December 13, 2022
Congratulations! We have officially made it to the end of the year. Are you tired? Or do you feel accomplished? We hope it’s the latter! The BlueByrd team has been hard at work this year working with B2C and B2B companies in healthcare, oil & gas, chemicals, manufacturing, leadership development, software, financial services, robotics, and senior living industries. We doubled in headcount and revenue this year and we couldn’t be more proud or thankful to our partners and clients for choosing to work with us. Cheers to another amazing year in 2023!
We hope you learn a little something, or at the least, find it interesting what each of our BlueByrds have learned from this year.
In 2022 I learned that scaling a business is hard. Coming out of the pandemic led to a host of supply chain and workforce issues that were unexpected for us and our customers. BlueByrd grew this year, doubling our headcount from last year, but what I am most impressed with is how our clients grew. The amazing staff of BlueByrd consultants did a phenomenal job of helping our clients grow. It was a lot of work with numerous unexpected obstacles, but our consultants and clients worked together to adapt and overcome — growing their businesses and the economy. I am honored to have such great clients that trust BlueByrd to grow their revenue, and to have such a great team to help them deliver.
I think all business leaders have learned a great deal from 2022, and we will be ready for the challenges and blessings ahead in 2023. That’s my take, anyway. The rest of this article reflects the perspectives of the rest of the BlueByrds, who were in the trenches with our clients. I find their insights invaluable, and I hope you do too.
It was hard to pick just one lesson learned, but I picked the one that got me the most excited. Ready? Push the boundaries. This year I sat in different board rooms with different executives for weekly strategy meetings, and I forced myself to push boundaries with them. I learned that pushing boundaries is what they needed to grow their businesses. Asking uncomfortable, but necessary questions around a business strategy, sales and marketing teams, or product purpose created real change this year. If my goal is to grow revenue, and they aren’t hitting their goals, then we need to do something different. Something that hasn’t been thought of. And sometimes that means I have to force my clients out of the comfortable bubble they are used to. Pushing boundaries this year made me a better consultant and it positively impacted my clients' businesses. I am looking forward to 2023, continuing to see the hard work from this year pay off and then some, as we all know, marketing takes time. Results aren’t always instant and a good strategy can take time to execute. LET’S GO!
I've always had an academic belief that alignment is necessary for success, but 2022 made it real. With the economy overheating and then subsequently beginning to cool down, we learned that change is not only inevitable, it can be rapid. A team without shared purpose and without alignment makes everything else harder. Making tough decisions is harder. Choosing where to focus is harder. Deciding what NOT to do is nearly impossible.
We saw these effects a lot this year. Some businesses went into panic mode and chased everything all at once. They're currently operating in a state of chaos. Others realized a change was necessary and did the difficult thing—they got their leaders aligned. They picked a focus. They eliminated the non-essential. They're looking at 2023 with a sense of confidence.
Because of our tactic-agnostic and holistic approach to building marketing strategies, we are required to have an expansive knowledge about as many marketing and media opportunities as possible for our clients. This means we are always learning about and applying a number of different methods, tools, and tactics to our plans. This year in particular, I’ve developed a deeper understanding of the different ways in which OTT is bought (via a trade desk, an aggregator, direct, or perhaps in some cases a blend), how impressions are pushed out (FEP vs CTV, large screen vs other devices), and how the delivery of impressions are monitored.
I learned - and am still practicing the habit - of really slowing down to solidify strategy before jumping into execution. It’s easy to move too fast into tactics because we feel like we can quickly produce results and get a win. But if we aren’t producing the right kind of results, or if they’re not aligned with a solid marketing strategy, our tactical execution will be a misguided effort at best and a complete failure at worst.
At BlueByrd, our proven process is discover, strategize, execute. Strategy work takes time. But following the process in the correct order makes all the difference in terms of results and revenue.
