It’s nearly time to sit down and figure out budgets for the year to come. One of the areas staffing industry leaders will be looking into is marketing, which is important not only to attract clients and candidates but also to create and maintain a strong brand image. How exactly to allocate marketing dollars in the most effective way will depend on the staffing firm and its own particular goals, but here are some aspects of marketing to consider in the year ahead:
Consider What Others are Doing
Looking at the ways other companies are thinking of structuring their marketing spending in 2015 can give staffing professionals some guidelines for their own planning. A recent report from Teradata and Econsultancy asked senior marketers at enterprise companies what they expect to see in marketing budgets in the year ahead. They overwhelmingly expect digital budgets to rise, the survey found. A little over one-third of respondents said they will see increases in mobile spending, and about one in five say they will spend more on content marketing, MarketingProfs reported.
Which Methods Support Your Strategies?
It may also be useful to look at possible marketing methods through the lens of overall strategies a staffing firm is using. For example, according to Forbes, thought leadership and authenticity are both “in” as stances that will increase brand reputation and credibility. These aren’t line items on a budget that staffing firm marketers can simply allocate funds toward, of course. However, overarching directions like these can help staffing firms decide where to concentrate.
For example, thought leadership is best accomplished through content creation, whether written, video, podcast or something else. It’s not going to be easy to convey through ads on social media or search engines, though it may well be linked to them. With this in mind, the budget may skew more heavily toward content.
Authenticity is even harder to budget for, but digging a little deeper into what authentic marketing looks like can help staffing firms make a plan for how they will accomplish this and what kind of funding it will need. This may mean more employee ownership over marketing tasks, or it could mean a series of video testimonials – the possibilities are many.
Don’t Forget Mobile
Mobile Internet use has been growing for years – and so should staffing agencies’ mobile marketing budgets. If everything a staffing agency offers online is already mobile-optimized and running well, it may still be a good idea to plan to keep up with any updates and maintain fresh content. Agencies with less-than-perfect mobile offerings need to budget quite a bit more into mobile marketing in 2015. This is no longer a negotiable part of a marketing budget, and firms that fail to adapt to mobile will lose out on candidate and potential client awareness alike.
What Worked This Year?
Sitting down to make a 2015 marketing budget is a great time to go over 2014 so far and determine what is useful and what isn’t. It is important to be ruthless about this, no matter how fun a particular method may be to implement. If it does not generate ROI, it is not worth keeping on for 2015.
According to a blog on The Staffing Stream, this process can be hard, especially if it involves realizing an established marketing tradition just doesn’t work. It may be easier to focus on thinking of what else the staffing agency can do in the absence of marketing that doesn’t work. No matter how it’s framed, evaluating the state of the marketing strategies for 2014 is important to have a successful 2015.
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