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When you decide to hire an outside marketing agency – either because you want to outsource your marketing entirely or supplement your existing in-house team – you’ll have a lot of decisions to make.
And one of the biggest will be whether to hire a generalist or specialist agency.
Let’s start by defining our terms: a generalist marketing agency is one that handles all kinds of marketing. These may include (but not be limited to):
Content creation and strategy
Social media management
A specialist agency, in contrast, will focus on only one of those channels. So they will do only SEO or only email marketing, for example.
So which should you choose?
There’s no wrong or right answer.
But as you might have guessed, each choice has its pros and cons.
Perhaps this is why some businesses end up switching from one to the other and then back again. They’re never entirely happy because they’re never entirely clear on what they need.
For example, we just lost a client because they wanted to transition to a generalist agency. Ironically, we actually took on this client five years ago because they wanted to transition from a generalist to a specialist agency!
By taking a closer look at the pros and cons – and by answering a few questions – you can hopefully make a decision that you can stick with for the longer term.
Let’s walk through some of them.Q1: Do You Need All Marketing Channels Offered? Or Only One or Two Predominantly?
Does your organization need all of the marketing channels listed above? Probably not. Affiliate marketing isn’t a great fit for B2B companies, for example.
If they decide to put more emphasis on a different marketing channel in the future, then they might want to hire a second agency that specializes in that area.
You might assume that with a big agency your account team will be made up of specialists who are experts in your preferred marketing channels.
Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case.
This point came home to us recently when we were interviewing to fill a position on my team.
The candidate was working for a generalist agency. We asked her specific questions about PPC management (an area she supported) and her answers revealed a lack of deep understanding.
Concerned, we asked if she had a Google Ads expert on her team she could go to if she had questions. She did not. Instead, she would have to call the Google helpline for assistance.
Given our recent poor experiences with the Google helpline, this was also not encouraging.
What’s more, she noted that her agency had moved into digital about five years ago and was working to get caught up. Gulp!
Thankfully, this isn’t always the case. Some generalist agencies are good about hiring and assigning real channel experts to account teams.
Even so, we still get a fair number of clients coming to us from generalist agencies with complaints about a lack of knowledge in the marketing channels they needed the most.
So when you’re considering hiring a generalist agency, ask questions to find out who will be on your account team.
What is their background and experience in your preferred marketing channels?
How much turnover can you expect?
And if they say the Google helpline, run!Q2: How Big Is Your Budget?
Say you’re a small manufacturing company, and you create a specific product for a specific type of audience.
Your total monthly marketing budget is $1,000 per month, which leaves a small monthly budget of about $300 for your Google Ads program.
It’s unlikely that a specialist PPC agency will be willing to take on that account. It’s simply too small.
However, you might find a generalist agency (or marketing person) that will be willing to manage it for you.Q3: Are You New to the Game?
If you’re a startup, it’s often best to hire a generalist first.
You want someone who’s solid, trustworthy, and can figure out just about anything.
Then, as you grow, you can start hiring specialists, either in-house or as agencies.
The original generalist will continue to run the department as you grow. And they’ll do it well because everything will have already passed through their hands.Q4: Do You Prioritize Performance or Convenience?
In some cases, convenience is the number one consideration.
You don’t have time to meet with your SEO consultant, then your social media consultant and then your content marketer. If that’s the case, then a generalist is the way to go.
However, in many cases, performance is the priority. And is well worth the time it takes to manage multiple specialists.Q5: Do You Already Have an in House Team, but You’re Lacking in One Area?
Maybe you already have a solid in-house team, but you can’t seem to nail down the right specialist in one particular area.
I get it! Sometimes, it’s really hard to find the perfect fit.
In those cases, an option is to keep your in house team but then bring in a specialist agency to manage that one marketing stream for you.
We have done this for companies before. Sometimes it’s for a short term (while they’re trying to hire the right in house person) and sometimes it’s for a longer term (they give up on hiring the right person and keep us on).Whatever You Do, Ask Questions
As you can see, the decision as to whether to go with a generalist or specialist will depend on your situation.
