When companies, organizations, or individuals focus only on the short term, whether it’s quarterly results on the Street or whether you can get some action at the single’s bar tonight, the same desperation is created by short term thinking. That combined with a profit above all else mentality has turned marketing into the corporate equivalent of that guy in the bar who smells of equal parts aggression, fear, and desperation - and the target audience stays far, far away.
Yep. I can't tell you how much I cringe when someone says to me "we need to do some of that New Media" or "can you get us some marketing on the internet?" Yikes.
What's worse, Penn's point above makes me cringe even more because it echoes something more sinister.
If you're a marketer, no one believes you will use your superpowers for good rather than evil.
So how do you overcome?
Chris Brogan is a fun blogger to read, and he usually comes up with something that makes me think. His recent post talks about Personal Branding and how important and challenging it is. I think it's even more critical for those of us who purport to be in the business of helping others elevate, define, and create awarness for their brands.
I've blogged before about the fact that I believe that your brand is really created not by you, but by the people that use your product or service or seek you out in the vast online universe. Sure, we can contribute to the conversation about how we'd like to be perceived, but ultimately, someone else is going to make up their mind. If you haven't checked out the interesting Brand Tag site, it's interesting fodder for my point. If you look at the words that people choose, sure, some are super intuitive. But it's amazing how many of these "tags" are words that the companies might or might not have chosen for their brands in the first place, for better or for worse.
That didn't answer my question.
Ok, sorry. My point is that in order to really have people believe that there ARE marketing people out there (I'd like to think myself included) that are honestly, truly dedicated to the good side of this craft, we have to continue to bring people interesting, relevant, different, and compelling stuff and stories.
It's not enough to extoll the quality, value, and convenience of Bob's Buttered Biscuits, we have to dig deep, find the unique elements, and tell THOSE to people without shouting at them to pay attention. You can lead a horse to water, after all...
As a marketing person, I think it's my duty not to whore out any old product and polish turds, but rather to find the diamonds in the rough. The untold stories. The nifty, keen, funny, exciting, exhilirating ones. And to be honest, if someone or something doesn't have ANY of these qualities? Well, that's not a problem that any marketing person - no matter how much of a rockstar they are - can fix.
Are you in marketing? How do you avoid being cast as a deceitful, manipulating liar? Or do you?