Before you start reading this week’s post, have you started your homework from last week? If not, read this post, then start working on it. I would love to see clients taking advantage of the summer to plan for more online, mobile and social projects this summer and fall.
It’s graduation time and while lots of commencement addresses are about getting advice from famous people, Here are some key lessons I have learned in marketing, content and communication during the past 13 years – applicable for every industry.
13 Lessons Learned
1. Listen. This is the first step with any job, any time, any career move, any interview, any client, any task. Listen to the problem, ask questions, analyze and then see how you can help.
2. Simplify. If you have to explain your marketing objective (whether it is a message or concept) and it takes more than 5 minutes, you haven’t drilled it down enough. Steve posted this winter about Simpology, use that philosophy everyday. Know where your permission point is–sometimes it is ok to get the project started rather than get approval. Make sure your marketing passes the grandma test.
3. Make Sense. Early in my career, I worked on a promotional rebate offer with the purchase of beer and green beans. I imagined two executives on the golf course making this alliance. I watched the promotion very carefully for 4 months; not one redemption. As a newbie in marketing, I knew it wasn’t logical to buy green beans and beer in the same grocery trip.
4. Get your hands dirty. Doing “grunt work” teaches appreciation for the position and the organization. Sometimes it gives you the breathing space to evaluate and plan for the next phase of the project. When your career is ready to move to the next level, you have honestly say you have “done that” before.
5. Give your campaigns time. In marketing, pushing the latest or the next big thing (and hopefully you are following a plan) is a big part of the job. Attention always goes to the next latest project/release. Meanwhile, your clients haven’t heard about all of the previous offerings, they may have gasp! missed your blog post. Marketers can suffer from BSOS. Your marketing may be old to you, but it isn’t old to a prospect. Stay in touch with your customer service department, so your marketing pace is appropriate for your industry.
6. Know your budget and stay in it. Use FREE as much as possible, cross promote, use the website, incorporate social media and do things for your industry beyond your organization. You can give your organization lots of great free PR when you volunteer to do things for your industry. This sets your organization up as an industry leader.
7. Watch the competition. Don’t copy everything they do, but know their message, then explain the differences (good and bad) to a prospect with your spin. Sometimes you can counter, before the competition has formulated a game plan.
To be continued….next week. And remember your homework to start learning a social channel, it will help your marketing.