Marketing professionals or charlatans? (Or “never mind the b*****ks, lets get results”)

I suspect that the title of this post will have the hairs bristling on the back of fellow marketeers’ necks. 

I have likened the marketing industry to that of the “psychic arena” for several good reasons:

1.  Both of them, to the uninitiated, hold a great deal of mystique – many theories abound about how it all works, but there are no firm answers out there, despite the “X Files” promise

2. Clients quite often ask both professionals to look into the future and forecast results without a shred of uncertainty

3.  Both rely heavily on psychological techniques

4.  Both require top notch communication skills

5.  Accuracy and results are very often difficult to measure in both cases

6.  In both worlds, in my own humble opinion, there are those that can do, and a great many more who claim that they can do, causing untold harm to the rest of us in the same industry.

On my travels around the UK as a marketeer, I have come across a great many individuals, who can certainly “talk the talk”.  They may have a way with words, they may sound very convincing, having taken on board the buzz words of the month, but when it comes to the hard graft of marketing, some of them have produced some very shoddy campaigns and material indeed.

Make no bones about it, marketing is hard work.  Of course, there will be the firms who think they are literally doing the business by having regular lunches and drinks parties with their buddies – which the lazy marketeer will be more than happy to spend their time organising (anything for an easy life).  However, for those of us with professional ethics, our job is to keep up with the latest theories and tools, pushing for better targeting and understanding of our client bases; pinpointing the message we want to give and making damn sure it gets out there at the right time and with measurable results.

Lets be brutally honest, none of us are the world’s greatest expert in our trade.  However, we owe it to our employers or our clients to cut the crap, get down to roots level, put in the ground work and get the best results for them that we can.

As I gaze at my crystal ball, I think I can almost see the future.  Struggling businesses with dwindling budgets will be desperate, now more than ever, to achieve the greatest amount of publicity and sales.  I would hate to think that amateur marketeers will take advantage of their plight.  It’s up to us to guide them accordingly; achieving the best results possible for their money and steering them towards a brighter future and a healthier cash flow.

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