But regardless of the decision you make, don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions. Who will be working on your account? What are their specialties? Who can they go to for support?
And if you’re not happy with the answers, keep on looking.
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Webmail vs desktop email client: which should you choose?
With the rapid development of the internet in the early 2000’s, emails changed forever. In the early days, the only way to read and send email was to use a dedicated email client but as the Internet became more widespread , users moved from dedicated email clients to webmail.
Despite the number of users moving to webmail services, many users still prefer using a dedicated email client on their PC. If you can’t choose between a dedicated email client and webmail, we’re going to compare the two and help you determine the best solution for you.Webmail or desktop email client – which one to choose?
Email clients were a key component of every operating system since the creation of email services. Outlook Express was a default email application on older versions of Windows, therefore gaining extreme popularity with Windows users. Although Microsoft removed Outlook Express from Windows, many alternatives appeared soon after.
READ MORE: Top 5 Windows 10 TV box units to connect your Smart TV
[irp posts=”26354″ name=”Best Windows 10 Email Clients and Apps to Use”]Webmail services usually don’t support custom domains for free
Webmail lacks support for custom domains. If you own your own company and use a custom domain, you won’t be able to use that domain with most webmail services unless you choose to upgrade to premium. Some webmail services such as Outlook don’t have support for custom domains at all, so you might want to think twice before choosing webmail over a desktop email client.You can’t manage multiple email accounts from webmail
Desktop email clients are also a better choice if you use two or more email address. If you use both Gmail and Outlook, for example, you’ll have to log in to each of the two services in order to check your email. This isn’t a problem for most regular users but if you rely heavily on email for communication, checking two or more webmail services several times a day and responding to emails might become a tedious process.You can’t access webmail without internet connection
READ MORE: Top Windows 10 Optimizer Software for a snappier PCWebmail comes with limited storage space
Many webmail services come with limited storage space. If you regularly send and receive attachments, you might run out of webmail storage sooner than you think. After you run out of space, you won’t be able to receive new emails until you delete some older messages or until you purchase a premium option that gives you more space.
The only limitation of doing this is your hard drive size. But on the flip side, with enough room you’ll never have to delete any email messages or attachments or worry about the remaining space for your emails. Some desktop email clients, such as OE Classic, use public domain SQLite/MBX database to store your emails, which means that you can easily export your emails and save them on a different computer for backup.Desktop email clients require initial setup
Desktop email clients are great, offering more freedom to the user with less restrictions. They might require a little more setup, though, before you start receiving your emails. With webmail services, you only have to navigate to a specific website and all your emails will be there. Although desktop clients don’t require you to visit any website or to start your browser in order to check your email, they do require some initial configuration.
Before you can start reading your emails, you have to create your account, a process usually consisting of adding your email address and your password along with the address of the mail server. This process might seem a bit daunting to some users, which is why they choose webmail services instead. With webmail services, there’s no need to enter a web server’s address: everything you need is automatically configured with only an email and password needed to be created.Webmail services are synced across all of your devices Webmail services don’t require third-party applications
Webmail services can also be useful if you aren’t allowed to install any third-party applications on the computer that you’re currently using. For example, if your company’s policy forbids installing third-party applications, webmail might be a better solution for you in this case.
What is the better option: webmail or email client? It all depends on your needs. If you can’t install third-party applications and you want your emails synced across all devices, then webmail is a better choice for you. In addition, webmail offers more simplicity and that’s something many users prefer.
Some email clients like OE Classic feature a simple design resembling Outlook Express, something many users are looking for. Many email clients work exceptionally well with webmail services, so if you can’t decide between a webmail and desktop email client, you can easily combine the two and have the best of both worlds.
