks you still have to deliver on throughout transformation.
Getting started with agile marketing
Injecting agile might sound simple, but it involves a change of mindset in your team culture, new processes and sometimes tools or tech. If you don’t have the right skills in your team today, then seeking outside support accelerates that change, minimises risk and avoids the common issues that could undermine the transition. Use a Proof of Concept to research, test and learn what would work best for your organisation and team to start the journey, maintain momentum and embed the right model.
Fintech company injects agility to drive better marketing results
To give you a better idea of this all works, we’ve broken down the true story of how a CMO from a Fintech software and services company championed agile marketing transformation.
Specialising in providing real-time transaction control and enterprise integrity solutions, their sales cycle usually falls somewhere between six and nine months. However, they wanted to accelerate results over a three-month period, and with target accounts in the US and UK, they needed to drive results in both of these territories.
With all this in mind, the CMO wanted to understand if an agile marketing approach was the way to go. Our team needed to prove that it would help the organisation achieve the following:
1. Become more results focused
The agile method of testing, learning and iterating would let the team take more risks, try new approaches and know early-on if their efforts were working.
2. Achieve rapid time to market ‘Sprints’ had helped them get their software to market faster, so they wanted to apply the same approach to their marketing strategies.
[Marketing strategies] need to be scientific. CMOs need to set hypotheses and learn and optimise from every experiment – Zoe Merchant, MD at Bright
3. Become more adaptable Knowing that software succeeds only when it’s been developed iteratively with a Proof of Concept (PoC), a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) or prototype, they wanted the same iterative approach when going to market to cover the expected, and unexpected, over the three-month campaign.
4. Make data-driven decisions The marketing team needed a steady source of data to quickly understand their performance and validate and share what they were doing.
The end game: 12 high quality opportunities in 12 weeks
On top of these results, the Fintech firm gained a framework that they can use to scale as they grow and build more campaigns. Alongside the results, this is a major value-add from the journey.
The client can now execute ideas, understand their needs, and meet expectations much faster. They get continuous feedback from marketing, sales, and their data, helping them align their teams with results and insight. What’s more, they now feel free to experiment with less risk, and confident that marketing with agility and pace will support their future business goals.
How to create virtual experiences that deliver on business goals
During this current Covid-19 crisis, we’re all at home, all facing the same challenge of having to quickly adapt our business practices and processes for remote working, whilst maintaining communication with our teams, suppliers and wider ecosystems. This all calls for increased focus on marketing, a tool that’s now more vital to your long-term business success than before. To safeguard your pipeline and strengthen your brand throughout the outbreak’s disruption, you need to maintain momentum — business as usual is simply not an option. Our new reality demands more creative ways to engage, share knowledge and build relationships online.
Rethinking the webinar
Virtual experiences and events have come a long way in the last few years and are now a valuable tool for building and maintaining engagement and driving revenue. But marketers need to think differently and creatively about virtual events today. Don’t just try to recreate a physical experience. Carefully and consistently promote your event, and once you have a captive audience, incorporate networking and knowledge sharing throughout the event. The tools and tactics aren’t important — be clear on the value for the customer, what they gain from engaging in your experience or event. Be compelling. Be a must-attend.
And there’s no reason to hesitate. Marketers can get on with promotion and delegate recruitment for an event long before the technicalities or hosting tool have been determined. Tool selection and testing can happen alongside promotion — so why wait?
Keeping content fresh
Mix up formats or scale events up or down. Blend large, livestreamed keynote speeches with canned content, or intimate expert QA and panel discussions with coaching and interactive working sessions. Whether your event is large or small, informal networking coffee breaks or special interest groups are all possible and make for a more compelling experience. And, you can get more bang for your buck if you record and reuse your event’s content for your social media channels and audiences.
Strive to create a fully immersive experience with storytelling. Asking the audience to play a role and actively participate in the event is a great way to land complex messages. Inviting participants to drive and engage with the content their own way in their own time also raises the likelihood of your content being consumed. 80% of content within an interactive experience is digested and gamification makes delivering messages fun and products and solutions competitive. These experiences can be part of the promotion as well as the event itself.
Now, more than ever, we need to be inventive in how we engage our audiences. We’ve been building an immersive experience to connect with our remote audiences that offers a new, exciting way to digest our content — and gives us plenty of data to continually improve our content.
Top 10 ways to cut through the noise
Tick off this list to get your event or experience up and running quickly
Value proposition: Create a strong value proposition for your event. Clearly state that your event is virtual and convey that it’s a good use of their time — what edge will it give them?
