There are a lot of ways to spend your marketing budget these days.
You could buy digital advertising in a hundred different incarnations. You could create content. You could advertise on traditional media. You could hire college kids to do guerilla marketing. And, the list could go on…
All of these ways to spend your money fall into one of two buckets: marketing investment or expense.
Most of these have some amount of merit. They’ve all worked at some level at some point in time. You can be successful executing any combination of them.
But, you have to choose. You can’t do everything.
We were always taught not to judge a book by its cover. The lack of cool fonts and flashy pictures doesn’t mean it’s a bad book. In general, we take that advice and apply it to many other facets of life.
Not judging a book by its cover is wise advice when you are standing in your public library. It is not, however, universally wise advice.
In fact, when it comes to assessing the possibility of working with a new company, whether purchasing their product, starting a partnership, or whatever, you must absolutely judge by the cover.
It’s really easy to dismiss your competition as incompetent. It’s easy to tell customers that they are no match for what you offer. It’s easy to profess all their shortcomings.
It’s especially easy when you don’t have to provide any tangible evidence for your claims.
Lack of respect for your competition, means lack of fear. To be less “doom and gloom” it means lack of consideration for their place in the world. And, there place in the world–in the market–is real, whether or not you choose to acknowledge it.
You could ignore them, or you could respect and understand them.
It’s really easy to blow off your competition, but what does that say about you?
…especially if you are blowing off a competitor who is beating you?
Should you do inbound marketing or content marketing? What’s the difference? Can you do both? Should you do either?
These are questions that many marketers are not prepared to answer. They are questions that other marketers answer incorrectly. It’s kind of a complicated discussion about nomenclature, but it’s worth having.
In this post I’ll dive into how some people differentiate inbound marketing vs. content marketing. I’ll also give you my take, which I think is somewhat unique.
Think about your organization, five years into the future. You have a choice about your direction. Which way do you want it to go? Which way does it have to go?
There’s a lot you can control–that you can change. There’s even more that you can’t. What are you going to choose to change today, so that you will be here tomorrow?
According to this article on IM Soup:
…more than 60% of business marketers are planning on investing or increasing their investments in some form of marketing technology.
60 percent! That’s it? There’s something very wrong here.
We get very hung up on the intricate details of modern marketing–the complex, dynamic technology-driven landscape it has become. We’ve really made a mountain out of a molehill.
But, sometimes an experience brings you back to Earth. Sometimes you are reminded of just how simple marketing is.
I recently had an experience like that, and I want you to learn a lesson from it.
I was pretty excited when I saw the headline for this article:
Avoid The Martech Wormhole: Tips For Integration So You Can Focus On The Customer via Marketing Land
Marketing Land usually has really good stuff, but I was disappointed in this one. The author made a generalization that I see a lot–one that I think is incorrect and maybe even harmful:
…that ad tech and marketing tech are the same thing. They are not!
The hipsters of the marketing world would have you believe that you’re doing it all wrong–that you should, in fact, be growth hacking.
Growth hacking is modern.
Growth hacking is effective.
Growth hacking is rebellious.
Many of the concepts preached by the growth hackers of the world are excellent. Many of them are ones I use every day. But, I have an issue with the idea that we are “hacking” anything.
I think it’s misleading, misunderstood, and a poor choice of words. Let me make the case why we should stop trying to hack marketing.
Have you ever heard this quote from author Robin Sharma?
“The mind is a wonderful servant, but a terrible master.”
It’s an insightful piece of advice about mindfulness and intentional living. When I heard it for the first time, I found myself thinking about how it applies to marketing. (Nerd.)
There are many things about marketing that we allow to master our work. But, I can think of none more common than search engine optimization.
And, that’s a problem.