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Marketing The Future: The Role of the Navigator

We are now living in disruptive times. Business leaders in your company, your clients and prospects are all worried about one thing: the future. For their company, their career and even for their children.

While leaders in emerging markets remain optimistic, Western leaders fear a rapidly approaching dystopia. Man Bites Dog’s recent research reveals that the majority of large corporate CEOs believe their own company’s past is brighter than its future. And in this dystopian future the mighty will fall: leaders expect 1 in 6 large competitors to fail by 2023.

We have now passed the tipping point where leaders are more worried about non-traditional competitors than long-standing rivals. And the biggest corporate killer is expected to be their own fickle customers.

One CEO described the new leadership paradigm to me as the difference between driving a car (something else that will soon be obsolete) and riding a motorcross bike. Leaders are now offroad and running their companies faster than ever before, so they must point their strategy further ahead while scanning for competitors in their peripheral vision.

This creates a critical challenge for business leaders because human beings are very poor at anticipating the future with any degree of accuracy. Which means visionaries now have unprecedented influence. Clients are looking for experts who can see beyond these limits. In this uncharted territory, there is a clear opportunity for companies to pivot from past precedent to future orientation: becoming the trusted navigator who, rather than fearing the future, embraces change and sees further.

The old tokens of credibility – best practice, tradition and track record – may now work against you by consigning you to the history books. The ability to adapt again and again is now our best predictor of future success. We are entering an era when credibility must be balanced with agility.

This puts us in the business of predicting the future. And thought leadership holds the key.

Redefining Thought Leadership

Man Bites Dog defines thought leadership as: a strategic idea with the purpose of gaining and conveying competitive advantage by sharing value.

Your strategic idea should strike the right balance between telling your clients something valuable and genuinely new, and promoting a problem you solve, connected to your brand, your product and services, and your area of authority.

Thought leadership is not a tactic: an isolated article, a reaction to breaking news or regulatory change. It’s a strategy: holistic corporate thinking should lead thought and lead your marketing activity.

Thought leadership is also certainly not thought followership. In an era when the speed of the innovation cycle means you can no longer differentiate on your products and services, the only battleground you can win on is your distinctive thinking.

Strategic ideas demonstrate your future orientation and reinforce your authority as a navigator – it’s all prospects have to go on that you are the go-to experts.

So how can you harness the power of strategic ideas to win?

Winning With IDEAS

There are 5 key considerations, for which IDEAS provides a useful acrostic:

  • I stands for Idea: A genuinely new idea should tell your clients something they didn’t know that will help them win in the future. To be a thought leader, you must have the courage to lead thought: to be first and make people think! Bold ideas travel further because they generate their own momentum. Use ROI (Return on Ideas) to make your business case in a risk-averse business.
  • D stands for Diversity: Companies don’t think – people do. We need a diversity of thinkers to challenge groupthink and develop game changing ideas to solve the biggest problems facing business and society.Consider the thinkers and speakers for your organisation. Do they reflect your client base, your workforce and the future workforce you want to recruit? You measure your Gender Pay Gap, but what does your Gender Say Gap look like, for example? Marketers have a tremendous opportunity to accelerate change right now by making diverse experts more visible.
  • E stands for Evidence: Data is critical to helping you see the future with credibility and accuracy. Strategic ideas based on robust evidence enable you to tell a powerful story, tailored for maximum client relevance. To make your idea catch fire you must find the right research methodology to quantify your idea’s scale, direction and impact. Thought leadership is not an isolated article – it’s the start of a movement.
  • A stands for Activation: Once you have developed and evidenced your idea – you must make your idea travel by marshalling appropriate content assets and channels to build reputation, deepen relationships and ultimately generate revenue. The medium should reflect your message. Get creative to generate opportunities for clients to interact with your content, your leadership and business development teams. Corporate thinking is a team activity – empowering thousands of professionals with relevant ideas enables you to become thought leaders at scale.
  • S stands for Sales (or Business Development if you prefer!): Thought Leadership at its best is ideas-led selling. By diagnosing a problem or an opportunity clients didn’t know about, you create a call to action for your prescribed solution and give your leaders and business developers a hook to connect clients to a relevant offer.Being effective at ideas-led selling does not mean emailing clients your report or thudding a white paper on their desk, it’s about having a profitable conversation using that content – using events and meetings to deepen relationships.
Embrace the future

We are living in uncertain times. But you can choose whether to disrupt or be disrupted. You have an opportunity to be the navigator – to see further and share future-oriented ideas that genuinely solve clients’ real challenges.

