Starting a business can be hard work; you will need to put in a lot of effort to simply raise start-up funds and get your business off the ground.
Even before COVID-19 hit, many start-ups struggled to survive. It's thought as many as 70% of businesses fail within their first 10 years. With the world's economy contracting as a result of the pandemic, it is now more difficult than ever to thrive as a start-up.
To survive, you have to be able to offer value to your audience. But most importantly, you have to be able to sell your products and services to them. To do this, you need a marketing team to drive sales for your services and products. This team can also increase your lifetime value by decreasing churn (the number of customers who stop using your product or service over time) by carrying out churn analysis.
While COVID-19 and all the associated precautions are still in the picture, many businesses are utilising some remote working to survive. In order to keep your business running, you might want to consider building a remote marketing team. Marketing is one of the most important aspects of business and requires expert knowledge. You need to tap into the expertise of your marketing team to be sure you're passing across the right information about your brand to your target audience.
If you are operating some form of remote working, it can be difficult to bring your team together. You need to think about innovative ways you can build a team of individuals working from different locations. This might sound daunting, but it is possible to benefit from building a remote marketing team. It will give you the opportunity to access a larger pool of talent, to tap into their knowledge, to reduce operational costs, to leverage technology and reduce employee turnover.
Even before the pandemic it was known that employees are happier, more effective and more productive when they work from home. They are also less stressed because they don't have to commute and report to an office every day.
When proper workflow procedures are not in place, it affects team productivity. Another thing that can make the team less effective is poor communication. To ensure your marketing team is productive, the right culture must be in place.
Here are some tips for you for building an effective remote marketing team.
1. Hire the right team members
The first thing you want to ensure is that your employees are the right people for the job. Your marketing team must be comfortable with working remotely. Besides their marketing knowledge, they must be organised, creative, highly motivated, deeply insightful, able to work with data and to keep the data safe. Finding the right people can be hard work but the investment will pay off in the long term.
Look for candidates that have experience in a virtual team environment. They should be able to work with different communication and collaboration tools efficiently. They should be proactive and be able to make decisions independently.
During the interview, pay attention to the details. Don't overlook their communication style. Consider using a personality test to ensure you're hiring the people with the right personality traits to improve your company culture.
2. Share your company's vision and values and create clear guidelines
Make sure it's clear what you're working towards and the things you're aspiring to. Each team member needs to see this vision as their own so that you can be sure you're all heading in the same direction.
Create a mission statement that shows the company's long-term aspirations. Remind the team of the mission statement during meetings so they know it by heart and aren't distracted from the end goal. Document these visions, objectives, and goals and share them with your remote marketing team.
Communication is key when it comes to managing a remote team. Creating clear guidelines is a good way to make your team communicate consistently. Create an employee handbook. Apart from the fact it helps keep staff aligned, makes them efficient, and keeps them on board, it also ensures that staff aren't breaking any rules and regulations.
As a leader, you have to set an example so that others can follow your footsteps. To be transparent, get your team involved in every project, set clear expectations, tell them about yourself and discuss other subjects outside work with them.
3. Hold meetings regularly
One major challenge of working remotely is that staff are working in different places and sometimes different time zones. Create a friendly and open environment with your team so you can understand the individual personalities in the team. Encourage staff to be open by reaching out to them regularly. Meet with each member of the team at least once a week. Organise a virtual hangout and over time, you will feel more like a big family.
4. Organise your work and give deadlines
Running multiple projects and coordinating remote workers can be problematic when you're not there to physically supervise. To avoid common problems, you need to implement project management systems, set and share rules with everyone, and always remember to follow the rules yourself. You also need to organise your data and make sure it's available to everyone that needs it.
A good way to keep the team on track is to use a time-tracking tools and setting clear and realistic deadlines. This can help you increase their productivity and review their performances.
5. Don't overlook security
Your marketing team has access to the company's most sensitive data such as account details, addresses, sales records and other sensitive details. Since your marketing team is remote, they will be accessing this information via the internet. If they use insecure technology to access this information, it could put the firm at risk of a security breach. They may even breach privacy and data protection regulations such as CCPA compliance.
To minimise risks, provide password protection tools. Encourage employees to update their passwords every thirty days. Make sure you install software and security updates whenever there is an update or a new security patch and enforce the use of secure browsers.
6. Use the right tools
The importance of using the right tools cannot be overemphasized. If you are managing your team remotely, you will depend on technology for communication, research, collaboration, project management and many other workplace functions.
Popular tools for remote working include:
- Slack and Zoom which aid communication
- Confluence which is used for documentation and guide creation
- Airtable and Asana which are good project management tools
- Google Calendar and Trello which are good for creating shared calendars.
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic means you should be focussing on implementing the right tools and technologies to support your remote marketing team, so you're equipped to make the best out of this current situation.
Managing a remote team can be challenging if your team is not on the same page. Create a mission statement that reflects the company's visions and goals. Be transparent. Make sure you hold regular team meetings - communication skills are essential when you are building a remote team. Make sure you hire people with the right qualities for remote working. Love your team and don't make your discussion all about work.
Make sure you implement robust security measures. When deciding on the right tools to use, consider your team members and their preferences.
Follow these tips and you are bound to build an effective remote marketing team.
Copyright 2020. Article was made possible by site supporter Arianna Lupi, Outreach Humans