Move with the times

When something works, we think there’s no need to fix it. This is all well and good until something stops working. And it’s time to recognize the problem that we all know; the energy sector is in dire need of transforming and stepping into the modern era.

The energy sector, much like the geospatial industry that I work in day to day, is one that has worked well for many years, but it’s certainly not at the forefront of being digital (from a marketing point of view), embracing technology and innovating to find new ways to meet customers, market efficiently and improve sales.

The good news is, it’s never too late to explore how digital transformation can work in any industry, including the energy, oil and gas sectors.

Stepping into the 21st century
With almost every business evolving digitally, now is a key time to embrace digital transformation; especially across marketing, sales and business development. Without it, your business will simply be left behind and you won’t be getting those high-quality leads from the businesses you want to work with.

It’s easier to think that content marketing, social media (like LinkedIn) and email marketing aren’t important, especially if they feel foreign to you, but they’re fundamentally a way to speak to and listen to your audience; including those customers you’re keen to work with in future, and potential customers who might not know you exist yet.

Those businesses and customers are still in the early stages of their journey, and need to know who you are and why you’re important. Your digital footprint is one of the first things they will see, and interact with, and can be a huge way for you to show why your work across energy, gas and oil is important to them.

Think about it – when we want something or we’re looking for something, what do we do? Nine times out of ten we Google it! So, if you don’t have a digital presence, you’re not going to be found. And you’re going to leave money, customers and opportunities on the table for another business that has moved with the times and embraced digital marketing and processes.

Previously, we might have done things differently and older, more traditional methods of marketing would have included mailers, cold calling and even flyers to try and attract new business. There’s no denying that in their heyday they worked well, but now it’s become easier, more efficient and more cost effective to do things digitally. And the impact can be much more impressive on both brand awareness and the bottom line too.

Moving away from tired, old methods of marketing is something I’ve seen and helped to drive in the geospatial industry, and for those that have embraced it there have been incredible successes. There are now so many accessible, powerful ways to build your business through digital marketing which in turn will without doubt drive sales, help with recruitment, increase brand awareness and make you a leader in your industry. It’s a no-brainer to embrace change, to move with the times and evolve into a digital approach.

Embracing digital
I am sorry to have to break it to you, but this doesn’t just mean using a laptop, being online and being on zoom calls. Bringing your marketing, your sales and your business development into the digital era means embracing the power of digital marketing and the time saving tools it can come with.

Even planning content for your website, your social media or for emails to clients or your database can be made easier with a clear, digital strategy that makes everything feel aligned. And there are plenty of other digital tools out there that then make the delivery of this easy, smooth and, in some cases, automated so you minimize the manual elements!

It can seem overwhelming, but I’ve found that breaking it down into manageable tasks has worked well for my Geospatial Marketing Academy, and those who have enrolled have found it game-changing for their businesses.

One business that embraced marketing to help their survey business reach better quality leads saw their client base increase by 50 percent! Imagine that, from one shift into more digital processes and marketing, which once learnt can be used over and over again to switch on the sales lever. Seems a no-brainer doesn’t it. And what’s more, it isn’t just more leads, but better-quality clients too.

Another business that turned their attention to their website and made it work harder saw a 200 percent increase in traffic, with not only more people clicking on their website to find out about them, but then getting in contact too.

Marketing works. Full stop. And the impact it can have on your business is immense. Not only will it boost business, but embracing digital marketing, tools and tactics can transform how you work.

What’s the pay off?
It’s easy to think that digital transformation sounds like hard work. However, it’s more about the progress you make by taking small steps to embrace innovation than being an all dancing and all singing marketing machine. For example, you could start by building an email list of customers and leads then send them a monthly email to nurture the relationship and stay front of mind.

You could start to share stories, case studies, and insight from your business on social media; LinkedIn would be a great channel as it is primarily business to business (B2B). You can digitize processes within your business, and take your marketing online through Google ads, social media and PR.

Digital transformation isn’t something that can be done overnight, especially not in busy thriving sectors like energy, oil and gas. Like the geospatial industry I’ve spent so much of my career working in, it takes time and means taking small steps to innovate and embrace change; but for the better.

Elaine Ball is the creator and visionary of Elaine Ball Ltd (EBL), a global Sales and Marketing Consultancy for the Geospatial Industry. She’s passionate about removing the fluff and helping businesses transform their processes to aid the bottom line. With over 20 years of sales and marketing experience, Elaine’s focus has helped geospatial businesses around the globe to transform digitally and make the most out of their marketing. She shares tonnes of tips to embrace digital transformation in her monthly newsletter, blog, website and on LinkedIn.
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