The future belongs to visionaries and in the ideas economy the biggest thinkers will win. Shouldn’t that be you?

Originally published on British American Business

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The future of retail dropped in New York this weekend in the imposing shape of Hudson Yards. Presided over by Thomas Heatherwick’s stunning “Vessel”, the worlds of architecture and marketing collide in this instagram-breaking rebirth of the shopping experience.

The $25 billion development boasts one million square feet of retail, food and culture built for social shared experience in person and online, with every square metre constructed as a photo opportunity.

A prime example of marketecture in action, the development harnesses the power of Heatherwick Studio’s escheresque climbable sculpture to take the opening of a new shopping centre to new levels of consumer and media engagement.

Two decades on from the start of my career, launching UK retail destination Bluewater’s “male creche” strategy for “parking” bored partners, the crowds were at capacity this weekend with a balanced gender demographic (I am assured the guys are here voluntarily) and even a few four-legged friends.

Can kill become cure for the future of physical retail? While online shopping may have won the first round against bricks and mortar, the troubled retail sector has come back fighting with this immersive social media playground. Worlds collide in Hudson Yards with the Floor of Discovery hosting purpose-built showcase stores for born-online brands who are finding online customer acquisition increasingly expensive. Could more agile and enlightened lease arrangements be the key to unlock a brighter future for retail real estate and the high street?

Fellow British export Heatherwick’s example of British American collaboration provided an inspiring start to Man Bites Dog’s week of meetings and keynote speeches in New York.

We saw a lot of fun and a lot of social engagement but not a lot of shopping bags. While the jury’s out – we’re in.  

Man Bites Dog is an award-winning thought leadership consultancy with global reach. Find out more at www.manbitesdog.com

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Man Bites Dog Blog by Fiona Buckley - 4M ago

You can’t go a day without seeing a story about data. Whether it’s a company misusing data, legislation about data, or how much your personal data is worth, these little chunks of information are big news and big business.

You’ve also probably heard that ‘data is the new oil’, and there’s certainly a lot of money to be made from it. But there’s more to it than that. Like oil, when it’s processed properly data can produce a whole range of innovative new products.

But when it comes to improving business performance, data tends to be used in pretty traditional ways. Most new products use data to offer more efficient or comprehensive ways of analysing something easily quantifiable like financial performance, workplace productivity or industry growth.

Better ways of measuring these things are important, but companies have already been recording them for decades – or even centuries. What if it was possible to measure something completely different?

What’s most exciting right now is using data to understand the human aspects of a company. Businesses are getting more switched on to how important culture is to a company’s success, and there is growing evidence that good culture increases profits, but because it’s so difficult to benchmark company and market wide, it’s often neglected.

Big players in the tech industry led the way on prioritizing amazing company culture, and Google’s free meals, flexible working and on-site massages certainly don’t seem to have done their profits any harm. This has definitely put culture on the agenda for businesses big and small, but executives often need to know the exact impact something has on the bottom line to invest in it.

One of our new clients at Man Bites Dog is using data to crack the culture conundrum. Although some other companies are trying to figure what makes a good or bad culture, Temporall are really one to watch – they’re using machine learning to actually work out the value of different organisational cultures.

Why will people care? Because we’ve never been able to measure the abstract parts of organisations before, culture often gets a reputation for being “fluffy” and is often put in the HR category of something that needs to be improved companywide. But this isn’t a nice-to-have. On top of affecting overall profits, culture is important for attracting and retaining employees, developing new products and services and with top talent in short supply this could become a crucial factor in winning the best staff.