Nurture: Don’t forget to keep your delegates warm prior to the event. Tease new speakers, content or networking opportunities to get them energised
Launch a preview: Show them what the experience will be like to encourage engagement before the event
Don’t get stuck on the tools: You can start developing and promoting an event to gauge interest and engagement whilst you decide on whether you can use your existing tools or will need to invest in new tech
Exclusive access: Use restricted or limited offers of access to subject matter experts or thought leaders in the field as a compelling call-to-action. These can be delivered through one-to-one live video chats and are a proven way to get sign-ups
Book a meeting: If now isn’t a good time to talk, offer a call-back slot with a member of your sales team
Be prepared: Make sure you rehearse. Everyone needs to be comfortable with using the event software and available features. Upskill your team, show you’re available and make sure your event is fully staffed — don’t leave people waiting for an answer in an online chat
Be interactive: Poll your delegates and invite attendees to send questions pre-event to keep things really relevant and topical and avoid the dreaded question-answer lag during a keynote. Blend immersive and video content to maintain pace and excitement
Be data driven: A virtual event or experience opens up data and insight across the buyer journey. Make sure your team knows how to analyse and use data to make informed changes to the promotion, or during the live event, to maximise engagement and conversion.
Consider your audience
Make sure you don’t move your physical event online without taking time to pinpoint your audience’s needs. Be sure to localise your content for your target audience, taking into account language and cultural differences, such as UK vs US English.
Be aware that their attention spans will inevitably decrease once online, but there’s a vast range of interactive tools available for keeping them interested. You can even use real-time data to better understand your engagement rate. During the event, tell your speakers to speed up or change tactics to minimise the risk of audience drop-off.
Making the most of your virtual experience
Now that everyone is at home, there are many benefits to well thought-out virtual events and experiences:
Global reach: Your virtual event will instantly become a global event. Plan for that, taking into consideration all audiences that may be compelled to join
Intent data: Build profiles based on content users who have engaged with your event to accurately track and predict their buying signals in the future
Behavioural tracking: Create more informed sales conversations using your built profiles
Lasting content: Host the event for a day, then allow users to access the content for weeks after, all whilst you build your pipeline
Warm pipeline: This all adds up to an engaged database of target contacts — just what your business needs to reach your long-term goals
Standing out from the crowd
There’s no doubt that this crisis will have a long-lasting impact on marketing and business in general. In these times of market uncertainty, the ability to adapt and create virtual experiences that are multifaceted and dynamic — not just broadcasted events — will be essential today and tomorrow for ensuring a more sustainable future for your marketing. Many of your peers are already out there pushing traditional webinars, so you’ll have to get creative to stand out and make some noise. In reality, you can’t completely replicate the in-person networking experience, but you can come close by building a global community in your virtual event. Through immersive storytelling, interactive QAs, and fresh content, you’ll unlock engagement and drive business opportunities for a brighter future.
Need some inspiration? Sign up for our Agile Marketing Club to see what an immersive virtual event looks like.
Credit to the fantastic team at TECHNIA for the image from their PLM Innovation Forum virtual event (launching on the 28th April), who had the vision for a sustainable event before Covid-19 forced the events world to pivot.
As the Covid-19 crisis continues to engulf the world, it will undoubtedly change the way we work. You and your team are probably working from home already. You may have been given a timeline of two weeks or you have simply been told to stay home for the foreseeable future. Whilst a few days at home is a welcome, relaxing break from stressful commuting and in-person meetings, staying productive can be challenging and long periods of isolation can be damaging to your mental health and overall team morale. To help you stay sharp, positive and productive, follow these top tips for outlasting the outbreak from your home office.
Ensure a productive workday
Get ready as if you’re about to catch the Tube
Shower, eat breakfast and yes, get dressed. Whilst working comfortably in your cosy pyjamas on the couch is the most attractive aspect of working from home, it won’t help you snap into work mode. In fact, you’re more likely to feel tired and groggy. Plus, you’ll want to feel confident calling in to meetings — you’ll probably be asked to join meetings with your camera on, as companies will want to ensure effective communication during this crisis.
Write a to-do list
Once you’re up and feeling refreshed, you’re ready to tackle your to-do list. 30% of remote workers said they feel more productive with a to-do list. Grab a notebook and jot down things to do — work-related and personal — to help you plan your day. But of course, there’s an app for that too, if you’re looking for a greener option to task management.
Try to categorise or sort by morning, afternoon and evening to help you stay productive. Trust us, there’s nothing better than ticking off your list at the end of a day – and what a great excuse for relaxing at the end of the day!
Start working at your normal working time.
If you’re normally in the office at 8.30am, turn your computer on at 8.30am. Even if you don’t have morning meetings, keeping your normal routine will help you get motivated quickly. The last thing you want to do is start late and end up working late to make up for it. However, you may decide you need to shift your working hours, and that’s fine. This is your chance to set a working schedule that works for you — and your health.
