GETTING UNDER THE SKIN OF A COMPANY – IT’S MORE THAN BISCUITS IN A BOARDROOM

I joined Weston at the start of June 2016 and as their newest and youngest team member, I had (and still have) a lot to learn. Eager and fresh from the bubble of university life I wanted to be challenged and really get involved in my new job. Rather fantastically we won a new client shortly after I arrived, they are called Fixmart and they supply materials for electrical, mechanical and HVAC sectors. It was a brilliant opportunity for me to learn how to engage with a new client and fundamentally really get under their skin.

As part of this process I was invited along to the messaging session (I was also asked to lead a section of it, well I did ask to be challenged). The session involved myself, our company Director and around ten of the company’s employees, including the CEO, sitting around a large table, drinking coffee and eating biscuits whilst hashing out the key fundamentals of the company. I soon learnt the biscuits were a necessary requirement for what would be an intense yet extremely useful meeting. A week later I was asked to review the session and pick out what I thought were the crucial elements of the session.

1 – Employees are important: Employees know their company better than anyone else. The variety of team members taking part in the session ensured a range of views. The team were included from the start providing us with the details that shaped the session; this included their competitors, their customers and their USP’s. We were there as a guide encouraging discussion in order for us to establish their marketing position as a team.

2 – You are not alone: No industry is in it’s own unique bubble; therefore by looking at your competitors, you can see what differentiates you from others. It was the part of the session that I was taking the lead in, and without wanting to blow my own trumpet, there was a lot of discussion in this section. I’d like to think it went so well because I was leading it, but I feel it went well because the company was given a chance to study their competitors and directly compare their business to others.

3 – The Proof Is In The Pudding: Until someone points it out to you, it is hard to see what makes something everyday, special. The session helped the employees identify the unique parts to their business and frame it to be communicated as a marketing message. Fixmart were able to find at least four really key selling points that they took for granted and weren’t telling customers about. By doing this, not only did we find out a lot more about the company, it also meant the company were looking retrospectively at themselves and questioning whether they were providing the best service for their customers.

I found the session extremely insightful. It was the first time I had been involved in this type of meeting and I was able to play a role in positioning the company. We were able to really get to know the client and create strong cohesive messages that would benefit them (and eat some very lovely biscuits).

 

Justine Hardingscreen-shot-2017-02-22-at-15-52-29

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