Marketing in “The New Normal Economy”

On February 28, TribalVision Founder, Chris Ciunci joined panelists from Constant Contact, The Washington Trust Company, and other national and local marketing experts to discuss eMarketing and technology at the Providence Business News’ summit, held at the Providence Marriott. The entire TribalVision team was very excited to participate through Chris’s involvement in the summit, and the event spurred a lot of great conversations around our new Westminster Street office both before and after it took place.

One of the things we discussed most was a key element at the summit: Marketing in a “new normal economy.” Says TribalVision VP of Client Experience, Damien Cabral,

“The way business was done before this recession and before the Internet just can’t be done anymore. You can’t expect to get the same results that you used to now that we’re into this new operating environment. So the key is to position yourself differently. You can’t just bang people over the head anymore. You have to provide value and you have to stay in front of consumers. One of the best ways to do that is to be positioned as a thought leader and provide content in numerous different fashions. That could be through things as diverse as releasing white papers or speaking at local events.

The other key is when you’re at those events, you don’t want to promote yourself at all. You’re promoting yourself just by being there and providing relevant content. The old school way of thinking is, while you’re at those events, you plug your company and yourself three or four different times throughout the event. The new way of thinking is you don’t plug yourself once. You go up there, make sure you provide great content, and if you do a good enough job, then you might not get a call that same day or the next day, but something might happen six months down the road, and that’s going to have a much higher chance of turning into a closed deal than just sending out a direct mail piece.”

Around here, we think of this as the “Pinterest Method of Marketing,” in that it’s not directly self-serving. Instead, you focus on creating great content, put it out there wisely, and everything else comes together. Of course, that’s all well and good for a marketing company, but for the average small business, content marketing for community exposure and establishment of thought leadership isn’t exactly second nature. Cabral has a helpful tip for those business owners as well.

“Start online with social media and build a base. Get used to developing content and make sure you’re dedicated to doing it on an ongoing basis because this is not something you want to start and then stop. Once you get some traction in operating in that new way, start to reach out to your local chamber of commerce, or take a look at other events that are coming up. Know what your target is. Sometimes you’re not even targeting your direct end consumer. Sometimes you’re going to target people who are in the middle.

For example, if you’re in professional services, you might want to get in front of small- to medium-sized businesses, but perhaps there’s a side route to get to that by targeting accountants and lawyers…who have a large client list of these businesses to whom they can potentially refer you to if you do a good job and can build that trust. You don’t always have to think about going straight to the end consumer.”

In this “new normal economy,” content marketing is quite literally the way of the future. TribalVision can help you find the paths that will get you on your way, through marketing research, content development, social media management, and more. Connect with us online or stop by the new office. We’re always excited to meet our neighbors.