This could be the start of a new data revolution, and Temporall are a key player in measuring things that matter to employees and boards. Companies could be ranked by culture, transforming what they are judged on and why they succeed. I’ve no doubt that over time it will be become a recognised KPI for management. Ethics would become competitive and the labour market will evolve accordingly. If data is the new oil, this could be the invention of plastic – but without clogging up the seas. I say we embrace the culture shock.

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The smart connected home is almost a reality, as I discovered on a recent visit to Unruly’s connected home experience. From augmented reality shopping options for home furnishings at the touch of a button, voice activated shopbots giving food and wine pairings, cocktail recipes, to state of the art heart, health, and sleep monitors, air quality assessments, and everything in between, there’s no denying the extraordinary capabilities of our future homes.

Whether you think gadgets or robots catering to your every need would be delightful or lead to dystopia (I’m a Black Mirror fan!), they are set to revolutionise how we live, shop and even think. At the Unruly experience we talked a lot about how tech advancement will affect the way people shop, cook, sleep and relax in their homes. But that’s not all it’s going to change. How will it influence what we buy, which products we discover and why we stay loyal to brands? And what space will this leave for B2B marketers?

The brand bypass bogeyman

In B2B, we need to start planning what our role will be in this smart connected world. One crucial consideration will be how to avoid brand bypass. As consumers choose more and more of their purchases via intelligent systems, this could drastically change – and limit – the products and experiences they are exposed to.

Think about shouting at your Alexa tucked away in the corner of your kitchen whenever you need more milk, a new hair dryer, or a bottle of wine. Gradually, it will change its suggestions based on your previous purchases, perhaps suggesting the same electronics brand as your hair straighteners, or a selection of bottles made from your favourite grape.

This can create an echo-chamber where consumers stick to the same products because they aren’t exposed to others. But it’s not just consumer choice that could dictate this – business partnerships will influence results listings, nudging customers towards their own hard-won commercial partners.

Your personal cyber-shopper

Customers often don’t know which brand they want, or even which are available. But if they don’t specify when buying through smart devices, an algorithm will pick instead. Not having to decide which particular item to buy will sometimes be good for the consumer, and sometimes won’t be – they might end up paying a premium or missing the product that best fits their needs.

But it definitely won’t be good for individual companies trying to grow their market share in a crowded marketplace. Popular or promoted brands will scoop up extra sales, while newcomers could struggle to even get noticed, let alone added to your basket. B2C businesses will need smart strategies from B2B marketers to survive.

If the home is only a few years away from the ultimate new shopping mall, as B2B marketers how can we make sure our clients’ products are at the front of the shelves?

Striking high-profile partnerships and deals will be crucial to push your client’s products up the search results, and so will marketing outside the home, which will need to be effective enough to cement brand identity into the search, then buying, decision.

The B2B Smart Home Opportunity

It’s not just B2C facing these new challenges in making their products stand out – the B2B community are far from immune. Key purchasers are acting more and more like consumers when buying business-related services, and they want their experience with your brand to be as slick and sophisticated as the products they buy in their personal life.

What’s more, as working from home becomes more and more common and the technology often more advanced at home than at work, the experience of buying business and personal products will converge.

The key to making sure you stand head and shoulders above the crowd is taking ownership of an issue that differentiates you. Wrap your brand around the issue or problem you solve and build an ecosystem of partnerships and communities which makes sure your brand stays visible and clearly defined.

For B2B companies who can adapt, the smart home provides an incredible opportunity to promote their services and snap up new business. After all, it won’t be too long before your clients are buying your products by talking to their hallway mirror…

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Welcome to Man Bites Dog’s monthly trade blog. Our international trade thought leadership team helps organisations capture their share of the global trade opportunity. Working with clients in sectors from professional and financial services to technology and logistics, we develop visionary thought leadership, world-leading new data sets and digital client engagement tools to help position clients’ expertise and generate demand for their services. Our regular articles will provide perspectives on a key issue in global trade.

