Creative Industries and Media: Digital Marketing Vital For Businesses
2014 exceeded expectations for Pride Park public relations consultancy BH PR and Communications – and director Donna Hill believes 2015 will result in further growth for the firm.
She said: "Continued improvement in business confidence, coupled with a wider appreciation of the business benefits of social media platforms, resulted in increased investment in PR and communications campaigns, both in terms of additional spend from our existing client base and campaigns for a number of new clients.
"Content marketing promises to be the buzzword in 2015, with more opportunities for communications professionals to build awareness, engagement and relationships with target audiences and the media.
"We plan to recruit two public relations professionals and one graphic designer in the new year to keep pace with increased demand for our range of communications services."
Kevin Palmer Media Services
MEDIA veteran Kevin Palmer believes that firms need professionals to get the attention of potential customers.
He said: "Hopefully, economic growth will continue and businesses will need and want to put their messages across and tell stakeholders – such as employees, their industries, and the public – their good news.
"The general election will take center stage and may create uncertainty, but it is important that organizations which have stories to tell use professionals so they can make their voices heard above the party politics."
THE design, PR, digital and media agency secured good client wins in 2014 and hopes to build on that during 2015.
Managing director Robert Eley said: "There's seemingly always a reason for companies to hold back from marketing.
"No sooner has the dust settled on the Scottish referendum, amid signs of economic recovery, than there is now the backdrop of sustained public sector cutbacks, the looming general election and wider uncertainty internationally.
"History shows, however, that those companies who hold their nerve and spend wisely on marketing do well in good times and in hard times.
"As ever, the best advice is to maintain a robust and appropriate marketing presence, taking advantage of a well-planned mix of tactics, both traditional and digital."
CREATIVE agency Katapult expects further increases in demand for its online services.
Business development manager Emma Jones said: "The last couple of years have witnessed a dramatic shift from traditional to digital marketing, moving towards a more cost-effective and focused model of communication.
"With over 90% of buyers now starting their research for new products and services online, it is increasingly vital for our customers to get found by their prospects online and engage with them effectively via targeted and relevant communications.
"With that in mind, we expect to see an increased demand for our digital marketing and inbound marketing services in 2015."
LAST year, the Allestree business took on two members of staff, added new customers and launched a video recording service.
Managing director Andy Ball said: "PR and social media have been huge areas of growth for us and we have delivered measurable benefits to customers' sales.
"In 2015, video will be important. Creating short videos without blockbuster budgets is what's needed and Balls2 News gives businesses the opportunity to record video content at Balls2 Marketing's offices in Allestree every month.
"Being part of Marketing Derby and working collaboratively with local businesses has been really exciting for us and we're looking forward to working with more local companies in the new year."
THE Friar Gate-based creative design agency predicts continued growth in terms of new and ongoing client relationships, further employee recruitment and staff development during 2015.
Director Martin Griffiths said: "We are seeing an increase in the number of clients engaging with us, recognising the benefits of our return-on-investment approach to fully integrated marketing and the need for sector-specific and bespoke collateral.
"Derby is a centre of excellence for the creative industries.
"Our aim is to demonstrate to businesses in all industrial sectors who are based locally and regionally that the expertise and creativity they require is available on their doorstep."
THE Derby firm, a leader in providing public relations for the gardening sector, finished 2014 on a high, welcoming a new member of staff and new clients.
The Friar Gate Studios firm boasts Wilkinson Sword, Wolf-Garten, Mr Fothergill's Seeds, the Posh Shed Company, Briggs and Stratton, Griffin Glasshouses and Q Lawns among its clients.
The latter has launched Meadow Mat, a turf-studded with native British wildflowers to help halt the decline in native meadows.
Director Graham Paskett said: "Gardening remains the cornerstone of the business and continues to grow in popularity with the public. We're all very excited for what 2015 holds."
Essential Print Services
POTENTIAL expansion into a larger office and recruitment could be on the cards for Pride Park-based Essential Print Services this year.
Director Yvonne Gorman said: "Last year was phenomenal for us. It's been so rewarding to see the confidence that companies have regained to use print to encourage sales.
"This year, I predict we will see more ambitious print projects with clients discovering that digital marketing often requires tangible media, too. With the predicted increase in workload, we will need to find more Print Angels to help us, which in turn, could lead to an office expansion or an additional office.
"There was much more awareness for Small Business Saturday this year and I felt privileged to be a keynote speaker at Derby City Council's very first event for the day. I predict that this year's will grow exponentially in popularity and Derby's retail and business community will feel some real benefit."
Essential Marketing Solutions
An acceleration in the move towards online marketing is being predicted by Essential Marketing Solutions' Sharon Stevens-Cash.
She said: "Marketing is about keeping one step ahead and I have already seen a shift in many businesses spending more on digital marketing than ever before.
"However, I pr