Build a Marketing Tribe

by : 

Megy Karydes

July 13, 2015
Marketing Mondays - Build a Marketing Tribe

As business owners, we know our close friends and those in the business are among the best to offer recommendations on everything from new trends to what marketing tactics really work. Informal networks are great, but I've found formal networks not only garner better results but new ideas and some accountability. This is why I'm a fan of creating or joining a network tribe.

So what exactly is a network tribe? It's the cross between a network and a tribe—basically, people who are there to support each other and want to see each other succeed.

How to organize your marketing tribe

A network tribe can be organized in different ways. You can invite similar businesses to your place of business for an in-person monthly gathering, or you can do it online so you can invite people farther out from your territory and have more regular engagement. I'm a fan of creating online groups because you can come and go as you please, whereas it's harder to get everyone together in one room when you have varied schedules.

I'll use a private Facebook group as an example because this format works really well. Yahoo groups work just as well if you don't mind getting a ton of emails. Again, it really just depends on what you're most comfortable using on a regular basis. Stick to what you're already using or doing because that'll make your tribe engagement that much stronger.

If you want to create a Facebook group, create a name for your Network Tribe then start a new Facebook group with that name and immediately set it to Private (or Secret, depending on the level of privacy you want). Then, carefully consider who you want in your Network Tribe. Ask them if they'd like to be part of your group, but stipulate that everything shared is to remain within the group. The idea is to create a safe haven to engage with each other and not feel as though you're competing with each other. They also must agree to engage. This will only work if everyone participates.

What to consider when inviting people into your marketing tribe

When you're thinking about who to invite to your Network Tribe, think about skill sets and types of businesses you want to be part of your tribe. Are you weak in marketing but strong in merchandising? Perhaps you can ask someone who is strong in marketing but who can use some merchandising ideas to be part of your tribe. And, because your tribe lives online, you can invite anyone from anywhere around the world. In fact, someone not near you is even better than someone local because they're more likely to have different ideas you may never have considered.

I'm part of several private Facebook groups, and I can tell you they've been tremendously helpful in growing my business. Knowing I have people, some whom I've met in real life and many I haven't, who can quickly jump in and answer a question or help me think through a problem is amazingly helpful. Some people have put into practice the ideas provided by others in our Network Tribe with powerful results—both financially and in terms of personal growth.

From a marketing perspective, consider your Network Tribe as a marketing support partner. Again, consider inviting people from outside your comfort zone. Ask your friends who they think might be a good person to invite (friends who aren't in the business and those who are, like reps).

That old adage of “it takes a village” might sound cliché, but I've found my tribe and I wouldn't trade them for the world. Once you find your marketing tribe, the one that will hold you accountable and share in your success, you’ll wonder how you were able to get through the day without them.

Megy Karydes is principal of Karydes Consulting, a boutique marketing and communications firm and freelance writer who often covers retail for various magazines. She likes her calendars, whether digital or on paper, and has her editorial calendar pinned to her board in her office to remind her what day it is! Find her on Twitter at @megy.