At the time of writing, waves of violence and detentions have flared in Harare after the country’s first post-Mugabe elections, with the Movement for Democratic Change’s (MDC) Nelson Chamisa and the interim ZANU-PF President Emmerson Mnangagwa vying for leadership of the southern African country once famed as ‘The breadbasket of Africa’. Mnangagwa was victorious but only narrowly avoided a run-off with Chamisa, amidst claims of vote rigging from the MDC. It appears that substantial political tensions will remain, but will the election process prove enough for Zimbabwe to continue its journey back to the world of international trade and investment?

Since the end of the Mugabe-era last year, the interim Mnangagwa Government was working to rebuild Zimbabwe’s status in international trade and investment, particularly with regard to the once-famed agricultural sector, welcoming a number of international trade delegations. Before 2000, agricultural exports were responsible for as much as 15% of GDP and and 33% of export earnings; 70% of Zimbabweans’ earnings are dependent on the sector (World Bank). The Government has been proactively supporting the sector through the Command Agriculture and Command Livestock programmes, both largely funded with private sector partners. Command Agriculture, in essence an import substitution programme, has been controversial particularly with regards to timely repayments by beneficiaries.

Whilst individual programmes may prove problematic, it is at least encouraging that the Government, over the latter years of Mugabe-rule and the interim Mnangagwa presidency has proactively sought to support the development of sustainable agricultural industries after the crises of the 2000s. A recovering agriculture sector combined with a more welcoming business environment will be a vital in bringing Zimbabwean exports back to consumers and for attracting the international investment the market needs.

Zimbabwe is not just endowed with an environment that would support a vibrant agricultural sector but it is also rich in natural resources. The Chamber of Mines of Zimbabwe has predicted that in 2018 the mining sector will grow by 10% with the sector expected to be worth £30bn by 2030. In March the Government signed a $4.2 billion deal for a new platinum mine and refinery, a substantial boon for the administration.

As would be expected, particularly since the departure of Mugabe, much has been made of Zimbabwe’s potential in the press; throughout Mnangagwa’s interim presidency he declared the country ‘open for business’. However, the country needs to continue reforming to attract greater international investment and improve its situation with its international creditors. Positively, the complex indigenisation law, which proved such a barrier for international companies, was amended earlier this year with only the diamond and platinum sectors now requiring 51% local ownership. Even within these sectors there is some discretionary flexibility permitted. Whilst some sectors are officially reserved for local businesses the amendment also permits exemptions under special circumstances. The racial overtones of the original law have also been removed. This marks a substantial change in the law, which will operate in a vastly different way to the protectionist focus of the original.

Over recent months, it would seem that Zimbabwe has finally grasped the nettle and put economic development and engagement with the international community at the heart of policy making. However, the recent elections appear to be testing Zimbabwe’s nascent democratic structures to their limit. Whatever the coming months bring, the new administration will have to work hard to maintain momentum to ensure that Zimbabwe is genuinely open for business.

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Man Bites Dog recently joined the Financial Services Forum, and have taken advantage of our membership by attending a series of fascinating events and seminars focusing on the biggest issues facing the financial marketing community.

A recurring theme that continues to challenge financial services companies is brand differentiation. Because so many firms are trying to differentiate purely on services, experience, people, or the global footprint of the business when there is significant overlap with competitors – to their customers most financial services businesses look and sound the same.

Our own research has shown that 90% of B2B marketers believe their company needs to differentiate from competitors based on their thinking and ideas, as senior business audiences are only willing to trade their time for genuinely new insight. They want original ideas that really grab them, not me-too thinking. So how do you practically do that?

To develop a differentiating marketing strategy, these three key steps will ensure you stand apart from the competition, giving you the competitive edge to attract your prospects and win in your category.

Why do you exist?

This sounds like an existential question, but it’s a problem facing every financial services firm. As companies have become entrenched in their markets and have become protectionist rather than forward looking, they have lost sight of why their business came to be.

