What does salad dressing have in common with CEO's and marketers?
Well, the chemical properties of oil and vinegar don’t mix well together. There’s no clinging agent that makes them adhere to one another. But, with the proper application (a good shake) vinegar and oil come together just long enough to make a really good salad dressing.
It may not be the best analogy, but you get the idea. Marketers and CEO’s are similar to oil and vinegar. They have a completely different makeup. CEO’s tend to see the big picture. They look way down the road. Marketers often see only what’s in front of them. They deal with immediacy, the campaign, and the objectives that are presented today. In the meantime, the CEO screams for a big picture idea. It’s a challenging mix, but both parties need one another. So, what’s the answer? A good marketer has to be a good business strategist.
Marketers think of themselves as creative geniuses. Their genius is probably what caught the CEO’s attention in the first place. He or she appreciates the marketer’s outside the box thinking, but the CEO also knows that without a grasp of a larger vision, that seizes company objectives, then all the marketing creativity in the world will only be temporary.
Marketers have the solution to their own problem.
To receive an invite to the CEO’s table, marketers must begin to think of themselves as strategists. This involves listening to the head of the company. Really listening. The CEO already has a big picture in mind. He or she knows exactly where they want the company to go; they’ve created a clear vision of the company’s future. It’s the marketer’s job to strategize how to get it there. That will involve today’s campaign, but it will also require visionary thinking for the future.
How Strategists Think
• Becomes acquainted with the target audience, determines how it is motivated and positions the company to meet the needs of those customers, inspiring participation with the brand and always striving for referrals.
• Sets clear goals for the company’s future that aligns with the CEO’s vision and the company’s mission.
• Keeps a finger on the pulse of the marketplace and creates campaigns to match trends.
• Channels creative genius into workable long term goals and takes comprehensive steps that include research an analysis to design a long term plan.
• Strategize within the company’s marketing budget. Strategists are deliberate. They don’t work through a myriad of ideas without considering the demographics first. In other words, a good marketer is careful with the company’s money. They work within the bounds of the company’s analytics.