Iliyana's Blog

"My Employer" As The Most Trusted Institution in 2019

[fa icon="calendar'] 29-Jan-2019 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Brands and Business, Sustainability

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I cover Edelman's Trust Barometer every year. 

This year's results came out last week and they did surprise me. Positively.

Trust has changed profoundly in the past year. People have been losing faith in traditional authority figures and institutions to help them navigate a turbulent world and more recently, they are losing confidence in the social platforms that fostered peer-to-peer trust because of fake news or false information being used as a weapon

We have shifted our trust to the relationships within our control and most notably our employers. 

People are now bringing their call for change to the workplace where they have a trusted relationship.

Employees are ready and willing to trust their employers, but the trust must be earned through more than “business as usual" and not simply operational excellence or decisions that would impact jobs. An organisation’s contributions to society, its values and its vision for the future all outweigh operational decisions in terms of earning trust.

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Entering the Era of Massive Disruption [Infographic]

[fa icon="calendar'] 15-Jan-2019 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Technology, Brands and Business

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Did you know that by 2020, IoT technology will be in 95% of new electronics?

That's just a year away, yes.

We thought that online and social channels were disruptive but how about innovations such as 3D printing, electric cars, the internet of things (IoT), virtual reality and artificial intelligence (AI)?

These new technologies are completely reinventing how we do pretty much everything in our personal and professional lives. 

And we will all require new skills to be able to do our jobs. In fact, in their research, Accenture Interactive predicts that more than half of the workforce will have to learn new skills within the next five years due to human-machine collaboration.

No wonder then that one-third of companies are planning to increase their innovation-related investments by more than 50% as worldwide spending on technology and services to enable digital transformation (DX) is going to reach nearly $2 trillion by 2022.

But what are some of those investments going to be? 

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How to Create a Unique Value Proposition [Infographic]

[fa icon="calendar'] 27-Nov-2018 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Personal Development, Brands and Business, Marketing

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I often get asked two questions: 

  • How did you manage to build your own brand? 
  • What makes companies stand out in a blue ocean? 

To both of these questions, the answer in its simplest form is value

I began blogging in 2012 while I was still a student with a couple of important goals in mind: learn how to write better as I wanted to pursue a career in PR but was studying International Business, and share all the knowledge I was gathering with the world so that I can help others and by doing so, build an audience. 

Over time, I developed a pretty good readership, expanded my social networks, made tremendous connections and eventually became recognised as the person who invented Inbound PR that led to a book and a ton of speaking engagements. 

I did this by recognising the unique value I could provide to the market that was somehow not there - contributing my inbound marketing knowledge to the public relations practice. 

As for companies, I spent years in consulting

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Imagining It Forward: Innovation, Change and Leadership in Business

[fa icon="calendar'] 16-Oct-2018 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Brands and Business, Marketing, Leadership

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"People can’t just be told change is coming and be expected to spring into action. They have to work through it."

I quite agree with this quote. It comes from Beth Comstock's book Imagine It Forward that I just finished reading.

Beth Comstock was the Vice Chair of General Electric and throughout her decades-long career she has gathered a ton of experience in marketing, innovation and change for business growth. 

The book is classified as a business and leadership book, however, for me it was more of a memoir or the GE story through Beth's eyes and experiences from the last couple of decades in a chronological order, detailing meetings, corporate issues and decision-making challenges. 

As impressive and at times difficult Beth's journey has been, I found it hard to identify the practical tips and a clear plan of action to make change happen while reading the book. Maybe that wasn't its purpose but rather to tell a personal autobiography. 

Nonetheless, there were some nice nuggets and important learnings that I noted on my kindle. I want to share these with you today. I've structured them based on some of the key topics I picked up: innovation, change and leadership. 

Innovation

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Using the Customer Code to Grow Better

[fa icon="calendar'] 02-Oct-2018 09:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Brands and Business, Marketing

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At HubSpot, one of our key principles is SFTC which stands for Solve For The Customer. 

Why do we believe in this?

Because we know that if you focus on your customers, your business will grow better in a much more remarkable and sustainable way.

But truly walking the talk is difficult. 

Not just satisfying but delighting customers is only possible when you have a company culture that puts the customer first through action. 

And you can't just have a department trying to push for this. A customer-first mentality needs to sit on top of the entire flywheel so that you can truly grow better

Such a mentality recognises that the customer experience doesn't start when a customer purchases and doesn't end when they stop buying or cancel. The customer experience starts with the customer's very first contact with you and never really ends. 

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