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WordPress is the most used free and open-source content management systems (CMS) in the world. WordPress powers more than 40% of all sites available on the web. This is quite natural because creating and maintain a website is quite easy with WordPress. There is no need for website owners to learn HTML or programming and the platform has a user-friendly interface.
One of the most important elements of WordPress CMS is the WordPress theme. This is the element of the WordPress website that provides all of the front end stylings. They include a folder of template data which takes care of specific parts of the website. These themes are multi-purpose by nature allowing users to use them on different type of sites. Downloading and installing these WordPress themes is very easy and fast. Today, there are hundreds of WordPress themes available for website owners and some of them are free while you have to pay for others.
In the recent period, many people are wondering whether they should opt for paid or free WordPress themes. If you are in a situation like this, it is the best idea to learn more about the difference between these two types of themes.Free WordPress Theme: An Overview
There are literally thousands of free WordPress themes available in the market. In fact, most websites use or start with free themes. One of the main reasons why they are so popular is the fact that they are free – you don’t have to pay a dime for them. This also means that you should feel free to try different themes until you find the one that suits your site the best.
Next, when we compare free WordPress themes with the paid ones, we will notice that most of them are compatible with almost all plugins. This is not true for paid themes. When creators of Free WP themes make them they have functionality in mind and that’s why they are creating a product that will be useful to most users. Of course, finding a way to make them compatible with plugins is one way to achieve this goal. The plugins are very important, so you should keep this fact in mind when making your final decision.
Contrary to popular belief, free WP themes provide excellent customer support. The vast majority of developers will be glad to answer all your questions and help you in case you get stuck. In fact, many of the developers are creating both free and paid themes, so they definitely want to keep their reputation. If you are concerned about support, you should also remember that since there are more users of free WordPress themes, there are more people that have experience with any theme you choose. So, you can ask questions on forums, websites, discussion boards and you’ll probably get an answer fast.
The only downside is that they might not be so unique, but as we said before, there are thousands of free themes and their number is increasing so if you are worried about uniqueness – do some research. We are sure that you will find a theme that is not overused.Paid WordPress Theme: An Overview
Paid WP themes are obviously themes that you must purchase. Their typical price usually starts at $25, but they can cost a few hundred dollars too. This is a huge no-no for many website owners especially the ones that are just starting their online ventures.
They definitely have a unique design than most free themes, but it all depends on the theme you have selected. There is no doubt that there are some unique free themes too. When we say paid themes, this doesn’t mean that we are talking about limited products. In other words, hundreds of people can pay for the same theme and use it on their website.
Paid WordPress themes promise enhanced security. This is especially important for online shops where paid transactions are in play. Once again, this doesn’t make paid themes better than free themes, at least not in general. Namely, there are many free themes that are offering great security options too.Freemium Model Astra Theme
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They say a person’s home is their castle, but in Mojang’s Minecraft, you can build a castle to be your home. Whether you build it in the Nether or on a mountain, those thick walls are perfect for keeping out mobs.
Here are eight of the most impressive Minecraft builds for castles we’ve seen from YouTubers with equally impressive subscriber numbers.
Table of Contents
Some of the castles highlighted here are a little daunting, even if you follow the blueprints to the letter. So why not start off with a simple castle?
There are numerous simple castle designs on the web, but a great one to start with is Gorillo’s Easy Starter Castle for Survival. This castle has been designed so that you can actually build it in survival mode rather than creative mode. Gorillo has chosen materials that are relatively easy to get early in survival mode, so it’s not just a nice place to stay overnight, it’s a survival base that will keep those Creeper mobs out of your bed.
Image Credit: Gorillo
The castle has a short tower and walls that are three blocks high. There are only a few basic rooms, so really it’s more like a castle-style Minecraft house, but it looks way swankier than the basic huts most of us build early in Minecraft survival mode. Compared to that, this is the lap of luxury.2. Floating Castle (by Twin Saw)
Building a castle is cool, but you still need to build it on the same dirt that the peasants use to slap together their hovels. If you really want to look down on the plebians, why not build a castle that floats in the sky?
