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remote working

Will marketing become a remote working profession after COVID-19?

If you’ve enjoyed working from home these past few months, you might be in luck: remote working could be here to stay. Chris Stappard, Managing Director of Edward Reed Recruitment, explains why flexible and remote working could become the norm for marketing professionals after the pandemic has passed...

At the start of 2020, flexible working was viewed by many as a perk or a privilege — something that an employee might work their way up to after a few months or even years at a company. But then the COVID-19 outbreak hit, and all that changed overnight as businesses and agencies across the country were forced to start working from home full-time. 

Now, even though the lockdown is beginning to ease, most people are still working from their kitchen tables and home studies, and many marketing professionals haven’t set foot in an office building for over three months. With the government continuing to advise that those that can work from home, should work from home, it looks as though most businesses will be working remotely until at least the late autumn. 

But what will happen when the danger has passed, or a vaccine is found? I think there’s a lot of evidence to suggest that flexible and remote working may become the new normal for a lot of professions — including marketing. Here, I’ll take a look at just some of the reasons that the industry might embrace remote working. 

Employees have enjoyed working remotely 

There’s plenty of evidence to show that workers in most professions prefer remote working, but it’s especially popular with those in the marketing sector. Over 90% of marketing professionals say they prefer to have some say over how and where they work, according to a survey from Marketing Week. 

Employees cite all sorts of reasons for preferring remote and flexible working, including skipping the commute, being able to plan their working day around childcare and other personal commitments, and having a better work/life balance. It’s clear that this can be a much better way to work for employees and, as a result, they may be much more likely to petition their employers for this to continue after the lockdown is over. 

Flexible and remote working may help with recruitment 

Now that employees have enjoyed a taste of flexible working, I think it’s safe to assume that it may become a higher priority for workers when job hunting. And that means, if employers want to be ahead of the competition in the race for the best talent, they’ll need to build flexibility and remote working into new roles. If staff start to see this as the bare minimum, rather than a perk, employers will need to start offering it as standard if they want to find the best hires. 

It’s not just about offering an attractive workplace culture to prospective hires, though: it could make recruitment easier for employers, too. If staff can work remotely for some or all of the working week, then staff won’t need to live within commuting distance, removing the need for lengthy commutes or relocation. This would greatly broaden the talent pool employers have access to and allow companies to recruit staff at a national rather than local level. So, I wouldn’t be surprised if this is something that employers are keen to capitalise on after the lockdown has eased.

It can help cut costs and increase profit margins

Over the past few months, we’ve seen that it’s possible for businesses and agencies to operate efficiently while working from home. It just goes to show that remote working can be a productive and effective way to work, and that it doesn’t necessarily have to result in decreased output or a loss of profit. As a result, I expect that many businesses will be wondering whether it’s really necessary to spend a sizeable chunk of revenue on an office space anymore. This is especially relevant when you consider that the lockdown has been a tough trading period for a lot of businesses, so any opportunity to cut costs will look very appealing. 

In future, I think that marketing companies may make the switch to working remotely for most or part of the week, allowing employers to downsize their premises and save money. It may even become the norm for businesses to hire meeting space on an ad hoc basis for client meetings, removing the need for a private office space of any kind. 

Tools and software are improving all the time 

Remote working wouldn’t be possible without the internet and, these days, employers have more tech and tools at their disposal to maximise productivity during home working than ever before. Software like Skype, Zoom, Slack, and Microsoft Teams can facilitate meetings and collaboration between employees, and monitoring software can also be used to ensure that staff are using their time productively. 

The availability and affordability of these technologies means that businesses of almost any size can make the shift to home working with minimum fuss and expense. And, as employers have seen just how effective tech can be, I expect that they may be more willing to consider allowing staff to work remotely full-time.

Whether you’ve loved or hated working from home through the pandemic, I think we can all admit that things are unlikely to go back to the way they were before the lockdown any time soon. And, with many businesses starting to wake up to the benefits of remote and flexible working, I imagine it’s only a matter of time before this becomes the norm in the marketing world.  

