1. It’s all about money. A small local company can’t compete against large global brands with 3 times larger marketing budgets. The best 20 % of marketing is 5 times more effective than mediocre efforts. David can beat Goljat, but David needs to be braver.
2. If marketing is not working, it’s the marketing departments or the ad agency ́s fault. Yes, but: if the management team can’t decide what the company brand stands for, and if they aren’t able to follow through, the others are destined to fail, too.
3. It’s all about creating great marketing campaigns. A great campaign will grab attention, woo new customers and deepen the commitment of existing ones. Yes, but only for awhile.
4. The secret to being customer centric is to ask people what they want. And to believe the things they say in surveys and focus groups. Untrue. And why? Most good intentions rarely lead to action.
5. Marketing is about telling why the brand is great. The more convincing the arguments, the harder you sell, the more like they are to buy. This rarely, if ever, works. Life is, unfortunately, more complicated.
6. In the near future, all we need to do is to invest in marketing automation software. It will turn suspects into prospects and prospects into leads. Marketing automation is able to make the email campaigns less annoying, but it won’t help much, when we want to change people’s perceptions or behavior.
7. Content is king and content marketing is the solution. All we need to do is match great content to our brands and people will love us. Many brands look at Red Bull and thinkthey can do the same. They forget that they haven’t helped anybody to jump from space lately. And that the only story they have might be in fact – quite boring. It is not that easy.
What should you do instead?
1. Crystallize your brand into a promise in a way neither employees nor customers can misunderstand. Be exceptional in at least one thing: Über is the most conventient way to get a ride and pay for it.
2. Do tangible things that deliver the brand promise, not just a campaign. Nissan’s promise is ‘innovation that excites’. They developed a smart watch for their Nismo sports car range. The watch connects the telemetrics of the car to the driver’s pulse.
3. Treat people like wild animals. Respect them but observe what they are actually doing instead of asking what they intend to do. Focus on what pisses them off. Jet Blue observed thatpeople hated the fact that they didn’t have a fast enough internet connection during the flight – and developed their own superfast satellite link.
4. It is not about you. When you engage the audience, let it be more about actual development than just pr. Be like Starbucks, who tell the status and proceeding of customers ideas in their Starbucking by Starbuck initiative.
5. Innovative marketing is not necessarily an action hero making a split between two moving trucks – but merely a great service innovation that makes a difference in people ́s daily life.
6. Doing more is the new norm – and a great way to differentiate. Zappos is just another ecommerce venture with effective delivery, but the longest calls to their customer servicecan take up to 6 hours. In the automation era, the best marketeers are the ones with the best customer service .
7. Never underestimate the power of good deeds or values in action. Convergence is not opposite to good will. Brands that stand for something are more likely to stand the test of time.