One of my favourite groups on LinkedIn is called Sticky Branding, which is run by Toronto based management consultant named Jeremy Miller. The people who belong to this group are pretty smart and the discussions are always interesting. This post contains the thread of one discussion that I found particularly insightful, eye opening and very helpful in my ongoing quest to understand marketing in all its various dimensions.
Brevity being the soul of wit and all, please note that I have edited a number of these comments down to the soft centre of chewy goodness.
If you’re interested in or participate in marketing, Sticky Branding is a terrific group to join.
PS: Thanks to everybody who participated in this discussion.
Stephen Rayfield What is the number one mistake marketing people make?
Marketing does a number of things as they develop and execute strategies, plans and programs. Given how complex this area of business is what is the number one core mistake marketing people make?
John Runk • Not putting themselves in the shoes, or the minds, of their own customers.
Kathy Brunner • Not consistently staying focused on how to help the customer and remain top of mind.
Wolfgang Franke • Backwards marketing — where a business owner creates a product or service and then attempts to find a customer. Also: “me too” marketing, where the business owner believes that being like the competition is the key to success, when just the opposite is true.
Dawn Finnegan • Not articulating a differentiated value proposition — or worse, not delivering on it.
Jeff Siwak • Lack of research regarding where prospective customers are likely to be found and how to best reach them with the company’s (compelling) message.
Fayge Gewirtz • When a company tries to make themselves too “corporate” and has no individual personality. They end up meshing with the rest of the competition and do not stick out in the market.
Jim Murray • I’m with John Runk. Understanding the benefit that is received from your product or service means understanding your target group intimately. Once you have a grasp of that psychographic you know a lot about how to talk to your audience.
Vickie Sullivan • Executing the wrong strategy. By the time folks figure out they’ve made a mistake, they’ve gone so far down the road that it’s almost impossible to go back!
Kristina Witmer Not encouraging the use of real data and openly accepting the risk of trying new things. Learning and getting to something even better is always the way to go!
Janet Jennewein • Re-branding for the sake of re-branding. You have to stick with the investment and reap the reward of having a logo or brand that people learn over time.
Stephen Rayfield • This discussion is making some great points for people to consider. I agree with Wolfgang and Kristina the rebranding is often client driven. Has Disney changed Walt Disney’s signature logo or has Coca-Cola updated their logos. No, and they seem to be doing fine.
Debby Girvan • The absence of an integrated marketing plan. Without this “blueprint” many businesses waste time and money on marketing tactics and strategies that don’t produce the results they expected.
Howard Kaschyk • Complacency. What I mean by that is it worked last year no reason to not do it again. I call it selling to yourself. That means decisions and actions are based on if personally they would respond.
Badrinarayanan Ramakrishnan • The number 1 mistake would have to be when a marketing professional starts playing the role of a sales person.
Graham Kennedy • Not spending enough time developing advocates and supporters of a marketing orientation within your company or organization. It should be central to a marketer’s role.
Christopher Gray • Thinking your viewpoint is the only valid one. Learn about other industries and talk to other marketeers.
Robert Wright • On the top of Philip Kotler’s ten deadly marketing sins, is the following sin… The firm isn’t sufficiently market-focused and customer-driven. If you don’t know where you are going, don’t be surprised when you don’t get there
Jani Hautamaki • Some companies tend to think about marketing strategy as a separate task, apart from other strategies and objectives.
Yasin Ahmed • In my opinion it’s failing to build trust with customers. We’re engaging clients more than ever in today’s society, but to think of that engagement as trust, is a mistake. Customers will lean towards those they trust, regardless of the reality in the marketplace. With all the plethora of information out there, customers are looking for companies to trust so they don’t have to worry about all the work.
Carole Pyke MCIM • Not knowing who the customers are which makes it impossible to develop true relationships because the messaging is incorrect.
Tammy Barley • Insufficiently researching your market and insufficiently researching your competitors. Exhaustive advance research enables marketers to sharply define and target the niche market. .
Lawri Williamson • Paying more attention to the bottom line than to customers. If you take care of your customers, they will stick around, and your bottom line will take care of itself.
This is a synthesis of the comments to date. But this question has real legs and new comments and discussion should be happening for quite a while to come.
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