Marketing is ever-evolving. Social media platforms rise and fall out of favor, artificial intelligence upends content creation, and search engine optimization (SEO) strategies change quickly. For marketers, staying on top of these and other changes is part of the job.
But how? Today, I’m sharing some strategies to help keep your marketing team up-to-date and at the forefront of the profession.
Emphasize continuous learning
New marketing trends, tools and strategies emerge all the time, so encourage your marketing team to make learning a daily habit. Allocate time for reading industry books, blogs and publications. Subscribing to relevant newsletters and setting up news alerts can keep them informed about the latest trends and developments.
Listening to marketing-related podcasts is also an excellent way to stay updated. Many podcasts delve into various aspects of marketing, offering valuable insights and interviews with industry experts. Encourage your team to explore these resources.
Don’t expect all this reading and listening to occur in people’s downtime, either. At Boomer Consulting, we have the “First 15,” where we devote the first 15 minutes of our workday to reading professional development books.
Invest in professional development
Just as you allocate professional development budgets for your accounting professionals, doing the same for your marketing team is essential. This investment showcases your commitment to their growth and ensures they have the financial resources (and time) to attend training programs, workshops and courses.
To enhance their skills, consider specialized marketing certifications, such as Google Ads or HubSpot Inbound Marketing. These certifications provide valuable knowledge and give your firm a competitive edge in the digital marketing space.
Send them to industry conferences
Industry conferences are invaluable for networking and staying updated on the latest marketing trends. Allocate time and resources for your marketing team to attend relevant conferences and summits. These events provide opportunities to hear from thought leaders, participate in workshops and network with peers from other firms.
Encourage your team to actively engage in these events by taking notes, sharing insights with colleagues and implementing new strategies they've learned. This ensures they apply the knowledge they gain to benefit your firm.
Join peer network communities
Establishing connections with other marketing professionals in the accounting industry is essential. Encourage your team to join industry-specific peer networks like the Boomer Marketing and Development Circle, where they can connect with peers. These communities provide a platform for sharing experiences, seeking advice and learning from others' successes and failures.
This peer-to-peer learning fosters a collaborative environment and ensures that your team is collectively staying updated.
Mentorship and cross-training
Pair junior marketers with experienced mentors within the firm. Mentorship programs help bridge the knowledge gap by providing guidance, sharing best practices and encouraging continuous learning. These relationships can be instrumental in the professional growth of your marketing team.
Additionally, consider cross-training opportunities. Encourage marketers to work closely with other departments, such as business development or IT, to better understand your firm's operations. This cross-functional knowledge can lead to more strategic and effective marketing initiatives.
Measure and adjust
Regularly evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing team's training and development efforts. Monitor key performance indicators (KPIs) to assess the impact of their newly acquired skills and knowledge. If certain strategies don’t deliver the expected results, be willing to pivot and adjust your approach.
Keep an open line of communication with your marketing team. Solicit their feedback on the training programs and resources provided. This feedback loop ensures that your firm's investments in their professional development align with their needs and aspirations.
Keeping your marketing team trained and up-to-date in the fast-paced marketing world is vital for your firm's growth and success. By fostering a culture of continuous learning, investing in professional development, attending industry conferences, promoting peer learning and providing mentorship and cross-training opportunities, you can empower your marketing team to excel in their roles and drive your firm's marketing initiatives to new heights. Remember that a well-trained and up-to-date marketing team is an asset that can help your accounting firm stand out in today's competitive landscape.