the nuances of Marketing

This past week I had a conversation with someone who I would classify as old-school marketing.  When marketing was purely about creating and communicating the message.  It is not so clear-cut anymore and there is definitely nuances to marketing this generation of new businesses.

Marketing is an important part of any business even if you are a pure business to business platform in the transportation sector or the medical space.  The importance of honing the message of the brand is just as essential for b to b as it is a pure consumer product.

What else goes into marketing these days?  Why do I hear more founders who want to hold their marketing team accountable for revenue?  Isn’t revenue tied to sales and how is that tied to marketing?  Marketing goals can be tied to building an audience and the right audience as much as giving the brand a face-lift.

The biggest question is what do you want to accomplish with your marketing team.  I have talked to companies who have the brand down but have yet to figure out how to build the audience.  Although both marketing skills but extremely different skill sets.  Each time there is a new round of capital or a point where the company needs a little tune-up,  sit down with the C-team and really think about how marketing, sales, and PR all ties into one fully executed thoughtful plan.  Some of the things you want to accomplish might be a two-person job, not a one person job so what are the priorities and the skillsets of the people you hire.

Marketing these days is very nuanced.

Comments (Archived):

  1. awaldstein

    The faster our markets change and the more iterative the approach, the more important it is to own the conversation and lead with your promise.And yes–there is an innate discrepancy between in the inherent nuances of our individual truths and the basic incompatibility of the social web with platforming nuanced discussions of most any sort.A discussion I never tire of having.

    1. TanyaMonteiro

      Nice = ‘own the conversation and lead with your promise’ great line to keep drawing on

  2. pointsnfigures

    sales is a piece of marketing. but, it’s important for founders to recognize that sales is an art form. It’s an art of having, controlling, communicating a message to drive an action in a customer. very underrated part of the startup

    1. awaldstein

      Sales and marketing are connected obviously. In early b2b sometimes the same.Don’t see how sales is a subset of marketing though.Please clarify as I”m curious as in all of my work running both i’ve never make them super and subset.

      1. pointsnfigures

        they are connected but marketers often sift through data sets and try and find ways to target etc. Salespeople are the face of the company and their role is not only selling but providing real feedback to the company. Similar, but different and often different personalities. Another way to look at it is if you are a marketer, you are ensconced inside the company. If you are an outside sales person you should sometimes feel at odds with the company as you see things empathetically from customer perspectives

      2. Gotham Gal

        it is beginning to be. tying acquisition and return rates and sales to marketing

        1. awaldstein

          True that more and more CMOs are acting like GMs and evaluated through the revenue long-term. Big fan of this.True that especially in early stage, enterprise sales people are the ones that create the brand image in the customers mind often.And true that the clearer language and intent are connected cross everyone in the org, including cust support at all, the better.But I still believe after running both, most often together, that the dna of the individual sales and marketing person and the gestalt especially of a sales organization are different.In many respects the greatest skill of the true closer in sales is to create the sense of urgency and their medium is manipulating timing and belief. Marketers in abstract set the environment for this to happen.But yes–the more they integrate the better.

  3. lisa hickey

    Great post and discussion. I’ll just add…Sometimes you want to have a big/long term impact. Sometimes you want to make a single sale.For a company to grow and scale, you need both. Marketing and sales should share a common vision of the product potential, but have clearly differentiated strategies—-but yes to clear ROI’s for both.Don’t underestimate the power of the story. That said—a story is never going to make up for a bad product, poor distribution deals, or a weak strategy.The nuance comes from having a better understanding of the potential customer, targeting messages to what they really care about, and having those messages appear where the customer is most likely to be. Marketing hasn’t changed as much as getting those data points is possible in a way it didn’t used to be. And media is obvious becoming more and more fragmented, so the choice of *where* to market is a much bigger decision.Both sales and marketing are an art. And a science. The art is in the actual communication to the potential customer. The science is everything else.