Elevate Your Marketing Game: Exploring PRAXIS U

PRAXIS U Matt Juniper

Every year, companies invest significant amounts of their annual budget on training and development for their teams. At PRAXIS, we identified an opportunity to leverage our expertise as seasoned agency partners to provide additional value to our clients. Through PRAXIS U, we provide clients and select prospective clients with robust and cutting-edge learning sessions at no cost (and with no strings attached) – and we may even treat your team to lunch!

We sat down with PRAXIS Partner, Matt Juniper, to share more about PRAXIS U, the series of complimentary one-hour learning sessions that have been a hit with marketing departments of clients and non-clients alike.

What is PRAXIS U and when did you first start offering it?

Being curious is one of our three core values at PRAXIS, and we offer ongoing learning sessions for our own team to build on their skills and knowledge. I remember sharing that we were doing this with one of our clients back in 2018, and he was immediately intrigued. He asked us if we’d be willing to bring it to his team and we jumped at the opportunity to showcase and our knowledge with a valued client. From there the concept of PRAXIS U was born – we decided to start offering it to more clients as a way of adding value to our existing relationships. Then we started offering it to prospective clients as a way of getting to know each other, and test driving the expertise we’d be bringing to their teams.

What is the typical format of a PRAXIS U session? If I signed my team up for one, what should we expect?

PRAXIS U complimentary learning session

The first thing we do is understand what knowledge gaps your team is looking to fill. We have several different sessions across a variety of different disciplines to choose from, and we are constantly evolving our offerings to meet current demands and trends in the marketplace. Examples of sessions we currently offer include The Democratization of Influence (a think piece on the state of influencer marketing), Driving Credibility in a Post-Earned World (an examination of bestinclass public relations at a time when the Canadian media landscape continues to shrink), Impactful Organic Social Media in the Era of Paid, and more. But we’re also open to creating a bespoke session if that’s what a team needs, just let us know! 

We walk the team through our presentation either in person or virtually, and our sessions are jam-packed with current insights, ideas and case studies. The audience is encouraged to participate in the discussion as we go, which can make for some lively conversation and even healthy debate. What I personally love about our sessions is that no two are exactly alike, they evolve based on what each team is most interested in and how engaged they are in learning. I also love that the sessions routinely feel mutually beneficial – I always walk away from a session feeling like I learned something as well. Either from the questions the participants ask or the insights about their business that they share.

How do you tailor the sessions to accommodate diverse skill levels and backgrounds of attendees?

When we’re booking a session we often start with a brief kickoff call or a survey to get a sense of the knowledge level of the group. This helps determine where we can bring the most value. If the group is big enough and has large variations in baseline knowledge, we may break it into two smaller groups or even hold two separate sessions. Our goal is to meet people where they are and inspire them to take their thinking to the next level. With our current clients, we’ve had success sharing content to the leaders in advance, then collaborating with them to customize it for different teams in their organization. We were even asked by a Marketing client to put together a learning session for their Legal department, to help them all get on common ground so that they had a greater understanding of the influencer and social media landscape, helping to ensure that legal reviews and approvals of content went more smoothly.

How does your team come up with topics for the sessions? Any predictions on what might become hot button topics in the future?

At least once or twice a year, our team will brainstorm new topics based on what our clients are doing, where we see the marketplace evolving, and what we ourselves are interested in learning more about. As a team of curious marketers, we have our fingers on the pulse of hot button issues and trends and these sessions are always ripe with great ideas for topics. Then we tap into the expertise of our team to develop these new sessions based on our own work and experience, where we’re seeing other companies succeed and the latest research and knowledge available. For instance, right now, AI is a hot topic with marketers, particularly as we look for new ways to be more efficient with our marketing budgets and we begin to understand the impacts AI will have on the world of public relations. As a result, our team is working on a session that we’ll be debuting in late June 2024 on the topic of “Generative AI’s Impact on PR & Reputation Management”.

What sets PRAXIS U apart from other training programs or learning opportunities available in the marketing industry?

PRAXIS U Erin Morra

As a successful agency, we need to innovate and stay on the cutting edge of trends in order to stand out. We live and breathe the material we present day in and day out. Therefore, in our sessions we can go beyond the theoretical to offer comprehensive one-hour learning sessions based on handson experience. We have an insatiable curiosity to stay on top of what’s working, what isn’t, what’s new, and what’s upandcoming, all with the goal of helping brands stand apart from their competitors. We don’t cookie-cutter our sessions; they’re customized to each audience and ever-evolving to bring the latest and greatest thinking. And, they are offered at no cost to our current and prospective clients.

Who do I reach out to if I want to learn more?

Our new President, Erin Morra, is taking bookings now and marketing teams are encouraged to email her at [email protected] today!