Contrary to Popular Belief, Marketing is a Great Thing.
I’ll start with a simple explanation of why I chose marketing. I want to help people. Marketing does that through understanding and empowering consumers, resulting in providing products and services that benefit society. Huh? For more background on that you can read my unconventional story.
In a nutshell, marketing is: understanding who people are, learning what they want or need, and communicating those results to the businesses that provide products to fulfill those wants and needs. Then the fun part, creatively finding ways to position the products around the needs of the customers.
The General Areas Covered Under the Marketing Umbrella
- Market Research and Analysis
- Non-profit, Retail, International Marketing
- Product, Brand, Distribution Channel Management
- Sales Management (note, not “selling”)
- Advertising and Public Relations
- New Product Planning
Marketing is for the Customer’s Benefit More So than a Business’s Profit.
Every step in marketing “science” revolves around the consumer. From the development to the pricing, and everything in between. The marketing cycle goes something like this.
Marketing Helps Entrepreneurs & Non-Profit Organizations.
Entrepreneurs are the dreamers, the crazy ones taking risks and chances developing products that can make the world a better place. Richard Branson is one of my idols. Marketing marries innovation with consumer demand. Marketing a non-profit does not just assist in achieving fundraising goals, you also need marketing to find those passionate volunteers who get out there and fulfill an organization’s missions in their communities.
How did Marketing Become Such a Dirty Word?
Some terms negatively associated with marketing are: Propaganda, Manipulation, & Spin. I am going to defend the term “Spin” for a second. First, its really related to PR. Second, when done ethically it’s just turning lemons into lemonade. Not so bad, right? I will get back to that and use some really scary terms like “Buyer Psychology” & “Subliminal Messaging” in a future post.
What’s to Blame For All of the Confusion?
There are so many things I could blame, here are the three I see most often.
- The Misrepresentation of Job Titles – Everyone is in marketing: The cold caller that you just hung up on, and that SEO wizard promising a gazillion leads somehow became thought of as “marketers”.
- The Lack of Distinction Between Sales and Marketing – Sales people work with the data marketing provides, they may market themselves to fulfill their duties, but they are not marketing a product, they are selling it
- The Broad Terms of Social Media Marketing – Getting likes and follows is important to marketing your brand, but if that audience is not qualified it is not marketing
There are Snakes in the Grass.
There are sleazy people out to make a buck at any cost in every industry, the majority of marketing professionals are not finding ways to manipulate you to spend your hard earned money on products you don’t need.
I work with some great small companies and we have built their marketing to focus heavily on building customer trust through education. We inspire consumers to research products, including the ones we want them to purchase. An empowered consumer, is a loyal consumer they did their homework and still chose your product.
Examples of the Rewarding Aspects of Being a Marketing Professional
Branding – sitting there with a business owner and graphics designer when the final logo that we collaboratively developed is finalized. Even more awesome, when they see it on their business card and website or packaging. The confidence it gives a business owner to go out there, and the pride they feel is infectious!
Marketing Through Events – who doesn’t love a party? Integrating the brand with the design of the event is such a win win – Party with purpose!
Customer Relationships – Seeing a consumer share results of a product on social media, or reading a good review. Its connecting people, making sure the right products got in the right hands, and it feels great!
If you still think marketing is a dirty word, come back for future blogs. I am determined to restore marketing’s reputation.
“Our job is to connect to people, to interact with them in a way that leaves them better than we found them, more able to get where they’d like to go.”
– Seth Godin Author, entrepreneur, marketer, and public speaker.
Peace, Love & Dandelions