Amongst the complexity of processes and systems that developed over time to create a matrix of activity, businesses can lose sight of how they became successful in the first place.

Your first job in finding differentiation is understand why your business exists. This is unique – as every business formed for different reasons, in different markets, by and for different people – and if it’s unique, it’s not something anyone else can copy.

You need to find the fundamental values of your business and what it does truly differently that differentiates it. Don’t kid yourself – be honest – because there’s no fooling your customers.

Ask your customers

At the heart of your business and what makes it successful are your customers. There are individual reasons, both rational and emotional your customers chose you over your competitors, and you can use this insight to power your purpose and marketing strategy to help prospects understand who you are and why you’re a great choice.

The best way of find out what has made you a success is to ask your customers what they really think of you, and for you to get under the skin of who they are really so you can understand how to reach out to customers and prospects more effectively.

You need to know what their problems are, rather than what you want their problems to be. And by talking to the heart of the issues they face you can truly create an idea they can get behind.

Create insight based on segments of your customers so you can identify solutions that are bespoke to each group, and talk to them separately rather than assuming they are one homogenous group.

Focus on the value

Once you’ve understood your reason for being, and cross referenced that with customer segments based on real insight, you’ll be in pole position to understand where your natural fit is in your market.

Too many companies fall into the trap of wanting everyone to be their customer, and target so broadly that it no longer qualifies as targeting. So prioritise your target audiences based on their needs and create campaigns for each of them.

This doesn’t have to be limiting. A good, strategically sound campaign can cross continents, diverse business types, and companies with starkly different objectives, and still communicate real value in seemingly disparate groups.

There are fundamentals which tie all of your customers together, and by tailoring your messaging to different markets you will create true relevance for your target market from a single idea, focussing your marketing in a commercially effective way.

To find out more about how we generate award-winning ideas that sell, contact us today at hello@manbitesdog.com.

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A UK Government Minister has publicly criticised corporates that are threatening to pull out of Britain over Brexit, branding last week’s comments by Airbus “completely inappropriate.” In an unprecedented move, the public was urged to stop our ears and ignore the “siren voices” of multinational employers making public interventions in politics.

But are these siren voices an inappropriate distraction, or are business leaders sounding a valuable note of warning, a lighthouse steering us clear of the rocks?

The separation of business and politics has long been considered sacrosanct. While companies lobby to influence specific industry and legislative issues, at a macro policy level they generally aspire to be nonpartisan.

Political bias can alienate employees and customers alike, and in extreme cases it can affect the favourability of the regulatory environment and a company’s license to operate. What’s more, in our digital times an outspoken opinion can set an expectation that lasts a lifetime.

Against this context of political neutrality, we’ve seen the rise and rise of corporate values. These principles have become as entrenched as a corporate religion, a code which governs behaviour, culture and the norms by which companies operate.

Values generate followers, conveying competitive advantage in attracting customers and talent, with employees accepting lower salaries or fewer tangible benefits for an employer brand they identify with. But organisations that profit from their values will pay a high price if they fall short of their promises.

It’s no surprise that corporates have remained conspicuously nonpartisan for years, but when political ideologies are becoming increasingly polarised, the question is whether it’s possible (or even desirable) for companies to remain apolitical?

As political agendas move from shades of grey to harsh clashing colours, we are witnessing a shift towards ‘uncorporate communications’ where leaders are willing to speak out as representatives of their company to protect their brand’s core values and influence issues which have a direct impact on their business and their responsibilities to their employees and supply chain.

The gravity of Brexit may have been the first political issue to coax British business leaders off the fence in decades – and may set a new blueprint for corporate values and behaviour.

We’ve seen the rise of the digital resistance in the US as Tech CEOs have united to oppose immigration policy from the ‘travel ban’ to the separation of families at the Mexican border. Multinational companies have moved to defend not just the free movement of labour they need to operate, but the liberal democratic values their employees align with. This is a significant movement with global implications: business sirens are highlighting not only the issues that affect them directly, but taking a stance to make political change in the world.

