As a Marketing Director, it can feel like you are continually being pulled in twenty different directions. Randal Killip from Media Stable balances the mayhem by keeping his mind open and viewing every situation as a learning opportunity.
Managing the multiple items vying for Randal’s attention are his obligations to marketing the services of Media Stable to his two very different target audiences. On one hand he has to help discover, reach out and attract the bona fide experts in a number of different fields. And on the other hand he must market and present their stable of experts in a way that will get the interest of the media entities looking for contributors and content.
Learn how Randal narrows down and approaches the high quality leads and rises above all the noise to reach his target audience.
1. Randal, it looks like you have been with Media Stable for just under a year. Could you talk about the company and what your position with them entails?
At Media Stable we help people connect with the media. Our service provides the media with access to a database of high quality experts, vetted for both their expertise and ability to handle a media interview. In addition, we also provide an avenue for our experts to take their thoughts, stories and opinions directly to the media through our Media Board service,which is a win-win for both parties, as it provides our experts with a public voice, and the media with fabulous content.
Media Stable began as a Perth based business, and with the success of the service it quickly spread to the eastern seaboard. My role with Media Stable is to continue to grow the business in the eastern states, and to implement strategies that assists in identifying talent that would be suitable to join the Stable.
2. You worked for Cubit Media Research prior to your current role. What skills and knowledge that you gained from that previous position have helped you succeed in your current position at Media Stable?
Cubit was a terrific experience for me. It is a business that is at the leading edge of media analysis, with the business always looking to stay at the forefront of the industry. That position provided me with the opportunity to work with some of the largest corporations in the country.
The key learning from my time as Cubit was quality of product, and the need to remain a leader in what you do. Working with them, we had leading corporations who had been with the business for over a decade, and this was due to the senior management always maintaining incredibly high standards, and staying on the cutting edge of the media research industry.
These exact same qualities exist at the Media Stable, and I made the decision to move because I loved the unique product, and the desire of the Media Stable founder, Nicholas Hayes, to create something quite special.
3. You are the Marketing Director. Do you find yourself still getting involved in the day-to-day of your company’s specific marketing tactics or do you more just manage your team as they handle the specifics?
My role is very hands on, and I always have worked that way. I love the coalface, rolling my sleeves up and getting to it. I find it keeps me focused and on the pulse of what is working and what is not.
That said it is also important to be able to stand back, and look at the marketing from different angles, and throughout my career I have always been able to balance both.
4. Media Stable is in the unique position of marketing your client’s expertise to the media, so how you do you in turn use the media to market your company’s service to prospective clients?
We are a unique organisation, and I love that about our business. The media is an extremely powerful resource, providing an opportunity to communicate to a mass audience, and any business who has a story to tell should be looking to market through this important resource. This of course is no different for Media Stable, and our Managing Director, Nicholas Hayes, regularly commentates through the media, as an expert on issues pertaining to the media. Fortunately for us, Nic is a great talent, and we have had some terrific coverage since commencing the business.
5. Could you talk about your search engine strategy and how it fits in with your overall marketing campaign?
For most businesses, SEO is a critical element, and at Cubit we ensured that we remained at the top of the Google search. With the Media Stable, as our marketing is so specific and the talent we seek so unique, we do not use any mass marketing platforms.
SEO is not significant in what we do as an organization. We will knock on your door if you are an exceptional talent, rather than just waiting for anyone to knock on our door.
6. What area of marketing has generated the best results for your company (social media, direct mail, tv, email etc.) and why? Do you see this changing and if so, in what direction?
Not everyone has the ability to communicate through the media. We do not advertise at the Media Stable. All of the talented experts who have joined the Stable were either identified as leaders in their field or referred from our existing client base or partner organisations. Given this, mass marketing campaigns would not be suited to what we do, as we are seeking very specific talent.
To this end, when an expert has been identified as suitable, we look to reach out to them with an invitation to consider what we do, through a variety of measures. For me, I tend to find that using social media sources is the most effective way of making this initial contact.
In a broader sense, there has been a significant change in regards to communications with prospective clients, with the traditional methods of cold calling, or email blasting, becoming more and more ineffective.
My preference, if there is no possibility of creating a referral contact through mutual contacts, is to first reach out through social media sources to introduce the product. This provides a softer initial touch, so if you elect to call or email as follow up, the prospect at least has some idea as to the reason for the contact.
7. What are some of the key differences between your marketing campaigns directed toward getting traction with the media companies vs. reaching the experts you want to apply for your program?
We have two very different client bases, firstly the media who are interested in the quality of our experts, and their ability to provide content. And secondly, our experts, who are interested in using their skills, knowledge and expertise to promote what they do through the media. So we have two very different strategies in marketing what we do.
With the media, it is in demonstrating the quality of our experts and the terrific content that they can bring, which in turn makes the media outlets life easier as they are able to rely upon a quality source of content.
With the experts, it is using quality lead sources to identify leading experts in their field, and then presenting to them the potential opportunities that media coverage, targeted at their key demographics can have in promoting themselves and their business.
8. How does content play into your online strategy?
We have a very solid online presence, and we use social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to communicate views in regards to the media to our existing and potential clientele.
This forms a very important part of our marketing strategy, as we are also experts in what we do. And we need to be seen as such through both digital and traditional media forums.
9. What are some key performance metrics you value when measuring success in your position?
My view on measuring performance metrics on success is a simple one. And that is how many of the identified experts elect to take a listing with the Media Stable, and once listed how many continue with the service beyond the initial 12-month subscription. I am pleased to say that on both those counts we are performing extremely well.
Of course, to get there you need to be sourcing opportunities from quality lead sources, and get to the right type of prospects to ensure you can create enough opportunity to generate the volume of clients you are after. This is a performance metric I measure weekly.
10. What is an area of marketing that Media Stable has had trouble mastering and how do you overcome those hurdles?
The key to success in whatever you do is to constantly monitor and measure what you are doing, and I am always asking the question: What is working? What is not? Why did a campaign succeed? Why did it fail?
Learning key lessons that will improve what we do for existing and future campaigns. Of course a great deal can be learnt also from keeping an eye on successful campaigns outside your own business.
Quite often you will come across little gems that can be adapted and applied to your own campaigns. My motto in life is to ‘never stop learning.’ The moment I think I know it all, is the moment that I begin to move backwards, and that is a place I never intend to be.