Keep track of tasks and deadlines
Along with that to-do list, it’s important to keep a list of objectives and deadlines for the day or week. You’ll also want to keep a clean desk, desktop and filing system. The latter is especially critical if you’re working in Microsoft Teams or Monday.com in which documents easily get lost without a standardised filing system.
Be active in group chats
Whether you’re using Microsoft Teams, Monday.com or Mural, be sure that you’re visibly ‘at work’. That might mean answering queries, posting a status update on what you’re working on, offering to take on a task, or participating in a public conversation.
Just remember that this doesn’t mean that you have to be furiously working and posting non-stop. You can take breaks. It’s perfectly fine to appear to be ‘away’ during the day. We’re striving to keep our normal working routine here, not turn you into a superhuman working-from-home machine!
Focus on your health
To build on that point, studies show that workers take fewer breaks when working from home. Perhaps it’s the fear of not being there to answer an email or IM. No one wants to look like they’re slacking. But you need to give your mind (and eyes!) a break from your computer screen every now and then, just as you do in the office. Set aside a few minutes a day to do yoga, make a cup of tea, read a book or go for a walk to clear your head.
But not all breaks are healthy. Mindless online shopping or Facebook browsing won’t help you focus later. See these tips on how to avoid taking unproductive breaks.
Don’t forget to eat
I know, sounds impossible right? But in reality, working from home can throw off your normal eating schedule. When you get so buried in a task at home, odds are there isn’t anyone there to invite you to lunch. Schedule an hour’s lunch break every day. Put it in your calendar if you need to, to remind you and your co-workers.
And during this crisis, it’s more important than ever to avoid junk food and binge-eating that can be detrimental to your health. Nutritionist Natalie Burrows offers top tips for eating well to support your immune system and prevent infection.
Get outside (if you’re not self-isolating!)
If you or someone you live with is showing symptoms of Covid-19, WHO recommends self-isolating in your home for at least 7 days to prevent the spread of infection.
If you’re healthy and not showing symptoms, you’re probably practicing social distancing — but that doesn’t mean you can’t leave your home. As you won’t be walking to work or the Tube, your body will miss that little bit of exercise! Stretch your legs with a quick pop to the shop or a walk around the neighbourhood. To stay in peak health, be sure to get a bit of fresh air and vitamin D when you can.
Studies actually show that walking alone can boost your immune system dramatically. Men and women who walk at least 20 minutes a day, 5 days a week had 43% fewer sick days than those who walked once a week or less.
End your day at your normal working time
Surprisingly, studies show that working from home often leads to longer working hours. But shutting off at your normal time is important for your health. Just because you don’t have to commute, doesn’t mean you need to continue working. If you normally end at 5.30pm, sign off and close your laptop. Being available 24/7 won’t help you stay productive or impress your manager – it will only make you more tired, grumpy and ineffective, or worse, susceptible to illness.
Tips for managers
Trust your employees to do the work
This extended period of working from home will test your team’s ability to stay self-motivated and meet deadlines – and your management skills. Whilst it will undoubtedly be tempting, this is not the time to start micromanaging. Your team will need some time to adjust to working from home – balancing a work schedule from home with daily family life isn’t easy!
So, how do you stay involved and in control as a manager but avoid turning into a burdensome micromanager? State objectives, tasks and deadlines clearly in your task programme. Assign and tag your team members to each task and be sure to answer queries as quickly as possible.
But whilst written communication is important and efficient, this is the time to focus on encouraging face-to-face communication as much as possible. Set up daily Scrum stand-ups, especially if your team is used to working in an agile way, and be sure to use video. This will help you provide key context, answer queries and avoid miscommunication. If video calls and stand-ups are new to your team, send across helpful guides to let them know what’s expected from their participation.
Use the right tools
We’ve mentioned a few communication tools and software that we use, but you really have your choice of software for your team’s needs. Microsoft Teams is the perfect tool for chatting and collaborating, and Monday.com is handy for planning, tracking and assigning tasks. We’ve recently adopted the sticky-note app Mural for streamlining daily meetings and stand-ups. All are visually intuitive, simple and easy to use.
Boost team morale
Work hard, play hard — even at home! This extended period of time away from the office calls for a focus on keeping the team spirit alive and well. Plan virtual coffee breaks, lunches and games to bring the team together as often as possible (without overloading their calendar of course!). It’s important to open up time for chatting and banter, not just meetings. Here at Bright, we’ve set up Bright Olympics to play a few short games and chat over coffee to stay in touch.
We’re all in this together
The Covid-19 crisis is affecting us all. Businesses are now under tremendous pressure to keep things running smoothly but setting up remote working and ensuring productivity is a challenge for both management and the team. By following these tips, we hope you’ll be able to find and provide some much-needed security for your company in the year ahead. If you need help adopting new ways of working to support your newly remote team, schedule a virtual coffee break with the Bright team today or get started with an Agile Hub.