Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Okay, Is Marketing Really All That Complicated?

It seems that every time you look around, you find more complex solutions to the most simple marketing problems.. reaching your audience, effectively communicating, and helping customers advance their business forward.  Quite honestly, I don't see what's so difficult.

Okay, so maybe you need experience across a lot of disciplines to make a real difference with marketing today.  From advertising to direct marketing to PPC, today's marketing professionals need to have a wide knowledgebase and be able to deliver the goods.

From my perspective, the basic principles of "listen to your customer" and "think value" still reign true.  Here are some tips for staying on top of your marketing game:

1.  Always be reading and learning.  Learning can happen in many ways.  Whether you're reading an expert blog post, news, or the latest marketing book to hit the shelves, never assume that you know-it-all.

2.  Listen to your customers.  The have an uncanny ability to tell you how it is.  Are they happy?  What do they like about your products, services, communications, etc.?  Are they unhappy?  Why?  What can you do about it.

3.  It's about message points.  Are you controlling all of the touch points that communicate something about your brand?  When someone calls your office, are they receiving a consistent user experience that embodies your brand and what you stand for?  Think about your key messages and where they are communicated.

4.  Keep it simple.  During my career I've probably thrown out a forest worth of useless collateral.  I'm not someone who has loads of time to read about your product.  Show me how it works, what it does, and how it's going to make my life easier and maybe we'll talk about it:)

5.  Create a dialog.  Whether interacting with your internal marketing team, the salesforce, or your customers remember that communication is a two-way street!

Give consideration to each of these aspects of marketing.  Always be learning, asking yourself questions, and challenging the status quo. Even when things are going great, they can be better!


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