Sales and Marketing Ireland 

Sales and Marketing articles,tips and information for Irish companies.

The sales and marketing buzzword word at the moment is “Social Selling”; where the sales process is now tapping into social media conversations and the impact of social networks in driving brand awareness or buyer consideration. Most sales and marketing leaders would concur that the sales process has completely changed.

Read all the series of articles relating to content marketing and sales here: Source: Sales and Marketing Ireland (with images) · brianoconnell · Storify

Marketing Companies in Dublin Guide

Marketing companies in Dublin or anywhere in Ireland offer a menu of services from digital marketing,SEO, social selling, content marketing to social media strategy. This guide is aimed at the business owner to ask what skills do they expect to see before deciding to working with one of the many marketing companies in Dublin or anywhere.

Social networks and the rise of social selling has changed the marketing game completely for business’s. Business has become smarter,faster, cheaper  with slower and expensive business models struggling. The lines dividing sales, marketing, advertising and public relations have disappeared with sales people needing to be able market and marketing people needing to sell.

Before engaging with a marketing company, when it comes to digital marketing there are some amazing do-it-yourself marketing tools that entrepreneurs or small business can use if they so choose. However, to successfully execute a social media marketing strategy or to implement a content marketing lead social selling strategy a business just may need some help. But they most likely will not need help from a bloated marketing agency still using old-school tactics.

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A Guide to engaging with the marketing companies.

Partnership not an Outsourcing Relationship.

There are lots of agencies and marketing consultants offering social media and digital marketing services. But does the potential client know exactly is being offered and what should be offered based on the needs of the business?

Will the agency assist with quality content creation? Can an agency source relevant articles and other content for the business segment to share on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, etc? (this is at the heart of social selling). Can an agency suggest social influencers or people to follow? Can an agency set up a tweeting plan? Does the agency know when/how to post content on the social networks? Can they recommend blogs and forums the business should be participating in/on?

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It is important your marketing partner can “be you” and act like you online. They don’t see themselves as some outsourcing operation looking for a day rate. They may be required to form relationships with prospects and engage in communication that looks like it is coming from the CEO. Any business needs to build relationships and trust in the social networks and on the web in order to raise the awareness level for its product or service. By only raising the awareness levels cost-effectively can a business start getting considered (expressed in inbound leads, web traffic etc) so the marketing partner most likely has to participate in achieving the business goals .

Speed to Market

Social networks and the digital channels move at lightning speed, and any marketing agency needs to have the ability to adapt and keep up with the pace. They need to be active in real time. It is vital that agencies rev up the speed factor so that they move as quickly as buyers or consumers do.

Buyer Behaviour Knowledge

The agency needs to understand the science of how people (B2B or B2C) behave online and across the social networks to increase awareness, clicks, engagement, and views. Do you prioritise white papers or product articles, lead with thought leadership or informative content? The marketing partner needs to have proven experience and delivered results in the science of digital marketing.

Industry Expertise

Many if not most marketing companies have a wide client base and dabble in several industries. Any good marketing partner will invest the time in becoming a “subject matter expert” so they can really impact on a businesses digital marketing plans. So look for a marketing company that will take the time to learn about the industry you are trying to acquire customers in and win sales in.

Flexibility and Adaptability

The whole digital marketing landscape and channels keeps changing and evolving. What worked a few years back or even last year many not necessarily work today, and what worked today to boost SEO or web traffic might not work well in a few months. The best skill a business might look for in a marketing professional is the ability to adapt to change and the ability to speed up the tactics.

Creative Content Marketing

Any marketing company will claim to how to produce “content,” but what a business needs is someone who can create quality, engaging content that gets views plus has been keyword crafted to be indexed highly by the search engines. Content marketing which drives social selling and to a large extent SEO is still a relatively new field and the experience and expertise has not become mainstream. Remember when it comes to social media marketing or content marketing, buyers and consumers on the social networks will tune out fast to the over-abundance of posts, so it is vital a business has engaging content that stand outs.

Buyer Motivation Research

In a fast paced business environment it is not enough to just throw some ads or well-crafted messages at an audience. Digital marketing and social media successful engagement is about understanding as much as possible the things that interest buyers and why. By understanding the buyers journey, influence points and carefully researching the target audience, a marketing company must be able to more effectively craft sales messaging and marketing campaigns.

This is a an exhaustive guide to working with marketing companies but hopefully it might help a business ask some questions to find a marketing partner to deliver their business goals.

The Bitter Business is a sales and marketing strategy partner based in Ireland. We help companies Grow.

Social Media will boost Business Influence

Social media networks can boost the level of influence a business has within a market or even impact buyer decisions. The explosion in social networks in recent years means brands like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn etc are actually driving economic activity through its ability to connect like-minded individuals or business for economic gain. Also these same social networks are championing more human forms of regulation and currency. Influence and reputation, (person to person exchange of information), has become part of the social media economic system and indicates that personal or brand trust will give a business more value than just pure financial transactions.

social-media-influence

The availability of social media tools to identify data (profiles,reviews,reputation) and create actionable social media intelligence with deeps insights is disrupting the market and allowing people to make evaluations about companies,products, and even individuals through websites, apps and a wide range of social media platforms.  The whole area of Influence and Reputation management is well understood in the old commercial markets and now this concept is extending its roots into the social networks creating a more personal and social environment in which people to connect. Consequently, businesses that work to boost their influence and reputation in the social exchange of information and user experiences based on soft capital, such as trust, reliability,benefit and reputation are now seeing better business results than those companies focused purely on chasing the money.

For a business to thrive in this the “social media reputation economy” they need for tools to identify who actually has influence and reputation within a market so that they can connect and harnesses for economic good. What market influencers are talking about and why they are talking are top of mind questions being asked by decision makers or buyers. Understanding the why is key to discovering why certain people have influence in a given business content, location and time. Actionable social media intelligence that drills down into influencer reputation and analyses intrinsic values is key to a successful business that can execute actionable social media marketing activities on a global scale.

A key point to note within the social networks is that “reputation can determine the level of influence”. So the first focus is to to build reputation by sharing information, stories, opinions and success in a way that is easy for marketing practitioners to identify and verify. This is key to building your level of influence in the social media reputation economy.  .

The author Brian Solis (What’s the Future of Business) argues that today’s value system in social engagement is based on 5 Vs:

1) Vision (I learn something, I am inspired);

2) Validation (I’m accepted or justified);

3) Vindication (I’m right, cleared);

4) Vulnerability (I’m open); and

5) Vanity (Not egotism, but accidental narcissism. I’m important),

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Every business that wants to tap into the power of social media needs to understand that they have to invest time in positive reputation updates, build social relationships and measure social influence levels. For a company investing time in being identified as an influencer and paying attention to what they communicate online will pay dividends in the social media economy. Above all being aware that marketing practitioners have access to tools that drill down into the intrinsic values associated with influence and reputation means that you can rest assured that investing this time will deliver an real return on investment in the growing reputation economy being powered by social media.

One company I recently interacted with is – Connectors Marketplace, they provides actionable social media data to sales and marketing managers. This social media tool enables a business to discover who is talking, what they are talking about and why they are talking. Social media opens up so many opportunities for even a small business to compete on a global scale, influence and reputation can’t be bought, it must be earned and that takes time and effort not money.

Also please read articles on  Social Media Marketing