This might seem like an odd topic for the very first post on a website that promotes digital marketing services. Just to clarify, I don’t hate marketing. And this isn’t some weird cry for help. I love my job. But even the best job can have some annoying things about it and, overtime, it’s to be expected that some things will start to wind you up.
I’ve worked in marketing for over 10 years now, so it seems fitting to share with you ten things about marketing that can really drive me up the wall!
1. The Buzzwords
“Content is king”, “disruptor”, “humaning” – just a few examples which will probably be familiar to you if you work anywhere near the marketing space. Every industry has their own language or acronyms that mean nothing to outsiders. You promise yourself that you won’t become one of them, but before you know it, you are standing in front of a group of marketers talking about how your “freemium strategy for gamification provided some great actionable analytics”, while everyone nods along smugly. Which brings me to the next on the list…
2. Smug Marketers
If you have ever been on LinkedIn, then you will have definitely come across a smug marketer. I don’t mean people who are actually really good at marketing, they are welcome to be as smug as they like. I mean the ones who went viral once, by accident, and have been dining out on it ever since.
3. Sales and Marketing being lumped together
Sales requires elements of marketing. Marketing requires elements of sales. But they are not the same thing. They are two distinct disciplines and should be treated that way. Okay? Sales tend to work directly with a prospective client to get them to convert. Marketing is about raising awareness in your products or services and leading them towards your brand. Asking one person or one team to cover all sales and marketing is unlikely to get the results you want.
4. Accurately measuring success can be tricky
Of course, there is really useful data (or actionable analytics, if you like!) that you can use and measure to determine marketing success with your likes, shares, analytics and insights. But, sometimes the real success of marketing comes from the drip feed approach of getting your brand out there and in the forefront of people’s minds. So that when they need a service you provide in 1, 2 or even 3 years time, you are the first brand they think of. Convincing the CEO, who wants results “yesterday”, to play the long game can be a huge challenge.
5. When everyone jumps on the bandwagon
It’s great when you see a brand really get their marketing right, especially when they come up with a new way of doing something or have a really original idea. The trouble is, everyone else then starts doing it too. Innocent Smoothies are often used as an example of a brand who smash their marketing; it’s really accessible, their tone of voice is instantly on brand and recognisable. It works for them. But it won’t work for everyone and often brands that try to emulate them begin to feel disingenuous.
6. The FOMO
Following on from point 5 is the fear of missing out (FOMO). Seeing the success a brand has from trying something different and being inspired by that is great, but make sure it is still in line with your brand. This FOMO can lead brands to make bad decisions, such as setting up a Tik Tok account, when actually you are a stuffy accountancy firm whose target audience think Tik Tok is a new chocolate bar.
7. It’s often the first thing to get dropped
When the workload is high, marketing is often the first area that takes the hit. This is even true for marketers. When I am busy with clients’ work, it is my own marketing that falls by the wayside and is then picked up again when the workload slows down. To be effective, marketing needs to be ongoing and should play a significant role in ensuring the workload doesn’t drop in the first place.
8. When people say marketing is “just sticking some things up on social media”
Okay, SOMETIMES we just stick things on social media (because, you know, it’s good to be in the moment!) but more often than not, there is a thought-out strategy leading up to that point. This also undermines the years of training and experience we have got to that point. Yes, you probably can find a marketer who will “just pop a few things on socials” and charge next to nothing for it, but what you won’t get is community engagement, brand awareness and long term results.
9. There is always something else you coulda, woulda, shoulda be doing
I’ve never met a true marketer who has run out of things to do. There is always more you could be doing. Whether that’s generating more content, updating your SEO, working on more backlinks or developing your online community engagement, to name a few. A marketer’s work is never done!
10. It changes all the bloody time!
Marketing is forever changing the goalposts of what we should be doing to be effective. It definitely keeps you on your toes with new ideas, strategies and social channels to experiment with. And don’t even get me started on SEO!
Whilst the things on this list often annoy me, some of them are also what I enjoy about marketing. Maybe not the buzzwords or smug marketers, but I love that it keeps me busy and there is always a new challenge.
If you find marketing annoying and would love someone to take it off your hands, take a look at my Digital Marketing Services to see how I can help.
I’d really like to know what you love and/or hate about your job. Let me know in the comments or find me on the socials (not Tik Tok though!).