Article

Gaurav Belani
Gaurav Belani 19 May 2020

7 False Myths About Remote Marketers Debunked

In this article, let’s debunk seven myths that companies often believe about remote marketers.

In the blink of an eye, the concept of “going to the office” vanished worldwide. The Covid19 outbreak has made everyone work remotely. Further, the sudden setup of home offices has compelled us all to question whether or not sticking to the traditional nine-to-five office routine is worth it.

Professionals from backgrounds like IT and operations, sales, more importantly, marketing have a reason to rejoice given the nature of their work. However, many companies are not too enthusiastic about embracing this change even though this could be permanent.

Ever since the world locked down early this year, online interest in remote working policies has grown exponentially. Businesses operating remotely for the first time have been rendered un-equipped - without any remote work guide to follow.

And where there is a lack of clarity, there are stereotypical assumptions. In this article, let’s debunk seven myths that companies often believe about remote marketers:

1. Working from home means loss of productivity

Given the creative nature of a marketing job, being confined to a literal box (read: cubicle) can be limiting for many marketers, which is why they are traditionally adept at working remotely - whether home, cafe, or co-working space.

However, many employers still opine that remote workers do not work when they are away from the supervision of the office. They are mistaken! Seventy-seven percent of employees are more likely to work better when at home.

Besides, a 2020 FlexJobs survey found that 65 percent of employees are more productive when they are working remotely. This is because they can dress comfortably, avoid the distractions of office chatters, and not waste time commuting.

2. Remote marketers are out of contact

Managers often protest that communicating with their remote marketing team members is a challenge. However, most daily tasks can be discussed and managed just as efficiently over calls and messages as in person.

Tools such as Slack and Trello make it extremely easy to stay connected, assign tasks, and share information no matter wherever the marketing staff is located.

Rather than discouraging remote work, therefore, it is necessary to promote a culture wherein the entire marketing team logs in at least once a day on the preferred communication channel for a catch-up so that everyone is on the same page about their responsibilities.

3. Data in the hands of remote marketers is unsafe

All marketing teams use multiple social media scheduling tools, project collaboration software, and analytics dashboards daily, which means no company can’t take data management lightly.

Many employers hesitate to introduce remote working because accessing sensitive data from a home internet connection or a public Wi-Fi connection (such as in a café) makes the data more vulnerable to hacking.

This, however, is easily remedied by setting up a VPN. That way, remote marketers can log in securely and handle office data without the risk of theft no matter where they are working from. Plus, password protection tools such as LastPass and Vault are useful in storing and controlling access to passwords and account details.

4. Meetings done remotely are ineffective

Many employers believe that meetings with remote workers are ineffective because there is no in-person communication, and hence workers may not be as engaged in the meeting. However, as mentioned above, physical presence does not automatically mean more attention and productivity.

Many in-person meetings can reduce employees’ productivity as they are forced to sit through the entire thing instead of devoting more time to useful tasks.

By contrast, virtual meetings allow everyone to get to the point more quickly as there is less time wasted on preliminaries. This makes these meetings more effective and also reduces the need for multiple catch-ups throughout the day.

5. Remote work increases costs

Some employers are not very sure about whether remote working is cost-effective as the marketing staff still needs to be supplied with company laptops, video calling paraphernalia, and VPNs. However, remote work reduces costs as your business spends less on maintaining office space and facilities.

Moreover, 69 percent of millennials are ready to trade other benefits for flexible work options, including remote work, and are willing to accept a moderate pay cut (around 5-10 percent) to enjoy the benefits of working from home. Remote-friendly companies, therefore, can only benefit from a savings perspective.

6. Remote working hinders career growth

This is a concern shared by employers and marketers alike. The lack of physical contact with other team members means that marketers have less opportunity to demonstrate performance improvement and problem-solving skills, which dampens their chances of promotions.

However, career growth is undoubtedly possible, even for a remote worker. What it requires is the provision of sufficient skill-building and developmental opportunities online so that marketers can continue growing no matter where they are.

Companies can invest in advanced marketing, design, or SEO courses on Udemy, UpGrad, and Coursera for their marketing teams so that the learning never stops.

Besides, if the budget permits, they should consider hiring more remote senior managers to set a precedent for growth options, even for remote teams. The main criterion for promotion and recognition should be a performance improvement, not hours logged in at the office. Viewed through this lens, any deserving candidate can be promoted.

7. Remote marketers are unhappy

A common myth about remote workers, across divisions, is that they are unhappier, partly because their workplace is the same as their home and partly because the lack of company makes them feel isolated and depressed. Such is not the case.

An AmeriSleep study revealed that 60 percent of remote workers were, in fact, less stressed than when they went to the office. And this is true for marketers as well.

With a comfortable home environment to work in and fewer stressful factors around, they are less likely to burn out. And with the freedom to work at home and manage their personal lives as they need to, marketers become more creative and productive at work.

Wrapping up

For remote working to be successful for everyone, companies must trust their employees. After all, they are hired for their expertise and experience. Managers should, therefore, need to let them do their job without micromanaging. So, how are you managing your marketing team remotely? We’d love to hear your comments.

(Image Credit: Unsplash)

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