What kind of Marketing do you do?

Those of you who have met me out on the networking scene might have heard me say this before: This is the most pointless question you can ask me. You see, in my opinion, there is only one kind of marketing: The kind that helps your company to meet its objectives by serving your chosen customers better than others.

What people tend to mean by this question is ‘What communication techniques do you use?’ or ‘Do you focus on digital?’

But this is not all there is to marketing.

The answer to the first question is ‘It depends.’ The answer to the second is ‘No. What would be the point of that?’

You see, the days of splitting marketing activity and the teams that carry it out into ‘digital’ and ‘offline’ should be long gone. It’s fine to have people specialising in particular techniques, but a company needs to coordinate them.

If digital is as integrated into our lives as most of us believe it to be then it’s foolish to separate it out in marketing terms. What this separation looks like in practice is a discussion around things like ‘online value proposition’ and ‘online offering’. Do you fundamentally offer your customers something different online than you do elsewhere? Do you believe that your online customers are different from your other customers that live somewhere else? Because neither of these things should be the case.

It’s fine for people and companies to specialise in the use and application of digital techniques. We all need an expert every so often. But it’s not a type of marketing. The implication for business owners is quite simply: Someone needs to be responsible for joining up the dots!

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