The Importance of Staying Relevant

by Greg Cangialosi on March 1, 2009

Some people get a little shocked when I tell them that I rarely prepare my presentations for a speaking engagement until just a couple of days before the event (Sorry, I know this frazzles some event organizers who request copies of decks before events). The reason for this is simple, although I have my core concepts and messages down, the world I live in is moving so fast that I feel like I almost HAVE to wait until the last minute in order for me to have the most relevant, up to date information, examples, etc in my presentation. I like the edge, and I find that the people who show up to listen like it as well. I do my best to stay relevant in a fast moving marketing & media landscape.

Are you in a fast moving market? Not all markets move fast, but almost every industry is evolving faster than it ever has before. Every industry has a voice, has its leaders, and has its events. Hopefully your organization has an active voice, is looked at as a leader in your space, and shows up at key industry events to build relationships. In this economic climate,  you need to remain relevant and on the edge, now more than ever. Here are three reasons why its critical to stay in the eyes and ears of your prospects, customers and the media:

1. People Like Working with Leaders.

It’s true. People like working with companies that help to define their market and their industry. It’s important to be on the edge in your industry, and ensure that you are perceived as a market leader to the rest of the world. Make yourself a leader, make yourself the expert. This takes time, dedication and a lot of effort, but now more than ever before, the landscape has shifted and opened up incredible opportunities for gaining exposure and maximizing thought leadership opportunities. I can’t stress this enough.

2. Stale Marketing Communications = Not Interested.

Think about it, if you are archaic in your marketing and communications approach,  it SCREAMS to the rest of the world, “We are not interested in our business.” Harsh, but true.  Even though you are interested, a lack of engagement, awareness, and steady communication coming from your organization puts you in the dark ages with how fast things are moving today.

If you still don’t have a blog that is actively being updated with good content, if you are not sending out a monthly email newsletter to your customers and prospects and keeping them in the loop on whats happening, if you are not participating, speaking, and engaging at key industry events, if you are still second guessing the power of how services like twitter, facebook, Linkedin, etc can help your business, and if it makes absolutely no sense to you why anyone would even spend time with these tools, you are at a GREAT deficit in your industry.

In fact, for people in slower moving industries, this is one of those rare moments in time when you have one of the greatest advantages EVER, right now, to “get it,” and LEAP ahead of your competition. Now is the time to use all of the tools available to you and communicate your organizations message, engage with your base, and get out there and get in front of people.

3. Brands Need Personality

Now more than ever its more important to bring personality to your brand, no matter the industry. This is another key trend that smart marketers get. As we continue to move into a transparent world, your brand needs to have a voice, a personality, and the culture of your organization needs to be known to the outside world.

Think about it, at the end of the day, people don’t work with companies, people work with people. To me this is truly the ultimate gem in using the social web for business. It’s about building relationships. People connecting with other people and bridging the digital divide in person.

Every brand has a personality, and its the people that work for the organization that make up its personality. Aligning your entire team with your market vision and getting them engaged with your base only amplifies the signal of your organization.

There are many other reasons and ways to stay relevant in your space, and thats why we have comments! I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions below. Thanks for reading.

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Joe Wagner March 1, 2009 at 4:35 pm

I have found the best relationships are the ones where we share interests outside of the business environment. Almost an extended work day where we can see someone with a different hat. The more people within an organization that share this concept the higher the success rate. Not everyone has a comfort level with meeting strangers. Twitter and other Social Media take the edge off. Sort of a new way to make "warm" cold contacts. Social Media is the new way do do business.


gregcangialosi March 1, 2009 at 4:50 pm

Joe – you hit the nail on the head. People work with people, so the more you can connect and build relationships outside of "pure business" the stronger they are. Good stuff, thanks for reading.


Sherrie Rose March 1, 2009 at 5:25 pm

RE: 3. Brands Need Personality

Greg, you wrote: "Now more than ever its more important to bring personality to your brand, no matter the industry."

and… "Every brand has a personality, and its the people that work for the organization that make up its personality."

My comment is actually a business question. On Twitter and other social networks most folks are representing themselves as the brand in their business. While is great for "following a leader" how does it fit into the overall exit strategy of a business (especially in a business plan that venture capitalists review)?

In my own business, I am at a place where the definition of brand needs to be defined. Is it Sherrie Rose or is it The Love Linguist? It will affect how I position myself on social media.

I'd love your feedback.

Sherrie Rose
The Love Linguist


TimBer March 1, 2009 at 5:55 pm

Great post! These points are relevant to brand marketing messages in general, andy they can be especially powerful when applied to Social Media, as you say in #2.

I just sent a letter Friday night to my company's VP Marketing about how we are falling behind in these areas. I'm just an IT manager, but even I can see how our company is failing to be an industry leader because we aren't keeping things "fresh" for our customers/industry.


Greg Cangialosi March 1, 2009 at 6:20 pm


Great question and definitely a topic that's been heavily discussed throughout the blogosphere. In my opinion, I feel there needs to be distinction between the two, brand and individual. Thats why we have @blueskyfactory @bsfsupport twitter accounts for the brand, and I have my own @gregcangialosi. The same goes for my blog, facebook, flickr, youtube, etc..

That said, its important to me that we have active participation from our team, and not just me. Our "brand" like many brands isn't just me, or another person in the company, its a collective experience. We have a great team of smart folks who have a lot to contribute. And If they choose to use their personal profiles, etc to spread our message and amplify that signal, then that speaks volumes to me.

I think building and growing both your company brand and your personal brand are key, do them concurrently. If you have an exit event at your company, then your company brand goes with it. But you can always be known as Sherrie Rose, the person. Hope that helps.



Greg Cangialosi March 1, 2009 at 6:21 pm

@TimBer Thanks for reading. I hope your VP of Marketing gets the message! Best regards.


Kate Hotson March 2, 2009 at 8:20 am

Thanks Greg , for a newbie to Social marketing this is all a great learning curve but im loving the interaction and relationship building via Linkedin,Twitter etc and incorporating it into my newly launched office products site.From a small town shop where we know all our customers to launching a nationwide online presence is a big leap but actually with social media it is beginning to feel just as friendly and a really great way of marketing ,via relationship building which is in my view a return "to basics" but with a real cutting edge and wider audience. Great stuff..Im loving it


Greg Cangialosi March 2, 2009 at 2:38 pm

@kate Thanks for the thoughts. I am glad you are engaging and building relationships albeit digital. Keep up the good work and build that base! Best regards.


Jason_Baer March 2, 2009 at 6:26 pm

Great post Greg. The opportunities you highlight are even more acute right now, because due to the economy, a lot of companies are simply going into turtle mode. Their silence = massive chance to steal their leadership and make it your own.

I also very much appreciate your ability to spin your pre-event procrastination into a forward-thinking blog post. You sir, are my hero! ;)


Debbie Weil March 2, 2009 at 2:53 pm

Spot on… and funnily enough, the topic of my latest issue of my e-newsletter, WordBiz Report, sent out by none other than Blue Sky Factory. I call it Digital Cupcakes: "Smart marketing in a recession is about building relationships. Most folks are not ready to buy – or hire. Everyone is ready to connect. That's the secret of social media marketing." More at http://www.debbieweil.com



Greg Cangialosi March 2, 2009 at 7:03 pm

@Jason thanks for the kind words :-) I appreciate you reading the blog. Hope all is well in AZ!


Bharathy May 23, 2009 at 6:47 am

Firmly accept to the brand needs personality. I always feel anything in this world happens is because of relationship and particularly in the market it remains. And people recognize a brand by the personality they conceive.