We are now entering uncharted territory. In this polarised political environment, remaining in the neutral zone is almost impossible for companies that trade on their values as an intrinsic part of their operating model.

Leaders need to decide where their company stands on the most critical political issues, and identify the lines that cannot be crossed. The days of corporate neutrality may be numbered.

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I recently attended the techXLR8 event as part of London Tech Week, the biggest showcase by leading tech companies of technology and innovation in Europe. I was encouraged to see, that despite the economic Brexit angst, the tech scene is going from strength to strength in the UK, which is why it forms a crucial part of the future industrial economy.

Last year, UK venture capital investment exceeded Germany, France and Sweden combined. We have the third highest global investment in tech after the US and China, with £2.3bn being injected into the sector recently.

Confidence from corporates remains strong too, as Salesforce announced it would invest £1.9bn in the UK over the next five years, proving that that they believe in the thriving diverse talent we have to offer. And a few weeks ago London was once again ranked as the leading tech hub in Europe.

So it’s all good right, the market is buoyant. But what stood out for me?

Augmented Reality – Why now?

AR is talked about a lot, it feels like the shiny new toy, but it’s still misunderstood in terms of the value it can bring to companies in the future, especially in the B2B space. 

When listening to Blippar it became clear that AR cannot be considered as an extension of digital – it’s an entirely different medium and should be treated as such.

When applied intelligently, it has the power to transform the user experience in pretty much every market, from industrial manufacturing to retail and healthcare. Imagine the new and exciting partnerships you can foster as part of your AR strategy when looking to sell your service as part of the customer experience? AR could be described as the perfect storytelling tool but it will demand a new way of thinking.

In terms of B2B, marketers need to consider how and when this becomes part of the customer experience. Ultimately you’ll need to rethink how you launch the new product or service and how best to captivate your customer perhaps using geo-location-based services and new viewing experiences at conferences or events. The key message here, is to learn as much as you can about what the tech can offer, experiment and think ahead.

Transportation of the Future – Hyperloop

I’m always interested in the future of transportation as I work with global logistics company Agility. I listened to an impressive presentation from Virgin Hyperloop One and wished we could fast forward 20 years so the commute so cities become metro stops instead of far away destinations.

Hyperloops hold significant potential to become the first new mode of public transport in over 100 years, promising significantly shortened intercity travel times, lower costs, potentially transforming regions and decreased negative environmental impacts.

An example is a standard commute from London to Manchester which may take 2H 2M on a train and by road 4 hours. With Hyperloop it will take 26 minutes. It’s a similar story in Los Angeles, where Elon Musk’s perfectly named Boring Company is looking to create the infrastructure to ferry commuters between downtown L.A and LAX in just 10 minutes, down from one and a half hours during rush hour, and all for just $1.

However, what is the reality for business and the logistics industry?  The common belief is that moving containers and cargo – not people is where the first round of disruption will happen. I, for one will be looking forward to seeing how it pans out.

To learn more about our logistics expertise and how we can take your services to market, getting you heard by the companies that matter to you, contact us at hello@manbitesdog.com.

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Gender equality is having a moment. One hundred years after women were granted the vote, we have finally seen the statue of a woman, suffragist Millicent Fawcett, join the 11 men in Parliament Square. We have heard women speak out against sexual harassment with the #MeToo movement and we have tried to measure our inequality of worth and opportunity by reporting the Gender Pay Gap.

But this is not equality. One statue is not enough. There is a much bigger issue at play – which is the absence of women’s ideas and voices in society. It’s time we talked about The Gender SAY Gap.

The absence of female voices, ideas and insights is the elephant in every room: from the newsroom, where we write and feature in just a fraction of the news; to our underrepresentation in the boardroom and the editing room, where even Hollywood’s leading ladies lack parity of dialogue. What are we teaching our children about women’s right to speak?

Society has failed to acknowledge a quiet revolution. For the last decade women have outnumbered men in high status professions. We are disproportionately the experts in the room, so why aren’t we hearing from female authorities?

