Blog NXT Stage

Marketing Strategies for All Stages of Growth

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Author: Mark Nardone, Chief Marketing Officer at PAN Communications, headshot
Mark NardoneChief Marketing Officer
growth marketing

No matter what phase of growth your company is experiencing – start up, mid-stage or late stage – it’s critical for your marketing program to be aligned to your growth strategies so that teams are unified across all brand-building initiatives.

This can be a period of incredible change for your brand. Whether you’re moving out of the early adopter stage and into a bigger market opportunity, or a startup just scratching the surface when it comes to creativity and awareness, now is the time to employ a strong integrated marketing and PR strategy to reach that next step.

Public relations can no longer stand on its own, especially for brands looking to create deeper connections with their audiences. A successful growth and communications strategy requires an integrated approach. Owned, earned, shared and paid media all work together and support each other – driving one consistent message while effectively aligning resources to spur action and outcome. It’s important to understand the power of integration while moving your brand into its next growth phase. People drive that connection and personalization fuels the engagement.

NXT dtage_growth marketingIntroducing PAN’s ‘NXT Stage’ Resource Center

To assist companies with this integrated journey, PAN has tapped into our 25+ years of experience and success with brands across all stages of growth to develop a model program called ‘NXT stage’. This program offers a library of resources that will help guide growing brands towards scalable market success. Take a look at our microsite filled with tools to up-level your marketing expertise; read below for further integrated advice or check out our press release here, announcing the launch of ‘NXT Stage’.

To assist companies with this integrated journey, PAN has tapped into our 25+ years of experience and success with brands across all stages of growth to develop a model program called ‘NXT stage’.

Integrate Your Marketing Teams for Success

A strong first step starts with a skills audit for your marketing team.

Success requires a data-driven, customer-focused team. You’ll need a diverse set of experiences and true collaboration to move your ideas forward. But, it’s not as easy as it sounds.

In fact, 21 percent of marketers feel that they are not effectively integrating with other marketing teams, including content marketing, lead gen, PR, social, digital, etc. (source: Is It Time to Reengineer your Marketing and Communications Department?, PAN Communications).

growing brands

If this sounds familiar, it may be time to make some tough decisions. Do you have what you need to navigate through a multi-channel experience? Strategic planning, storytelling, emotional marketing, measurement and analysis – all come together to drive brand awareness and growth.

But it’s not just internal teams that need alignment. Look across all resources and assets – integrated departments, agencies, sales function and channel operations – to gain a clear line of sight on what you’ll need to drive growth at this critical juncture.

Full integration takes time. Start by bringing together your PR and inbound marketing efforts to form a cohesive communications strategy that drives leads for your growing brand. Our latest eBook can help.

Know your audience better than anyone.

A big challenge for brands in all growth stages is personalization and segmentation.

Can you answer the most important question all marketers must address – what is your company’s ideal customer profile?

Understanding behaviors, journeys and content consumption while analyzing data will be a very important step as you stay true to developing buyer personas. In fact, utilizing buyer personas will make your website 2-5X more effective, simply by knowing who you’re targeting. Once your buyer personas are created, you should be constantly adjusting your messaging and positioning to meet those buyer needs and current challenges at every stage of the buyers journey. According to this year’s Content Fitness Report, 78% of marketers are adjusting the tone of their content heading into 2021. Are you one of them?

According to this year’s Content Fitness Report, 78% of marketers are adjusting the tone of their content heading into 2021.

Account-Based Marketing (ABM) might be the best example of highly customized content and segmentation. By mapping personas to your existing content, you create a master grid that can identify where you have gaps in content and other places where you can leverage pre-existing assets. If there are important personas in these gaps, you know exactly what content needs building.

ABM is a complement to, not in competition with, content marketing. This, once again, shows the necessity of a truly integrated multi-skill set marketing team – to be able to move effortlessly between PR to social to content to ABM. It’s all part of your winning growth marketing strategy.

Learn How to Master Buyer Personas Like a Pro. Download the eBook.

Hire an Integrated Agency for Agility

Despite the documented effectiveness of segmentation, only 23 percent of CMOs feel they are producing the right information for the right audience and delivering it at the right time.

Deploying an integrated agency (or multiple agencies) with multi-channel skills could be the secret sauce within your company’s successful path to growth, at any stage. Play to the needs of your audiences and put a laser focus on each channel. This can include a blend of paid, earned and owned efforts, with the right balance and agility for each program.

growing brands_growth marketing

If your team lacks experience in these marketing channels, you might be missing out. In fact, 94% of those who used influencer marketing believed the tactic to be effective. Is your team agile enough to jump on lucrative marketing channels? If not, it might be time to reassess.

Global Efforts Benefit From Integrated Approach

The world of PR has changed, especially in terms of how, when and where we communicate. This has opened up a new world for PR, quite literally. Regardless of location, a firm, a team and/or individual can have a major impact on a company’s global PR strategy.

Thought leadership and influencer marketing are uniquely suited to global efforts. Local reporters and influencers know these markets better than anyone. These strategies can jump-start developing relationships.

There may be other differences to accommodate. For example, there are more paid media placements and fewer earned opportunities in some countries. Or, perhaps there are fewer financial trade publications in one market compared to another. These factors should impact the PR metrics being set – as one region might have a higher likelihood of success simply based on the opportunities that exist.

Growth Marketing Requires an Integrated Playbook

Growth marketing is redefining the very definition of marketing. It’s not enough to drive top-of-funnel activity, it’s about gaining more engaged customers. Brands need to remain top of mind and engage at ideal moments throughout the journey, with connected content that meets their needs. It requires an integrated playbook – bringing together all marketing teams, tapping into every channel and forming that emotional connection. In fact, emphasis on emotional connection doubled in 2H 2020, according to PAN’s Content Fitness Report.

Download the 2020 Content Fitness Report for more insights.

Traditional tactics no longer cut it. If your growing brand hasn’t turned to integration yet, it might be time to reengineer your marketing and communications department. Your brand’s internal marketing department structure must align with the modern, data-driven services firms are providing today. That is the key to truly effective growth marketing.

Discover PAN’s NXT Stage Resource Center.

growth marketing

An image of PAN's Brand Experience Report on the Potentials and pitfalls of AI for marketers

In our annual Brand Experience Report, we asked marketers and customers how they are using and experiencing AI to better understand how the technology is changing that relationship.