Industry Specialization vs. Broad Experience: Which is Better for Digital Marketing?


February 7, 2017 By

Dave Larson


When it comes to choosing a digital marketing company to help you create your company’s digital strategy, you may be tempted to choose a company that specializes in your industry. While this may sound good on the surface, we’d submit to you that too much specialization can actually cost you.

Many times industry “experts” can get tunnel vision. They are so focused on what they already know that they sometimes do not see what is going on around them.

Every year, Russell Reynolds Associates surveys more than 2,000 C-level executives on the impact, structure, barriers, and enablers of digital technologies across 15 industries. The chart below shows the percentage of executives surveyed who responded that their business would be moderately or massively disrupted by digital, broken down by industry. As you can see, the impact of technology driven change is affecting a broad swath of industries. We suspect it is pretty much across the board in all industries and governments too.



In a time of rapid change, nimble companies have the advantage. If your marketer is heavily rooted in an industry, it can slow down the adoption of change. They will resist change because change threatens their base of knowledge. In times of change you are much better off with a marketing company that is aware of what is going on around them and will keep your company ahead of the changes.

One size does not fit all

Adoption of new ideas and innovation is what protects your business from being disrupted. Specialized marketing companies tend to live in belief silos. They are so sure they already know the answers they don’t go looking outside to see what might work from other industries.

We’ve seen extreme examples where a specialized web design company was so entrenched that they were using the same cookie-cutter templates for all their clients in that industry. A search revealed, they had used the same template and content for 81 different companies! It is true… if you are a hammer everything looks like a nail. You don’t want your marketing company to be a hammer.

A good balance is to look for a marketing firm that has broad base of experience and has served at least some clients in your industry. If you’re looking for a digital marketing company with over 25 years of experience helping thousands of diverse businesses, call us! We can be reached at (407) 682-2222 or use the contact form below to get in touch.

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