Now, this isn’t a build for the faint of heart. Twin Saw has broken their tutorial into multiple parts where you’ll first learn how to build the four floating spires (the same design repeated four times) and then the actual central castle. It’s a five-part step-by-step series, so you shouldn’t feel lost. However, we strongly suggest watching all five parts before you start building, since they do add some corrections in later videos that you’ll want to know about.
Image Credit: Twin Saw
In Part E of the tutorial, you can see that the interior of the castle is really just a large open space, but it should be easy to adapt it to whatever rooms you may need. This is mainly an exterior, aesthetic build, but you can always make a nice big throne room for yourself.
Most of the time when you use the word “castle” people immediately think of a European castle, or a fantasy castle derived from European castles. Of course, cultures all over the world built the functional equivalent of castles, and Japan is quite famous for these beautiful structures.
Unfortunately, unlike basic medieval castles, it’s not exactly obvious how to get a Japanese-style castle right. LionCheater has come up with a small, relatively easy design that captures the essence of what makes these castles so distinctive.
Image Credit: LionCheater
The interior isn’t much to write home about, especially since this is such a small example of this architecture. But if you can build this smaller version, it’s not a major leap to scale it up for your own larger designs.
We absolutely love this adorable little castle. It’s reminiscent of those super-simplified LEGO building models. So this little lo-fi castle build isn’t much more than a gussied-up house, but just look at it!
Image Credit: MythicalSausage
Also, this is an excellent project if you’re short on time and just want to make something cool. It’s small enough to be doable in survival if you want to challenge yourself. The list of materials is really modest by Minecraft castle standards. The whole thing fits in 17×25 blocks. You could even add a tiny moat and a cobblestone road to complete the illusion.
Minecraft may seem like a game that doesn’t limit what its players can do, but up until update 1.18, there was a significant limit on how high the mountaintops can be in a generated world. With this limit now increased, you can reach for the sky and look down the mountainside on whichever beautiful biome with the right size mountains you decide to use.
BigTonyMC’s layout is quite simple, with a main room, a tower, a storage room, and stairs to the next floor, which has the entrance to the tower. This is one of the best tutorials we’ve seen, and it’s pretty easy to follow. Best of all, if you follow it exactly, you’ll end up with a castle that’s beautifully textured and has a completely decorated interior.6. Hogwarts From Harry Potter (by Planet Dragonod)
Does the classic school slash castle from the ultra-famous wizard franchise need any introduction? If you don’t know what Hogwarts or Harry Potter is, then this castle might not be all that special to you. But even in isolation, this is just an incredible project.
Planet Dragonod really goes to great lengths to recreate the magical movie school with all its buildings. We especially like that it’s done in classic Minecraft style, without all of the newfangled Minecraft mods the kids like these days.
Image Credit: Planet Dragonod
Be warned, this is a huge project, and the tutorial spans several videos. You can tell just by looking at the foundation layout in the first video that this is going to be a long-term build. Still, it’s one of the best Minecraft castle ideas we’ve seen, and it’s executed so well.
The real beauty of it is that you can go crazy with texture packs and biome modifications to turn this barebone Hogwarts into whatever glossy vision you want to see. The castle design is as timeless as the movies.
Children of all ages (that includes your parents and your grandparents) can instantly recognize the silhouette of the Disney Castle. Well, we say “castle” but really it’s more of a palace. That’s just nitpicking though, because this fantastical structure is a fantastic building idea, especially if you love tower castles.
There are quite a few different takes on making the Disney World castle in Minecraft. We’ve picked out Bubbaglubba’s excellent design. This castle looks like the real deal, but it cleverly works on creating the impression of a huge Disney castle, without being as big as it looks. Ironically, that’s exactly how a real-life Disney World castle is designed.