The growing demand for marketing software and tech

By Leadforensics

As B2B marketers evolve to working in an entirely digital space, the need for innovative, reliable marketing technology to support their business strategy has never been clearer.   

In the current climate, B2B organizations are adapting to an entirely online approach. With no face-to-face meetings or events and their teams working remotely, software plays a crucial part in securing the best marketing results. With so many technologies available — and so many channels, strategies and teams it can support — there’s no excuse to dismiss the importance of investing in the right software. 

To get the most out of the software you opt to use, it’s crucial to include it in your business strategy from the outset. This way, you can check your budget, and assess whether or not you have the resources in place to fully understand, manage and properly utilize the tool. Set clear objectives, and ensure the tech you implement is making your life easier, not more difficult. Select tools that integrate with each other seamlessly, provide a simple and intuitive user experience, and have an easy and supportive onboarding process.

Lead Forensics is an innovative reverse IP tracking software that helps transform the lead generation process for B2B organizations. It works by tracking your business website and, by utilizing a global leading database of business IP addresses, identifying the business your website visitors are coming from. Users receive real-time notifications, contact details of key decision-makers and detailed user journeys. This way, they can reach out to the right person, from the right organization, at exactly the right time. Whether it’s a first-time visitor, a pipeline prospect or an existing customer, users are provided with the insight they need to conduct the ultimate follow-up. 

To find out more about the power of reverse IP tracking software, and how to secure marketing results in a remote working environment, download the B2B marketing managers’ guide to remote working success. From the benefits and challenges of working remotely and boosting motivation, to managing teams and embracing tech — discover everything you need to know. 

WEBINAR REWIND: Motivation Hacks for B2B Success While Working Remotely

If you missed last week’s Lead Forensics webinar about WFH motivation hacks, you can now watch the whole presentation again at your leisure.

In the fifteen minute session, you’ll discover:

  • The power of automation
  • Why communication matters
  • How to chose incentives that motivate everyone
  • How to align your teams from home
  • About your tech stack: CRM, website tracking and more
  • 5 quick-fire tips for boosting productivity, motivation and morale

Click here to watch the webinar in full

Every day, 98% of the businesses visiting your website leave without contacting your team. Wouldn’t it be great if you knew who they were, what pages they visited, and could gain access to contact details of key decision-makers from those visiting businesses.

Lead Forensics software helps more than 10,000 businesses across the globe to generate new business leads, convert existing sales pipeline and unconverted enquiries, win-back lapsed customers and support your existing customers like never before.

Its real-time alerts and in-depth analytics help unlock your website’s potential and keep you one step ahead of your competitors.

Click here for a free, no obligation trial.

How is global working affecting video management?

By Parham Azimi, CEO, Cantemo

The latest iteration of Cisco’s “Visual Networking Index” found that video will account for 82 percent of all online traffic by 2022. That means most of the content your site visitors, leads and potential customers consume will include moving pictures, and all of this needs to be managed well.

In addition to a huge increase in video content production, distributed global teams are now an everyday norm for many companies.

According to an article published in Forbes at the end of 2018, remote working is a standard operating mode for at least 50% of the US population. Employees are beginning to expect a flexible work life and Forbes is predicting that Generation Z workers will expect more choices as to when and where they work.

However, it’s not only employees who are seeing the benefits of working remotely; many employers are reaping the benefits of increased productivity from their remote staff, as highlighted by recruitment organisation Tecla in its 2019 article.

With clear advantages, it’s not surprising that there has been a giant increase in employers embracing distributed teams. However, it doesn’t just promote productivity, it opens up a whole new workforce. This allows businesses to employ well qualified and talented staff based on their qualifications as opposed to where they live. Of course, adapting workflows to enable this presents employers with some challenges. With offices based around the world some staff are starting their day when others are switching the lights off.

How can you ensure smooth and seamless collaboration for creative teams working on the same projects, but in different time zones? The benefits of remote teams mean that organisations are ready to implement technology to make this easier and more efficient. However, industries that work heavily with reams of data are faced with a decision; what solutions are suitable for the job? Is there a solution that not only enables video management, but also enhances it?

