Hello! It’s been a while I’ve been busy blogging elsewhere and putting the world to rights as you do but I’m back and hoping to get back into the rhythm of blogging at least once a fortnight.
How are you? (do feel free to comment below, I really am interested in the answer)
So I’m in a reflective season at the moment, and in my musings about what lies ahead I began to think about the important traits of a marketer and those I look for in the marketers I mentor and lead. I thought I’d share them with you.
Firstly, let me explain my use of the word ‘fierce’ because the choice was very deliberately. The simple truth is, if you aren’t ‘fierce’ that is relentless and incredibly committed to success as a marketer, you just won’t succeed.
Marketing is one of those fields we’re there is no hard and fast formula, it’s not like maths we’re 1+1 will always equal 2.
Marketing success depends on a number of variables, these include: the strength of the message, awareness and credibility of the brand, target audience, timing, competitive landscape to name a few. Successful marketers are relentless and resilient; if a campaign doesn’t pan out as intended we tweak and test until it does, if a particular activity is successful we don’t rest on our laurels, we build on that success.
Contrary to what many may think, fierceness requires humility as well as confidence, because you need to be alert and in a constant state of learning in order to remain effective. The fierce marketer has to be teachable; constantly evaluating, assessing the data, keeping an eye on the external environment, no matter how great you think you are there is always more to learn. This is particular true in a dynamic industry like marketing where things are constantly changing and developing.
Traits of a successful marketer
Confidence as defined in the Merriam Webster dictionary is:
The feeling or belief that you can do something well or succeed at something.
Real confidence comes from a high degree of competence, you simply cannot be confident if you don’t know what you’re doing. The lesson here is study to show yourself approved; read broadly, study the market, study the competition, study the successes and failures of others in your industry. It also takes practice, the more you put what you’ve learned into practice and see it work, is the more confident you’ll be in your decision making moving forward.
Marketing decisions are often riddled with uncertainty, you often have to part with large sums of money with no absolute guarantee that what you’re investing in will actually work. Here’s where it’s imperative that you believe in your ability and have the confidence to make tough decisions when called for.
They key is to be confident enough to make hard decisions and humble enough to make adjustments when necessary.
Learning about what others have done and are doing is great, but there comes a point where you have to make what you’ve learnt your own. You have to get creative with your marketing tactics because more often than not it isn’t the marketing channel that makes the difference, but how you use it.
If you take a look at these recent campaigns that have proved very successful, you’ll see that it wasn’t the channel or tactic that made them a success but the idea behind them.
- Schedule thinking time: plan time to do nothing but think, find a scenic spot and just chill. It’s amazing what the mind comes up with when it has time to rest
- Carry a notepad with you everywhere you go (a still like paper, but I’m also a fan of the Evernote app if you prefer digital): this enables you to capture ideas as they come, you never know when a good idea will come in handy
- Think about how you can use new channels like Periscope
- Think about using old channels differently
- Brainstorm and collect ideas from those around you. True innovation lies in teams not individuals
- Learn from the kids
Marketers have to be master communicators. We have to know how to speak well, write well and listen well. You can have the best idea in the world but if you don’t know how to communicate it in a way that convinces peers and management, attracts an audience, helps convert prospects to customers etc. your idea has very little value. The ability to communicate well can literally be the difference between success and failure.
Invest time in learning how to communicate well:
- Get honest feedback from colleagues and friends regarding ways that you communicate well and where you might need improvement.
- Practice writing whenever you have the opportunity, writing has become an essential skill for the modern marketer; start a blog, even if it’s for your eye’s only at first, help the PR team with content etc.
- Practice your negotiation skills whenever you have the opportunity. Negotiation skills are important not just in relation to money but for things such as getting buy-in from colleagues and c-level management for ideas, enlisting support from other departments to make a project happen etc.
I hope you’ve found this useful, if you need help developing these skills, feel free to contact me or comment below.