I've found myself delving right to the very roots of Marcom lately. So much so, that I've repeated the same exact words several times in the past few weeks. I thought I'd share this with you and get your thoughts on the matter._x000D_
To me, every B2B Marcom project has to follow a simple outline, or risk being wasteful. My holy grail is:_x000D_
- GOAL: every single endeavor must begin with a concise, vetted (for alignment), and written goal. "If it's not written, it's not a goal", is frequently heard in the Marketing halls of Indium Corporation (we also say, "If it's not written, it's not a plan", and related stuff like that). To make things clearer to someone commissioning a project, I ask them this: "Close your eyes and imagine it is two weeks AFTER your project concluded. You are at a party - for you. You are being congratulated for an excellent accomplishment. You see a plaque with your name on it, you just received a bonus, and there's talk of a promotion. Wow! You certainly made a difference. Can you please describe EXACTLY what was accomplished, such that this celebration makes sense?" As silly as it sounds, this paints a very serious image. After all, as I've said many times, "we don't get paid to be average". We've got to set out to be unique, excellent, and distinguished. It doesn't often happen by chance - it has to be by design.
- TARGET AUDIENCE: This isn't extremely unique from point #1 - it is very related. Still, it needs to be called out distinctly. It is imperative that a very detailed description of your target audience be made. Too many times I've heard someone say, "We need to get people to ..." - to which I ask, "Which people?" Combining points 1 and 2, we come to this issue: EXACTLY WHO does EXACTLY WHAT such that you are delighted (the party)? Being able to succinctly and accurately answer this question makes the balance of the project much clearer. It also sets you up for the development of (and agreement on) metrics.
- CONTENT: In finance they say, "Cash is king". How true. In Marcom, content is king. This is especially true in my industrial B2B arena. My customers are among the most intelligent, most discerning, most performance-oriented people on the planet. They are constantly on guard for trickery, for word play, and other deception. They speak the language of science, technology, and math ... and they are all about dependable, irrefutable performance. Give them fluff and they'll give you what you deserve - nothing. Give them facts and logical conclusions that are applicable and meaningful to their challenge and they will reward you with their attention.
FInally, what is Marcom's deliverable? I guess it can be different for different businesses and organizations (and departmental designs), but, in my case, Marcom exists to deliver CONTACT. Now, this is not the exclusive product of my Marcom practice - I am also responsible for a set of other related results - but this is my main output (with regard to the sales process). I sometimes think of the entire marketing process as being analagous to a relay race. At the end of their lap of the race, my sales leaders, product managers, technical support, customer service, and business people put a goal, a target audience, and content into my hand. My team runs our lap and hands the sales department bona fide, qualified, and engaged contacts. Real live people who have declared a sincere interest in what we purvey._x000D_
Basics. Sometimes it's good to remind ourselves why we are here. It helps make the difference between doing things right and doing the right things._x000D_
I'd love to hear your thoughts.