As a new Byrd, I've had a pretty easy time buying into the "ask stupid questions" environment. In fact, the question you think is stupid probably isn't stupid at all. Most of the time, it sparks an innovative thought, whether in yourself or within others on your team, or gives you a greater understanding of a specific topic. Questions are a breeding ground for exploring and discovering ... which is what marketing is all about.
If no one is there to ask the "stupid" questions, who will ever challenge the norm? I don't know about you, but the norm sounds pretty boring to me. Don’t let fear prevent the spark of a good idea. Ask that question. It could be the start of the next big thing.
Lastly, always ask yourself, "Why?" in everything you do. That's the most important question, and you should always have a thoughtful answer.
Pivoting doesn't have to be a negative thing. When dealing with clients, pivoting on projects and priorities is part of it. Most marketers and project managers are used to this in our daily lives. However, this year I learned that pivoting in your career isn't necessarily negative. I was part of a large company’s mass layoff at the beginning of the year. It made me stop to think about my career path again and what I wanted in the long term. I decided I wanted more of a challenge than I was getting at the previous company. Even though the corporation job came with so many perks I couldn't even keep up with them, I didn't end the day fulfilled.
I recently joined BlueByrd and pivoted back to account managing from a project manager role. Returning to a small agency reminded me how much more important my contribution is versus being at a place with over a thousand employees and going through the motions. As I end the year, I am so happy to have been part of that corporate layoff that brought me back to agency life. Every day has its new challenges and being part of a team that truly values my contribution and opinion is the right pivot for my career long term.
Self-confidence hasn’t necessarily been my forte. But over the past year, being a part of the BlueByrd team has helped build up my self-confidence so I can be the best version of myself. At such a young age, I’m so grateful to have found a company that treats me like family and pushes me to grow and to be better than I was yesterday.
When working on larger projects, my head was filled with endless negative “what ifs” that would lead to unnecessary stress. But time and time again, after each of these projects – the same projects I told myself I couldn’t do – I ended up exceeding expectations (and ultimately proving to myself that I’m a badass unicorn).
So, if there’s anything I’ve learned this year, it’s that self-confidence is important. I’m capable of so much more than I ever thought possible, and I can’t wait to see the great heights we soar to in 2023.
Being a part of the BlueByrd family for just one semester has been worth a lifetime filled with knowledge and wisdom. Before joining BlueByrd, I was strictly focused on digital marketing and soon becoming a digital marketer after school. It’s fair to say that BlueByrd has definitely made me open my eyes far beyond holding myself to just digital marketing and allowed me to find interests in content marketing, social media marketing, and surprisingly analytical marketing as well. Connecting with clients and other marketing professionals by attending marketing events, thinking of how messaging conveys the brand promise, and auditing social media results to improve strategy are all things I’ve learned to be comfortable with this semester.
Always doing the right thing, hustling for our clients, and driving revenue growth for clients truly represents what BlueByrd is all about. Being able to experience those core values first-hand is something I’ll never take for granted. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have doubts about whether or not marketing was for me. But with this amazing team and support system, there’s no longer doubt, and I’m excited to see where my marketing career goes from here!
Happy Holidays and Happy New Year! Please don't hesitate to reach out to us if we can support you!
Positioning outlines why your product is unique in comparison to market alternatives, and messaging describes to your target segments what you’ll do to deliver on the promises made in your positioning statement. It is a powerful one-two punch, and you need to be able to communicate yours before you start spending money on tactics.
Properly understood, the job of a marketing department is to drive revenue for the company. Some marketers do so by building and maintaining a brand, others focus on generating new leads, and others still focus on enabling sales to close more quickly and consistently. A good company with a mature marketing department does all of these things, even if they focus on some areas more than others. But there’s one area of revenue generation where the marketing department is often relegated to a passive participant or even outright excluded: pricing.
Companies everywhere are looking to cut overhead and other costs to keep up with a changing market and an economic recession. That usually means that marketing budgets are the next to go. Much like during the pandemic, businesses will have to pivot and discover new marketing solutions to combat the economic recession, inflation, and other market changes.
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