8 Years! Where has that time gone???
I set up Creationz Marketing in 2013 to allow me to work with a range of businesses with a vast array of budgets and requirements. I had already at this point worked in-house for companies for 14 years and felt the time was right to branch out and steer my own ship as it were.
Was it that easy? Not really…when you first go from working in-house to running your own business there is a very steep learning curve to go through:
- How do you run a business
- How do you win and retain clients
- What extra services do I need to be able to do – accounting, IT, insurances, etc
- What support do I need when income is tight
- Will clients want the services I offer?
Today, as I celebrate 8 years with the team, I am reflecting back over this time and can honestly say that it was a good decision and I have been very fortunate to work with amazing clients across the UK that have been able to see the transition and go on their journey with them. Some of our highlights include:
- Moving into our new office in Beeston
- Taking on my first employee in 2018 – now a team of 4!
- Setting up an Internship Programme with Nottingham Trent University – we are 2 years into this programme
- Running events in London, Dublin, Dubai, India & Germany, Vienna and more events planned.
- Helping businesses to pivot in-person events to fully online during the pandemic
- Speaking at client events on the power of marketing – in-person and online
- Creating a network of people that support our business as we grow.
But you may be reading this and thinking that’s great but so what?
And you would be right! 8 years might not seem like a milestone birthday like 10, 15 or 20. To us, it is, especially after the year we have just experienced with Covid and the restrictions both we and our clients have faced and felt it is important that we all stop, take stock and celebrate the fact we are here helping our clients.
So, how has marketing changed over the past 8 years.
Marketing never truly sits still but the pace at which these changes are happening is helping us to shape our services to clients to ensure they are supporting their businesses in the right way and include:
- Not Just Social
Over the past 8 years, there has been a reliance on social media as the only marketing a business needs as it is free. Whilst this was the main benefit in the beginning, now businesses need more time, bigger budgets for ad spend, and much more to make social media their only source of marketing. We help businesses to systemize their marketing so that social media is a marketing pillar but NOT the only pillar.
- Time to remove the invisibility cloak
Over the past few years, it has become very apparent that businesses can no longer hide and rely on loyalty from existing clients. The speed of the internet, social media and choice had made that loyalty disappear. If we want something and cannot get it from our usual supplier, we look elsewhere. Just look at how many more orders were placed on Amazon over the past year when shops were closed. By helping businesses to be visible, but in the right way, it keeps that awareness and loyalty alive – even as circumstances change.
- Direct Mail Has a Place
As inboxes get fully, direct mail is becoming popular again – have a think about the post you receive, how much is now from your suppliers and clients. It is a great way of letting your customers know that you are thinking of them. It doesn’t have to be costly – a simple postcard or letter can make all the difference.In a world where we are connected online, could you give your clients something to take stock and think of you? We have lots of ideas and happy to have a chat.
- Power of CRM
One of the biggest areas for marketing at the minute is the power of your own database. Again with many businesses relying on social media, contacts are not taken online and into CRM system or even a simple excel spreadsheet. We help clients understand that putting all their eggs into social media channels can be dangerous as you don’t own the foundations you are building on. Could you still contact your vlients and contacts if social media shut down your account for a period of time? There are many cases in the news recently about Instagram Influencers who have had their accounts shut down overnight and have lost 100,000 followers etc. Do you have a plan to build a database?
- Consistency – Not spreading yourself too thin
With over 20 years of experience in marketing, one of the biggest changes is businesses no longer having a written marketing plan that helps shape the marketing efforts. Marketing is more ad-hoc, inconsistent, and following a scattergun approach. This can really impact where marketing time, effort, and budgets are spent. We are passionate about helping our clients to have a plan – it doesn’t have to be lengthy but by having a plan, you can see what works and what doesn’t and be a lot more consistent.
- No Marketing Magpies Here
Hands up, who has been swayed by the latest marketing tool or gadget? To be honest, most of us have. I can hold my hand up to this when I first set up the business, Chatbots were all the rage and I spent an afternoon setting it up to realise it was not right for us at that time. We help clients get really clear on what they want to achieve and put a plan in place so that it is harder to get swayed by something else. Over the last year, a lot of businesses had to pivot or they would have lost business and by being clear, we were able to help them pivot successfully by being clear and getting being marketing magpies.
- Understanding and knowing your numbers
We help businesses to understand their numbers, whether it is social media traffic, website traffic, budget spend it can all help. We were able to help a business fund a new website project by reviewing their marketing budget, reviewing where they were getting clients from, and showing them where they could make savings. They have always advertised in directories that didn’t generate any traffic or bring leads into the business – by understanding the numbers, they were able to get the new website they needed to make the business reflect current online conditions. Do you know your numbers? If not, let’s have coffee?
- Get the help and support
We have noticed over the past 8 years that businesses are seeing the benefit of outsourced marketing teams at their disposal. Sometimes someone outside the business can offer a different perspective. Having a team of experts on-call can actually save the business money than training and employing someone full-time. We have seen first-hand the power of how we can help clients, from as little as sending a monthly newsletter, right through to running full marketing campaigns. We become an extension to the businesses we work with, part of the team!
What does the future hold?
Whilst we are looking back over the past 8 years, we also have eyes on the future and we are so looking forward to what that future may bring. We are constantly reviewing and adapting our services, we have some big plans to support more businesses across the country to get the marketing support they need. Watch this space.
Our thanks go to Steve Edwards – Steve Edwards Photography for the fabulous images on this blog.