6 things I learned in my first year of working in an inbound agency

Working in an Inbound marketing agency teaches you invaluable life lessons. Read the 6 things I learned from a year in an inbound agency.

Photo Credit: Darren Leishman

I began my sojourn into the exciting, challenging world of inbound marketing a year ago. During this - my third year of full-time employment -  I’ve somehow become more of an adult, willing to learn more about myself and challenging my knowledge.

While I've vastly expanded my knowledge of inbound philosophy, I’ve learned more than I anticipated (admittedly with some unwillingness on my part) about myself and how I interact with the world.  I think a large part comes from working with wonderful people, in a business that’s exploded in scope. So what have I learned?

1. Success takes time

There are no true quick wins with Inbound. Success will happen, but it takes time, and there is a lot of hard work involved before we see real results. If there’s something in your life you want to achieve, stick with it. Eventually, your efforts will pay off.

2. It’s okay to change your mind

Great ideas don’t always work out in the real world. Sometimes, you’ll have the World’s Most Fabulous Marketing Idea™ but when you start describing it, you’ll feel recognition creeping up on you that maybe running a campaign whose acronym is shared with a hate group isn’t your best idea. It’s not about getting an idea perfect the first time, it’s about adapting your idea to fit in with your insights and learnings.

3. Your team will change

Your team is often your most valuable resource at work. They’re your support system; your advising counsel, and your friends. However, the people who make up your team will come and go. You’ll always need a friend, but the person who best fits that role today may not be the best fit a year from now. And that’s okay.

4. Your thoughts and ideas are valuable

It’s easy to feel intimidated when you’re brainstorming with more experienced colleagues, but if you can muster up the courage to speak up, you’ll often find that your suggestions are welcomed. Make your ideas heard - don’t be the person holding yourself back.

5. A person’s background does not indicate what they know

Our inbound marketing strategist worked for years as an Occupational Therapist. Our MD studied interior design. Our head content strategist is a journalist. On paper, our team seems motley and ill-fitting, but we work together to produce amazing inbound strategies. Never disregard a person for what they studied, where they work, or what you think they know.

6. Strive to know more tomorrow than you do today

Marketing changes every day. New ideas and developments come around as often as characters die on Game of Thrones (as we saw with Hubspot’s Inbound Marketing report). However, while trends and tech change, the principles of marketing stay the same. Understanding new trends and applying them to old principles means that you can constantly expand what you think you know; and plumb new depths of knowledge. Lessons take many forms: a quick conversation with a colleague; online training courses; seminars; workshops - pay attention to all of them. 

Life is always going to be challenging, but working in the demanding environment of an inbound agency - with client deadlines, marketing strategies, some tears, but mostly laughter - I’ve learned how to roll with the punches.

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