Image Credit: Bubbaflubba
This specific castle blueprint is based on Cinderella’s castle, which is probably the most iconic of the Disney castles. Minecraft players who want to attempt their own build should get ready for a wild Minecraft castle design that’s 60 blocks high and 44×41 blocks in size. This beautiful castle is a welcome break from digging out yet another medieval dungeon.
If you’re looking for something straight out of the tales of King Arthur, then this medieval-style castle by Stevler couldn’t be more perfect. It’s got everything the budding lord needs, with a main building, wizard tower, middle tower, small tower, and practical spaces like a stable for horses, barracks, and a warehouse to use as storage rooms.
Stevler used the BSL shaders pack to get this exact look, but of course you can use any pack you want or just stick with Minecraft’s default look. Don’t forget that you can also use ray tracing if you have the GPU for it.
Image Credit: Stevler
The materials list in this castle tutorial doesn’t have much in it that could be considered exotic. It’s mainly stone, stone bricks, spruce wood, and a few other small touches. Stevler gets a lot done with a rather narrow variety of materials.Can’t Get Enough of the Minecraft World?
Minecraft really seems like an infinite playground and there’s always something new to learn in the game. We’ve got a ton of great tutorials for you to expand your skills:
That’s just the tip of the iceberg. Simply search for “Minecraft” on the site, and you’ll find tutorials and awesome troubleshooting guides to help you make the most of the world’s favorite game.
One of the common queries I come across repeatedly on several forums is “Should I become a data scientist (or an analyst)?” The query takes various forms and factors, but here is a common real-life anecdote:
“I have been doing Sales for multiple BFSI giants for last 3 years, but I have stopped enjoying my role. After reading about Business Analytics and machine learning, my interest in this area has grown. Should I make a switch and learn data science? If so, How do I do this?
When I reflect back on how I took the decision, I realized – I happened to be lucky! The decision was relatively easier for me. Why? I knew the industries/roles, I would not enjoy – these included roles in Sales, roles in Physical engineering, and a few others. I was open to roles in data science in retail banks and investment banks and luckily ended up with Capital One.
Today, after spending ~8 years in the industry, it is far easier for me to guide and mentor people on whether Analytics is the right role for them or not. So, I thought, I’ll try and put my thoughts in a framework and share it with the audience of this blog. The aim of this post is to help those people who are sitting on the fence and thinking about which job/role is right for them. So, if you are someone deliberating a move in data science or are wondering whether you are a right fit with this industry, here is a neat framework that might help.
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I have put a framework in the form of a very simple test. This test is based on the attributes every analyst should possess. You should score yourself against each of the questions (out of the score mentioned after the question) and then add your scores. A good analyst should score more than 70 and anyone scoring below 50 should seriously re-consider a decision to be a data scientist.Test Questions:
Do you love number crunching and logical problem solving – i.e. puzzles, probabilities, and statistics? (score out of 20)
By love I don’t mean like, I don’t mean you don’t mind numbers – I mean, do you have an obsession with numbers! Do you love doing guess-estimates at any time of the day – I have done those estimates while I am taking a shower, while I am driving, while I am watching a movie, or even when I am swimming (and lost my count of laps)! I know my friend Tavish does these calculations in his mind too – while he is driving or while he is playing badminton. If you want me to space out of a discussion, just ask me a really hard logical problem!
5 – dread mathematics & statistics, but can face to some extent
10 – Comfortable with mathematics and statistics, but need calculators and excel to work on problems. Don’t mind attempting puzzles
15 – Love crunching numbers and solving logical puzzles anywhere
20 – Can’t live without number crunching and logical puzzles – an obsession!
Do you enjoy working/handling unstructured problems? (score out of 20)
An analyst will inevitably be tested against unstructured and amorphous business problems. And it is how you solve these unstructured problems, that decides how good or bad an analyst you are. My first project in my first role stated: “In last few months, we have seen a high increase in high-risk customers of type X. You need to come up with a data-based strategy to measure, control, and improve this situation.“
Even the business did not have a clear definition of these customers. Can you handle this kind of ambiguity and provide a direction on your own? Do you enjoy these situations or you would rather be comfortable in a more defined role?
