Getting Engaged: A Marriage of Community Involvement
The best way to see beyond your own front door is to simply open it up and step outside.
When it comes to running a business, that seemingly obvious trick can easily become lost as the never-ending list of in-house issues ceaselessly pile up. From staffing and training to sales and budgets, sometimes we get so focused on what’s gong on under our own roof that we forget there is an entire world mere steps away.
The hubris of indifference or neglect to the community that supports you is bad trap to fall into for any business; however, for a marketing agency like M3 Group, it can be a fatal flaw of Greek tragedy proportions.
You hear a lot of fancy jargon — from automation and verticals to integration and optimization — when it comes to marketing. Yet when you strip away all the insider-baseball techno minutiae, you’re left with a pretty sparse list of what good marketing entails: understanding people.
And to do that successfully, you have to get actually get out among them.
Community engagement and involvement is not just good for business, it is good business. Not only does it assist in solidifying your team by buttressing a positive workplace culture, but every company has a beneficial responsibility to create a positive impact on where business is done.
Engagement in the community fosters trust and shows your commitment to the region that has taken your company where it is today. It strengthens the bond you have with your current audience while simultaneously expanding your influence to places you might not expect. While conventional advertising is important, word of mouth can also carry a long way.
Some companies can fall into the trap of expertise by believing they know everything their audience wants or needs. But when you’re out interacting with your audience, you are able to organically get valuable feedback on issues overlooked and needs unfulfilled. This is the perfect way to arm yourself with some new knowledge and a broader understanding about what truly to both the decision-makers and the people those decisions impact.
There’s also the networking that can be done at events and engagements in the community that may not happen by cold calling or trying to connect over email. That face-to-face communication is sometimes the best way to foster collaboration.
It’s also a great place to meet prospective new hires. It’s much easier to email in a resume or call and schedule an interview, but it shows real commitment to come to support a community event and network. It gives you a chance to see how a prospect could fit into your organization’s culture, which could give you more insight into that person than you would be able to get from an interview alone. This outreach also lets potential hires see you and how your company is viewed by the public.
Community is a dialogue, not a monologue. In order to follow the plot, you have to make the effort to show up, listen and understand.