When Apple Park opened its doors in 2017, it was a marvel of Silicon Valley architecture. The $5 billion “spaceship” is shaped like a giant ring and holds over 12,000 employees in the circular building. While it might seem like the work of a sci-fi-obsessed tech geek, Apple Park was actually designed this way for a reason: meandering through the building naturally fosters random conversations, stronger bonds, and better ideas between coworkers.
Office environments, in many ways, foster better employee relationships by simply having employees in one space. From chance encounters in the coffee room to stopping by a colleague’s desk and chatting about weekend plans, offices make relationship-building between employees easy. When the time comes to collaborate on projects, employees with closer bonds are more likely to work together, give honest feedback, bounce ideas, and praise each other for their work.
Marketing teams get the most out of collaboration and thrive on workplace relationships. Marketers constantly work with different departments, subject matter experts, and customers to develop strategies and initiatives. In a sense, marketing teams are at the heart of every organization, making sure everything is properly aligned. To really drive results for the organization, they need to work closely with everyone, and that means developing strong bonds with colleagues.
Traditionally, office environments have helped facilitate team bonding in the workplace, but work as we know it is evolving. Organizations are increasingly moving in the direction of flexibility and distributed teams (between 2005 and 2017, remote work grew an astounding 159% in the US), where teammates can be located thousands of miles away from each other. COVID-19 is forcing millions of professionals to work from home for months. This presents a challenge to marketing professionals everywhere: how do we achieve that same level of closeness when colleagues are in different time zones?
The answer lies in face-to-face communications via video conferencing. Video conferencing is the best way to create these office encounters as more teams go remote without having to travel for in-person interactions. Here are several advantages video conferencing provides to marketing teams:
In today’s workplace, colleagues can be located across different cities, states, and time zones. While the internet allows us to work together from any location, marketing teams need a closer level of camaraderie and collaboration to produce and execute on campaigns. After all, marketing teams need to cross-collaborate with sales, product development, creative, and several other departments to align business goals. In short: strong relationships are vital to successful marketing teams.
When colleagues aren’t able to work together in the office, video conferencing replicates the face-to-face interactions that help employees develop those strong relationships. Teammates are able to see and hear each other as they would in an office setting and pick up on nonverbal cues—which is 93% of communication. That human connection helps remote workers feel included, which is especially important considering workplace isolation can have a 21% drop in productivity. The end result is colleagues who know each other better and collaborate better.
It’s tempting to retreat towards team messaging and emails for communication, but considering that marketers rely on close collaboration for ideas, messaging might not be the best option. Similarly, audio also doesn’t paint the entire picture. If certain colleagues are too shy or respectful to speak up in meetings, ideas that had opportunities for improvement might go straight into development without the scrutiny they deserve.
Instead, video conferencing makes it much easier to discern meaning from colleagues. Imagine that you’re pitching a new marketing campaign idea to the creative team and want their honest feedback. Without video, people on the creative team might simply say they like the idea—and you wouldn’t be the wiser. But through video, you can gauge reactions much better. At the same time, being on camera might encourage fellow participants to speak up knowing they’re more than just a voice in the background.
Remote employees can often get summoned to headquarters or satellite offices for important meetings or product launches, and this is especially true for marketers. The issue is traveling takes time away from more productive tasks and takes a significant toll on your health.
Video bridges the geographical divide and allows marketers from anywhere to collaborate without having to travel as frequently. Traveling can be reserved for large quarterly meetings and events, while smaller meetings can be easily done face-to-face over video conferencing.
As organizations reduce their business travel, marketers can turn to video meetings to get the same in-person interactions. If clients want a walkthrough of a strategy or support on a certain feature, the combination of video and screen sharing makes it feel as though all parties are sitting in a room together looking at a live demo.
Organizations are likely to deploy video conferencing technology to every employee, but marketing professionals are in the best position to reap its full benefits. Everyone needs to be on the same page to build campaigns, implement strategies, and execute initiatives, and that requires both good employee relationships and the right communications solution to do.
In order for marketing teams to fully embrace video conferencing though, the barriers around video conferencing need to be removed. Striking up conversations with colleagues in the office is as easy as walking to their desk and talking, and meetings are as easy as walking into a room together. But if employees have to take several minutes to open a video meeting app, dig through emails for a meeting ID, and enter login credentials just to join a conversation, they simply won’t use it that frequently.
Consider implementing a video conferencing solution that enables employees to join with just the click of a button. Browser-based solutions like RingCentral Video allow both internal teams and clients to join without having to download or mess with any logins. Users can simply click on an invitation link and jump straight into the conversation. This will help ensure remote marketing teams collaborate as seamlessly as they would in an office, resulting in higher productivity and employee satisfaction.
Learn more about how RingCentral Video can bring your remote teams together. Check out our clip below, and click here to get a demo today.