5 – Have tried these problems in past – but not my cup of tea!
10 – A score of 10 would mean, you like solving these problems once in a while (say 3 – 6 months)
15+ – You prefer unstructured problems over-structured. You don’t enjoy someone else structuring problems for you.
Do you enjoy deep research and can spend hours slicing and dicing data? (score out of 20)
Going back to the first project I faced, it took me 3 months to understand the business, have multiple discussions with stakeholders, brings them on the same page, and then mine the data to bring out solutions. You need an outlook of a researcher to be a good business analyst. When was the last time you spent hours and hours immersed in solving a problem? Can you do that again and again?
5 – You want a change every few hours. You can’t work on a single problem for the entire day
10 – You can work on a research problem – but need some side work to help you out of boredom
15 – You feel the side work is distracting you from making progress on the key problem you are working on. Would be happy if they are taken away
20 – Can’t stand distractions
Do you enjoy building and presenting evidence-based stories? (score out of 20)
A data scientist needs to be a fluid presenter. What is the use of all the hard work, if he is not able to influence his stakeholders? Communicating with data and presenting stories backed by data is one of the most important elements in the life of a data scientist. Imagine being part of companies like Google and Amazon – you have all the data you need (probably more than that) for the domain you are working on, but you need to convert it into a meaningful story, present it to the stakeholders and influence them to take the right decision!
5 – You struggle to communicate my mathematical thoughts to the audience
10 – You can manage telling stories with a lot of practice. Can’t think of doing this on the fly!
15+ – Any time, anywhere!
Do you always find yourself questioning people’s assumptions and are always curious to know ‘Why”? (score out of 10)
This is probably the best part and the most fun part! Here is a quote a read somewhere on Linkedin: Arguing with an Engineer is a lot like wrestling in the mud with a pig: After a few hours, you realize the pig likes it. Similarly, asking why comes naturally to a good data scientist. Some of the best data scientists would stop anyone and ask for a rationale if they are not clear – Why did you ask this question? What was your thought process? Why do you assume so? are just a few examples of these questions!
5 – You only ask questions when they are critical to be asked
8+ – You can’t stand the anxiety of not understanding something! Jumping to ask questions!
Do you enjoy problem-solving and thrive on intellectual challenges? (score out of 10)
Analysts require a knack for problem-solving. Most of the problems businesses would face would be unique to them and it would take a smart solver to solve them. Solutions, which work for one organization may not work for another – you need to be someone who quickly develops a deep understanding of a problem and then come out with innovative ways to solve these problems
3 – You don’t mind thinking about solving problems – but you struggle.
6 – You can solve problems at times
9 / 10 – You just love the process of intellectual thinkingEnd Notes:
What is my score? I would score somewhere between 80 – 85 on this test. It is your turn now. Do take the test and let me know, how much do you score? Also, do let me know if you think the test was helpful or otherwise.
Did you like this framework? We at Analytics Vidhya follow an analytical approach to problem-solving. If you want to become a data scientist with this analytical mindset, check out the Certified AI & ML BlackBelt Plus Program which offers 100+ hours of live-course, 100+hours of self-paced video, 18+ real-life projects, and the most important – 1:1 mentorship. The course is carefully crafted by experts so that you can become an industry-ready professional!
Now that you know that you can / can not become a data scientist, you might be asking “How do I become a data scientist?”. Here’s the Roadmap –
4 strategies to help your agency expand abroad
As recently reported by The New York Times, the world market has finally escaped the throes of the economic crisis, as we now see every major economy enjoying simultaneous growth. While the reasons for this growth are manifold and far-reaching, one thing is clear: Businesses finding success at home in the United States are beginning to view the idea of opening offices abroad as a more viable opportunity.
It’s not hard to see why. There are 28 countries and 500 million consumers in the European Union alone. To say opportunity exists in Europe is an understatement.