When file sharing isn’t enough

When we are thinking about file sharing, we’re considering options such as Dropbox, Google Drive and One Drive. These are popular and low-cost tools that can be a suitable way to handle media when your content library or archive is small. With capabilities to share links and set permissions, sometimes web-based sharing is enough as it does all of this very well. However, its file sharing falls short when being used for more complex workflows, such as collaborative projects that have multiple stakeholders,  teams, timezones. Have you ever tried to find a file that your colleague has mis-named, duplicated or saved in the wrong location? This is where it’s time to consider file management tools. 

The case for Media Management 

Finding lost files wastes valuable time. Add to this the complexity of collaborating with creative teams and clients across multiple locations and you can feel the metaphorical sweat beads starting to form. Metadata may be part of the solution.

Combining AI—which allows computing brain power do the heavy lifting—with rich metadata will provide the tools to make media searchable and easier to find. Automated and bulk metadata tasks can allow for efficient media management. Tagging media enables a huge set of parameters to search for content.

Instead of manually choosing where to file media featuring a family, on a day trip, travelling by train, with their dog, you could choose a better option and make the file discoverable using any one of those search terms. Better still, AI capabilities have now been developed to a point in which it can identify the images within the footage, translate this into metadata and provide the user with the content when searched for.

However, global working creates a challenge when managing how you store your data; metadata needs space and remote teams need scalable storage solutions that are easy to access. How should global businesses be storing their content? Can the right storage increase efficiency? 

Storing files and workflows

With many global organisations recognising their complex storage requirements, time must be spent considering how to use storage and workflows to improve efficiencies on an operational level. Sharing files with global teams and clients for review is often quickly and effectively handled by applying cloud-based workflows.

A cloud-based workflow can route all of the steps in the process for approval, regardless of where staff are located. Cloud-based workflows also drive productivity by taking workflows online and reducing manual steps; this rapidly increases efficiency, often at a lower cost than alternatives. As legacy systems start to creak under the strain of modern working challenges, many organisations are considering whether the cloud holds the solution to streamlined workflows.

Cloud working has become a widely adopted computing term.  Most marketers understand that taking storage power from hardware on premise and placing it in the cloud is beneficial for many reasons. However, when swapping to the cloud an organisation’s first decision is whether to adopt cloud storage or a hybrid. Hybrid cloud is a combination of both cloud storage and on-premise storage. It offers users with flexibility when it comes to file sharing and keeps egress costs at a minimum. Add in proxies, which I’ll address later on, and you’ve got a powerful, modern solution.

An editor may already have several hundred gigabytes of data for just one project, which makes sharing and global collaboration difficult. Projects with a fast turnaround can easily encounter bottlenecks that slow down processes and defeat the objective of a media management solution. Enter: proxies.

Proxies

To avoid a content bottleneck, cloud-based media management solutions should provide the ability to offer proxy workflows, particularly non-linear editors (NLEs). With proxies, editors can edit content and the project timeline without having to use significant amounts of bandwidth that are required when moving the high-resolution files around. Working with and moving much smaller files has cost implications for egress (getting your files back out of the cloud) and should be considered when selecting a vendor for services. 

The right tech is the solution

Whether collaborators are across the hall or across the country, organisations need their staff to have the ability to access, edit and share media easily and quickly. Businesses are now turning to sophisticated media management tools to make it simpler to share media at various stages of production, review, edit, and seek approval – no matter where teams are based. All of the advantages of hybrid cloud-based file management produce fewer obstacles in developing and collaborating on creative content. 

Hassle-free, secure and reliable, hybrid workflows support global organisations while they solve their media management challenges. A customised and robust hybrid cloud platform offers a smart solution that enhances ordinary asset management whilst enabling collaborative working. The benefits of remote working outweigh the challenges; equip your business with the right tools and there’s no reason not to hire the best person for the job, regardless of where they are in the world.