Last year, the entire marketing, PR and and Internal Communications teams were encouraged to undertake an SDI assessment. This form of 'strength deployment inventory' is one of the many popular methods of understanding both yourself and your team. There are many different iterations (including Myers-Briggs) of these types of psychological tests. The common opinion of these is that a team with a good mix of personalities is much stronger and more resilient. With the SDI the idea being that once we have determined what motivates and interests someone the easier it is to communicate with them. The reason for each individual's motivation are split into 3 types:

  • Red: Concern for performance
  • Blue: Concern for people
  • Green: Concern for process
By answering a series of questions we were then plotted on a graph depicting which of these makes up our motivation. Of course, it is possible to be a combination of all three (a Hub) meaning that we were equally motivated by them all. Our results also showed how we would act in conflict (i.e. become more concerned about the people).

For everyone there are no right or wrong answers. Just different ways of acting. As a digital marketer I was fascinated by what would be seen to motivate me. Everyone in the team expected me to be predominantly green (i.e. analytical) as I am always the one in meetings to bring the conversation back to meaningful measurement. So how did I do?

Well, my persona was graded as red/blue. This put me in the 'Assertive-Nurturing category'. Mentoring and encouraging others to do their best but focused on results. In conflict I was noted to become a 'hub'. This means that I can take on any type of behaviour depending on the situation - unpredictable!

It was a surprise to many that I was not motivated by the analytical nature of my role. To me though, my constant insistence on measurement and proof is motivated by that (red) part of me which needs to see solid results. It's not a behaviour I enjoy but I can do it in order to satisfy another part of my personality. This is the best way to ensure you are not cherry picking only the tasks you enjoy. If you find something more challenging then look at how it can contribute to your overall work satisfaction.

This leads on to another part of my work methodologies for which I'm often teased - saving money! It is definitely true that I am reluctant to spend company money compared to the abandon shown by some others. But this is why I think I have found my niche in digital marketing. For a long time now marketers say they’ve reduced their traditional advertising budget to fund digital marketing activities. The measurement and ability to test and learn makes it second to none. We no longer have to guess as to why a certain activity is not working.

Coupled with this is my regular insistence with agencies in making our resources scaleable. By this I mean building them in such a way so that we can continue to maintain them in house.

This process has been especially enlightening when looking at what motivates others. For example, if someone is a pure 'red' it's worth remembering to keep your emails short and get to the point in meetings! If they're 'blue' then you'll need to spend some time discussing their feelings and if they're green why they they been assigned a task.

Of course, it's never totally this clear cut and aspects like the ability to stay up to date with the latest technologies, be creative and pass on knowledge via presenting and mentoring are great forms of job satisfaction.

Some of the happiest, most successful people in the world were those who completed some kind of personality profile in their youth. Once you can understand your perceived weaknesses, not only can you make sure you point yourself in the right direction but you can also work on those weaknesses.

What's your digital marketing motivator?
The Green Room at the Century Club, London
In my role as the digital lead for the central marketing function I receive a lot of invitations to networking events. Many of these look particularly inviting in that they are hosted at stunning venues. These breakfast briefings boast views from locations such as the Shard, London Bridge or a fancy hotel. Inevitably though the format is always much the same. The benefactors are a series of agencies who use these forums to hawk their services and pick up new clients.

For some, this is a great opportunity to meet potential creative agencies and interview them before starting out on a project. Whereas I find this a rather false environment in which to do business. As outlined in my previous post there are lots of better ways to find a good agency. The only benefit of attending these briefings for me would be to have boasting rights with my children that I'd visited another cool building!

Let the presentation begin!
At the end of last year I was invited to deliver the keynote at the first UK B2B Marketing Masterclass event. I'd never attended one of these before and the agenda looked great given few specific B2B marketing events exist. After planning my presentation (keeping it to 15mins was the biggest challenge) we arrived at the Century Club, Shaftsbury Avenue for a 1.30pm start. I'm sure there was some clever behind the scenes work done on the seating plans as I was next to both competitors and clients!

The initial presentations were by a series of agencies but they must have been briefed on not delivering sales pitches. There was some interesting insight delivered and how you analyse your data was a big theme. The key message was that smart data collection and analysis is not happening universally. By being clear on your sources and when to stop collecting data you can have actionable outcomes to constantly improve your offer.

A series of roundtable discussions then took place which were by far the most useful bit for me. Having the opportunity to meet and discuss various challenges and ideas with peers is vital to anyone's professional development.

I was pleased to see that everyone stuck around to listen to my keynote. I framed my final points around my lessons learned for my ancestor John Fryer to make them more interesting and memorable:
I always enjoy presenting and there were some great questions at the end. The organisers even congratulated me on this as apparently no-one ever asks questions! I guess the post-5pm finish time means people usually run for their train. My favourite question was around why I was beaming out a link to our corporate film to Android phones. This was because I'd forgotten I had a working test beacon in my bag for our upcoming campaign! At least I know it works...

As a result of this afternoon out I've taken away lots of great insight and have made some useful contacts in the B2B sector. My LinkedIn connections are going from strength to strength!

My next speaking event will be in September in Manchester at the Digital Engagement Conference. I'm particularly looking forward to this one as by then our top secret new campaign will be in full flow. More of that to come very soon...!
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