If I learned anything from the Business Marketing Association of Phoenix and the American Marketing Association of Phoenix Heat Check event at Topgolf Scottsdale at Riverwalk, it’s that digital is changing the game for marketing, public relations and advertising and what an exciting time it is to be working in the agency world. But, of course with a panel that consisted of…
Chris Petroff, vice president of marketing for the Greater Phoenix Economic Council
Todd Bresnahan, chief operating officer for Lane Terrelever
Sheila Kloefkorn, CEO & founder of KEO Marketing
John Alpaugh, CEO of Cybermark International and former CMO of Petsmart
Todd Speranzo, vice president of marketing for Avella
…those were not the only takeaways of the event.
Today is the age of the consumer. Kloefkorn made a notable point about the importance of giving strategic advising to clients regarding their customer relations. About 96 percent of people receive a marketing message that wasn’t well-targeted. Understanding your clients’ customers, putting that hyper-focus on them, is key in effective marketing.
Once you have a firm understanding of your or your clients’ customers, you can use digital to your advantage. You have to be careful though and constantly question why you’re using a particular digital service. Alpaugh explained that there are so many shiny objects to chase in the digital world that you really need to have a customizable plan for each client and know exactly what you’re trying to accomplish.
People in agencies bring different experiences and backgrounds to the table, so is it better to have a specific skill set or something more general? I think the consensus of the night is that you need both. Kloefkorn made the point that since things are moving so fast, your agency needs to be very agile. To be successful, one needs to be able to learn quickly. The way businesses operate today is quite different from even just three years ago. Agencies need to be ahead of their clients and be able to respond quickly.
Bresnahan went on to explain that it’s great to hone in on one particular skill, have a specialty, but also be able to do general tasks. I think that no longer are the days where you specialize in one area, especially with small companies and agencies. Being able to do it all and well is becoming necessary if you want to be ahead of the game. Digital marketing needs to be personal and specific to an audience. It’s not always okay to outsource because the knowledge of the client and customer don’t always get communicated and transferred to the third party.
Now to come full circle, a great starting point to doing it well is to have that understanding of both the client and customer. Once that’s established then you can create content targeted to the audience and market that content effectively so that the message gets to the right person through the right channel. There are a lot of opportunities in digital and there are definitely more to come. It’s become the democratization of marketing, and it’s really the level playing field as Alpaugh so eloquently explained. Our job is to figure out how we can make it most valuable to our clients.
What are your thoughts? How are you making your clients’ use of various digital services most valuable?
Last point, Topgolf Scottsdale at Riverwalk, where the event was held, is definitely worth checking out if you’re looking for something to do! The venue is fresh and the atmosphere is lively. There seems to be plenty to keep customers entertained. And, the service was outstanding with very friendly workers.