Why is marketing so dang hard?
As marketing grows ever more complex, columnist Scott Vaughan has some practical tips for marketers on how to simplify your efforts so that you can better focus on the outcomes that matter.
I’m sitting around with a bunch of friends on a recent off-road trip. Nearly all have professional gigs and work in some type of corporation. The conversation kicks up about our jobs, how we got started and so on. To get the full picture, we have engineers, sales, finance and operations pros all represented, all with big opinions. I proceed to talk about my marketing role. The grief starts flying: “Go play with your crayons, make us some t-shirts, perhaps a slogan!” No clue as to the complexity and effort required for real marketing.
I tried to explain (maybe a tad defensively) how the marketing profession has changed and what it takes. While I stopped trying to make my case to this group, this conversation continued, with various marketing colleagues discussing how much more diverse and complex — and, at times, difficult — marketing has become. More noise, more data, more channels, more technology. More, more, more.
When I hear “more,” my reaction is a need to simplify. The task for marketing leaders is how to prioritize, streamline and focus to exceed the goals we’ve been given and the results we’re accountable for. Yes, there are hacks. Truly simplifying, however, requires more than mere hacking. It takes a disciplined, holistic approach.
Here are things marketers can do every day, every week, to simplify for greater outcomes.
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