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Grace Staten | Vice President of Marketing

Grace Staten: Transcending the Attributes of Sheer Brilliance

Transformational leadership is a management style that inspires people and drives positive change in novel and sometimes profound ways. Transformational leaders are typically optimistic, lively, and passionate. Not only are these leaders worried and engaged in the process, but they are also committed to ensuring that every member of the group succeeds.

Transformational leaders conquer fears and analyze risks regarding challenges, abilities, and organizational vision. They also inculcate tough decisions in the face of these possible risks.

A transformational leader is willing to contemplate some of these risks and what else they might imply for the organization’s overall future. Exhibiting these traits while embarking upon the zeniths of excellence is Grace Staten, Vice President of Marketing at Coastal Wealth.

As Vice President of Marketing, Grace has a unique position to build a strong connection with prospects, clients and recruits in the work she does.

In this interview with Insights Success, Grace shares valuable facts that highlight her professional tenure and the journey so far in the dynamic industry.

Below are the excerpts from the interview:

Grace, brief our audience about your journey as a business leader until your current position at Coastal Wealth. What challenges have you had to overcome to reach where you are today?

I started my career in the financial services industry as an advisor’s assistant. This advisor was also a mentor through my college and had an opening in her firm. Through her encouragement, I fully embraced the position and the industry by getting licensed in securities and volunteering in external industry organizations. I promised my mentor that I, too, would mentor other females when I went further in my career which I have continued to do.

I know finding mentors in the workplace is challenging, and it is powerful to have someone to help set goals and hold you accountable. Challenges I still go through today are the inequities women face in the workplace, such as unconscious bias, unequal pay and limited career advancement.

My mentorships have allowed me to be a sounding board for others and helped put things into perspective. I have recently been asked to help build the Women of Coastal Wealth program to empower women to create their own pathways with the support of their fellow female colleagues.

Tell us something more about your company and its mission and vision.

Coastal Wealth’s mission is to navigate opportunities and redefine what is possible. Our vision is to be one of the nation’s most innovative, collaborative and trusted financial solutions firms.

Our 14 guiding principles range from honoring our commitments to our clients, team members and ourselves to celebrating inclusion and diversity as keys to our success. These are repeated at the beginning of any all-firm meeting; we believe in these as we live, work and play within our communities.

Enlighten us on how you have been impacting the marketing niche through your expertise in financial services.

I have been in the industry for over 25 years and have been with my firm for over 15. I have obtained licenses and certifications pertaining to my role and have taken on leadership roles outside of work to enhance my skills.

I create well-defined marketing strategies each quarter for my role, which has helped increase the firm’s recruiting and production. One of the strategic objectives is to impact our target markets and recruits.

The more people we reach, the more opportunities we have. I know that we must diversify the ways we impact various customers in different ways, such as through social media, podcasts, websites or newsletters.

Describe in detail the values and the work culture that drives your organization.

Coastal Wealth’s values are integrity, diversity, innovation, collaboration and responsibility. A strong indicator of happy employees is our low turnover rate. Coastal Wealth has many long-term employees that are highly engaged and are offered continued opportunities for growth in our “Pathway to Leadership” program.

I truly believe we are not just colleagues but have become friends outside of work. Our atmosphere is a positive, supportive culture.

We offer $2,000 a year for education for each employee to further themselves with a degree, credential or designation. We have a very clear mission statement and vision that is branded into our internal communications and announced before every all-firm meeting.

Undeniably, technology is playing a significant role in almost every sector. How are you leveraging technological advancements to make your solutions resourceful?

Technology has really revolutionized marketing and how content is created and produced. It has also changed the way we communicate and the way the world sees us. The power of automation has been a game changer with the amount of work it relieves my team from doing.

For example, we developed an internal firm store with Coastal Wealth items through marketing automation which allows the user to go directly through the site. We are able to create registration pages, landing pages, forms and chatbots using automation.

Social media and e-newsletters have easily allowed us to reach our target audiences quickly, increasing our brand loyalty.

Search Engine Optimization has helped us improve our website’s ranking, generating leads and maximizing traffic. Changing technology is making a direct impact on how efficiently and effectively we operate.

What, according to you, could be the next significant change in the marketing sector? How is your company preparing to be a part of that change?

I believe the next significant change in marketing is Artificial Intelligence (AI). Coastal Wealth is already embracing AI marketing tools that allow tailored messaging specific to our audiences.

If we need an extra boost for content, AI’s content generation can be used for marketing strategies, video captions, email subject lines, and web copy. This can help with real-time personalization in our messaging to reach certain target markets to engage or reengage with our firm. Machine Learning programs can help increase productivity, ROI, and efficiency.

Where do you envision yourself to be in the long run, and what are your future goals for Coastal Wealth?

I see myself continuing to develop my expertise in marketing and contributing to the growth and success of Coastal Wealth. With over 25 years in the financial services industry, I have immersed myself in a leadership  role and continued looking for opportunities to make the department as innovative and efficient as possible.

This includes embracing all new marketing ideas to keep in line or ahead of our competition. Future goals include making our firm brand be known nationwide as we are currently the premiere financial services firm in the southeast. Still, I would like to continue that development as we build, grow and provide new opportunities for our financial professionals.

What would be your advice to budding entrepreneurs who aspire to venture into the marketing industry?

My advice would be for those who want to go into the marketing industry, and I would tell them to be as well-rounded as possible. I would recommend this career to someone who is an above-average writer or can gain access to good copywriting skills, who is creative and forward thinking.

There are so many aspects to marketing that they include a variety of fields, such as content creation, advertising, public relations, website design, graphic design, and many more. Most companies need marketers to make their products and people known, and it is a desirable occupation.

Even if you choose to go into sales, you still need to understand some marketing. For those that are still in school, I would recommend getting a minor within the marketing genre to make yourself more competitive. It also would not hurt to seek out a marketing internship. Creativity and communication skills are crucial to engaging an audience.