The Craftsman (and Woman) Era
When I first started marketing in the early 2000s, we were craftsmen (or women) – create the sell sheet, write product page or book print ads with the industry trade magazine. While we were moving to digital, many managers relied on direct mailings that eventually took up space on the prospect’s desk just waiting to collect dust. It was all about execution: you were the one who crafted it, so it was important that it was done with skill.
The Management Era
Around 2005-2010, the marketing world evolved, and it became more of an involved role to play. We were no longer just “marketers” working with the best of intentions; in this era, marketers needed strong leadership skills too. We needed to inspire people with our vision while selling internally, and we had to leverage our teams and vendors.
The way things were 5-10 years earlier did not apply since so much changed over time – but we didn’t have to throw away everything that came before or stop learning altogether – the basics of communication are still the same as they were when David Ogilvy wrote Ogilvy on Advertising in 1986. At the same time, how we got things done changed drastically. The key takeaway here? Collaboration mattered more than ever.
The Strategy and Culture Era
Today, marketing, for professionals, is paradoxically easier and harder than ever. With so many different power tools and platforms, it can be difficult for the modern marketer to keep up with all they need in order to succeed today. And when you factor in AI-based software like Slack, Jarvis, Grammarly or Hootsuite where everyone wants power over their own marketing destiny – well that just makes things even more challenging!
It’s time we got strategic about our approach: Marketing has never been an easier game than right now for the do-it-yourselfer thanks largely due to its fusion between technology and human collaboration. But because of all of these power tools, people may turn away from the marketing professionals in place of a tool. But, marketing strategy is something that is here to stay. Think about Positioning and Messaging, Go-To-Markets and branding. These are the skills that we need now.
When speaking about strategy, we can never forget that culture “eats strategy for breakfast”. That means, that marketing is also a culture, a mindset and a vision.
In 2022, the marketing team will be more lean and strategic than ever before. More importantly, they’ll have a new set of tools to help them get there! Tools that are largely AI-based powerhouses. I can’t wait to see what you think about this idea in another 10 years time – contact me if you want to chat any further about it now.