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You May Not Have a Marketing Strategy if… Part One

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Ford Kanzler
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Asking customers
Ford Kanzler   11/10/2011 5:17:52 PM
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Tvotapka - We're getting into another topic. Yes. Engage with customers and listen but also realize oftne they may not kow what they want. Incremental improvements, particularly in service can come from customers' ideas. But they're not the only source and sometimes their ideas can take a company down the wrong path.

Tvotapka
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Re: Marketing isnt viewed as a skill by engineering
Tvotapka   11/10/2011 4:14:01 PM
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Marketing lesson: Take this bit of advice from Radio Shack's experience as described in an article by Advertising Age.

RadioShack began asking those consumers what they wanted, reaching out via its blog and social media. The response was swift.

http://adage.com/article/special-report-ana-annual-meeting/radioshack-s-journey-bring-back-a-forgotten-customer/230602/

Anne
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Re: marketing strategy
Anne   11/9/2011 4:41:55 PM
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A company with no marketing strategies is like having no objectives because it is the strategies that helps to achieves objectives.  Marketing strategies help to achieve corporate objectives and corportate objectives aim to achieve competitive advantage over rival companies.

JADEN
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Re: Marketing Strategy
JADEN   11/9/2011 4:31:36 PM
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Marketing strategy is an essential task that must be continually undertaken.  For instance, shifting market conditions, including changing customer needs and competitive threats, almost always insure that what worked in the past will not work in the future, thus require strategy and revisions in how products are marketed.

arenasolutions
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Re: Marketing isnt viewed as a skill by engineering
arenasolutions   11/8/2011 11:18:45 PM
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Well obviously Apple, but that was the easy out. 

Ford Kanzler
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Re: Marketing isnt viewed as a skill by engineering
Ford Kanzler   11/8/2011 10:15:41 PM
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That says it. Unfortunately even when some tech companies grow, the affects of that kind of ignorance and arrogance and resulting under investment in marketing often continue hurting business progress. There is "real work" in designing the product. Great product ideas come from effective marketing and engineering collaboration. However, discounting the "real work" of marketing and sales is ultimately bad management. Could be one of the reasons why you don't see overwhelming marketing brilliance coming from very many tech marketers. There certainly are notable exceptions from brands that do get that marketing makes a difference. I'm sure you can think of a few and that's exactly the point. The ones that are marketing well, AND creating great products, carve out a reputation that makes them winners.

Who are your candidates for B2B tech marketing experts? I'll elect Intel. It took them some years but they got it. Who else?

Tvotapka
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Re: Applying and Policing Strategy
Tvotapka   11/8/2011 10:10:13 PM
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Absolutely. One of the tools we use in consulting is something called a hat pack. This is a written document that contains all of the vital data about a post. It spells out the primary purposes, targets, products and statistics relevant to that post. It also identifies where the post is in relation to the rest of the org board. One policy we often insist upon is a random spot check to be sure staff members are on that same page as you say and that their efforts in alignment with the purpose of the group as a whole. The spot check isn't anything elaborate, it's simply a quick two minute check out in by a supervisor or senior. "What's your product?" "What's the purpose of your post?" "What's the valuable final product of your area?" A quick, certain answer indicates good communication has been in place. A lag means something was missed and needs quick, but thorough clean up on anything misunderstood.

arenasolutions
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Marketing isnt viewed as a skill in many engineering co.
arenasolutions   11/8/2011 8:20:17 PM
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From my experience working with a variety of engineering organizations, part of the problem stems from the fact that many engineers dont value marketing. They think it's something anyone can do, that requires little skills (and of course the real work is in designing and building the product.) So in engineering-dominated start ups, there can be this focus on design, and marketing sort of gets left behind.

Has anyone else experienced this?

Ford Kanzler
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Applying and Policing Strategy
Ford Kanzler   11/8/2011 6:11:41 PM
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Tvotapka - The key challenge after a strategy is developed, is educating the organization, not keeping communcation strategy a secret and also tracking or testing variouos tactics against the strategy. If the tactic does't reinforce or support the desired perceptions and include or reference at least one of the key messages, then its off strategy and needs correcting. This includes directing external resources such ad, PR, web copy writers to assure they're all on the same page.(Pun intended) Once you've got it, then use it...consistently. Is your organization expressing itself in a consistent, competitively-diferentiated way in all its marketing communications?

Tvotapka
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Re: Got Strategy?
Tvotapka   11/8/2011 2:19:00 PM
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Great post on marketing strategy. Definitely some "out points" in place out there among too many companies. For one thing, people are not encouraged to think strategically. Most likely this is due to the fact that strategy implies long-term, pan-determined thinking and that can be difficult to achieve when so many are living check to check, or are not incented to think along those wavelengths. Another factor is the existence of arbitrary orders or data. In other words, people who don't understand the mechanics of marketing strategy will dub in their own interpretations. In in the absence of well-written policy, you'll have instances where folks will literally fill in their own ideas that may or may not contribute to the intended strategy of the group. That can be deadly as it's often difficult to spot.

Looking forward to the next post on this.

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