It’s Ironic

We know from Marketing 101 and Reis and Trout’s book, Positioning, how important it is to stand for the something in the prospect’s mind. For example:

Volvo = safety
FedEx = overnight delivery
Apple = differently innovative technology

When it comes to marketing’s own backyard, we have a problem. Many people (I’d even say many good business people) have the misconception that:

Marketing = sales (or advertising)
Brand = logo

What can be done? Let’s pretend for a moment that you are the recently promoted salesmarketing manager or logobrand manager for “Marketing” or “Brand”. Unfortunately there’s no time to celebrate your new position, as there’s work to be done. As your first endeavor, what would you want to come to the mind of business people when they think of “Marketing” or “Brand”? How would you change the current perception to this new position?

Happy Tuesday!


4 Responses

  1. Wow Bill, talk about a tough assignment.

    I would want these thoughts to come to mind:

    Brand – It’s not what we say we are. It’s what the consumers feel on a gut level.

    Marketing – Everything is marketing.

    I think no matter what the time constraints are, there is no way to get everyone on the same page unless you start at ground zero.

    I’d buy a copy of The Brand Gap for everyone in the company. It’s concise and to the point at around 100 pages with a lot of pictures. This would be a great foundation to build on and hopefully help the company understand the new direction being taken.

  2. Chris,

    Thanks for taking on this challenge. I think you are right – it would be a very daunting task that would be next to impossible unless we could begin again.

    I think I would go about it in a similar way to what you have said. I would start with the marketers themselves and make sure they had a good understanding (hopefully more through implementation in their companies instead of straight theory) and move outwards. The best way that I know how to change perceptions is it to live the change. Instead of marketing being perceived as sales (or advertisements) by telling others that it mean so much more, we need to do more than focus on sales and advertisements – adding to the customer experience, getting and listening to customer feedback, improving the employee experience, etc.

  3. Can’t help but comment here, just cuz these are two pet peeves of mine.

    Marketing, at the end of the day, is about facilitating evangelism. Which includes sales, but doesn’t stop or start with sales. Marketing that doesn’t lead to sales is not successful, but there’s so much that leads to that first sale, and then all the sales after that.

    Branding is the difference. However you communicate that, that’s what branding is. The logo is almost the least of your worries, and should be a result of what you’ve determined as the difference, not a cause that you’re trying to build your business around.

  4. Brett,

    Thanks for your 2 cents and for stopping by!

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