But once you get to the EU, you need to have access to all those countries. Achieving this requires a carefully planned strategy.
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Access the Running international marketing campaigns guideShould your agency move abroad?
Agencies aren’t like other businesses. If you’re selling a product to consumers, you simply have to identify whether the product fits within an international market and then find a way to get it in front of that audience.
For an agency, however, moving abroad presents a variety of challenges. You’re suddenly speaking to a new demographic that may have different buying habits than domestic buyers. Laws are different, and so are cultures. Time zones are also different, which is one of the major reasons you might consider opening offices overseas.
In any case, first, consider whether you need to be in Europe at all. Does being on the ground help sales? Is there actually a tangible benefit to that?
You don’t necessarily have to be in London to do business in London. If you’re just trying to get clients residing in a particular region, you can do that from anywhere. To physically locate overseas, justify why it’s necessary to accomplish the goal.
Once you’ve decided that yes, going abroad is what you’ll do, practice the following strategies to help ensure a successful move:1. Dig into all EU rules and regulations
Once you’re established in Europe, you’re free to do business. But before you can get underway, understand that not only are regulations different there, but you also have to be familiar with them.
For example, you might encounter a wide range of rules that apply to filing annual tax returns and value-added taxes. Additionally, those rules may highlight whether you must provide annual audits and filings as well as quarterly filings with regional authorities.
So get educated. Tons of digital resources exist to help sharpen your understanding of rules and regulations in Europe. And obviously, feel free to start at the beginning with EU’s main website — its entire “doing business” section is a jackpot of information.
If you want to expand into the U.K., for example, check out the Internet Advertising Bureau’s site. This body of marketing councils brings together key stakeholders who coordinate and collaborate on the standards and best practices across disciplines and vertical markets.2. Consider shipping carefully
As an agency, shipping might not strike you as an immediate concern, but you’ll be working directly with brands for which shipping will be a core issue. You must be prepared to address these challenges.
Bottom line: The more distribution centers and other operation bases a brand has, the more complicated it becomes to ensure timely delivery while maintaining adequate inventory levels.
Study shipping and distribution options carefully. These days, a range of resources exist that can make these processes easier. Fulfillment by Amazon International, for example, can allow a brand to focus on running its company while allowing an outside entity to handle the heavy lifting.3. Take it easy
You don’t want to treat opening an office abroad like starting a new business at home, where all your employees and systems have to be in place immediately to hit the ground running.
For example, my company is currently working on European expansion plans. We want to sell the idea of bringing European brands to the States, but we can’t just set up shop overseas, start telling people we’ll bring them to America, and expect to see a return on the new office. It takes time to build a reputation for that.
Now that you have some of your people in the new region, establish who you are — especially your brand — and what you do. Then, find new clients. Take the time to learn the ecosystem as well as the nuances and differences of doing business in Europe versus in the United States.
Once you’ve become comfortable, begin the search for good marketers, start (gradually) recruiting a full team, and build out services. That said, pump the brakes on hiring an entire staff while you learn the new ropes.
Attend conventions. Reach out to potential business partners who align with your goals. Read up on competitors and players in your space — even try to meet them. You’d be surprised: Sometimes playing nice with competition can result in a valuable business relationship.4. Show off early and often
When it comes to attracting and retaining top talent, reputation is key. So show up and get noticed quickly.
Even before you’ve launched, host events in new markets that shares insights about your company culture with locals and potential talent. Take steps to build up the reputation of your leaders on the ground and establish their desirability. That way, when you finally open your doors, you’ll find the region’s best minds waiting for you.
Expanding overseas can present massive opportunities for growth, but these opportunities don’t come without challenges. By sticking to these strategies, you’ll be prepared in terms of knowledge, planning, reputation, and talent — all of which are essential for success overseas.
Think of it this way: Global domination is just a matter of laying the right groundwork. The market is ripe for it.
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