Humanity is facing existential challenges, from mitigating climate change and geopolitical conflict, to how we ensure AI delivers a brighter future, not a more unequal one. These are big questions that deserve big answers – which means we need to hear from a diversity of voices.

Bridging The Gender SAY Gap is not a luxury. Women’s invisibility and silence comes at great cost in terms of our own wasted potential and because we are depriving society of our valuable ideas – and the ideas of the next generation who can’t aspire to be what they can’t see and hear from us. And the consequence is that women are missing from public life. Eight out of ten British students can’t name a famous woman working in technology. Is that because we don’t exist, or because of The Gender SAY Gap?

The absence of women as thinkers and even more so, as speakers, for their organisations has to be called out and addressed. I know most of us aren’t glory seekers. We expect our work to speak for itself, but trust me – it won’t. There is great power in being associated with your own signature idea. To have a drum that’s yours and keep on beating it, that’s how we create change. If you believe in your idea, you are its best champion. Because sharing your ideas – making them travel – is as important than having the ideas in the first place.

We have a tremendous opportunity today to make a change in women’s visibility as thought leaders and speakers for their organisations. The supply of brilliant women is there: we are the experts in the room. The demand from companies, Government and media is there: organisations want your ideas and would be justifiably proud to have you represent them. Us elephants in the room are getting harder to ignore and if we want to make this year a milestone for gender equality not a just a moment, we need a surge of female voices to redress the balance.

The statue of Millicent Fawcett in Parliament Square holds a placard which reads: “Courage calls to courage everywhere” – the quote continues invisibly: “and its voice cannot be denied.” The world needs a diversity of ideas. I urge you to be seen and heard: stand up and have your say. And together, we can close The Gender SAY Gap.

The world needs a diversity of ideas – which means women and all diverse groups need to stand up and speak out. If you would like to find out more, benchmark your organisation’s Gender SAY Gap or take action to increase the diversity of your thought leaders and speakers, we’d love to hear from you. Be part of the movement: contact us at hello@manbitesdog.com, or watch the full speech at the House of Commons.

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Business transformation has hit a rapid pace. Whether it’s through innovation, acquisition, or diversification, organisations are facing exponential pressure to expand and evolve as globalisation and technology fuel increasingly competitive marketplaces.

In an era where companies are built to change, not necessarily to last, many businesses have only two options; evolve or face extinction. But the challenges of fast-paced business transformation can be significant.

As organisations expand their offerings, enter new markets or merge corporate cultures post acquisition or merger, the risk of fragmentation is acute. Companies can become disconnected from their purpose for being and the reasons their customers chose them in the first place, alienating stakeholders both inside and out. And as CMOs are increasingly expected to play a strategic role in bringing their organisation together, this presents new demands on the marketing function. But in a constantly changing environment, business objectives and focus, ensuring marketing efforts remain united can become an endless battle.

Whether you’re faced with balancing the demands of siloed business units; developing campaigns that resonate in multiple markets or creating PR programs that get universal buy-in, it’s easy to become pulled in multiple directions. Coupled with the fact that the marketing industry is exploding with tactics, channels and marketing platforms, there is a strong temptation for marketers to divide and conquer.

While Martech has an important role to play in the modern marketing mix, falling in awe of digital innovations can be a perilous distraction from the bigger picture. Developing a multitude of siloed mini-marketing strategies will drain your budget and divide your time, ultimately failing to deliver the company-wide impact that’s expected of a marketing department.

In an era where organisations face increased competition, wavering customer loyalty and lower levels of employee engagement, reducing fragmentation has never been more vital. Marketers need to renew their story to improve coherency, enhance clarity and engage customers, employees and investors to support the organisation’s next phase of evolution.

So when you need to deliver on all fronts, how do you ensure that you can develop a campaign that delivers? The answer: a single unifying campaign, delivered through a compelling story, that unites an organisation with it’s customers.

At Man Bites Dog, we specialise in bringing the many pieces of modern marketing and business strategy together, with campaigns that give whole organisations direction and focus. Call us today and tell us about your business challenges.

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