One of my favorite questions to ask is “What is your passion?” The answer allows me to learn about a person so much more…It allows to learn about the object of passion (a professional occupation or interest), so much more. At the same time, I was numerously asked as well: Why Marketing? Why not Finance or something else? So, it would be only fair to share my own definition of it.
Marketing for me is not a matter of pure message crafting and information repackaging. It is not about creative eye-pleasing presentation…It is not about selling and convincing people into a purchasing decision. I say that without discounting the monetary value this function brings to the bottom line. There is no question that marketing initiatives have to be accountable and measurable, add value and contribute to ROI. But, the true motivation is not of dollar value.
Mainly, for me, marketing is connecting with people and understanding what makes their hearts and minds resonate. It has to do with the emotional aspect of social interaction that brings change or moves forward even the most logical planning and strategy. You need emotion to bring change to life. You need emotion to instigate progress.
As an occupation, marketing is:
- Flexible: it allows adjustments in the flow of events; it is applicable across industries, geographies and cultures! You practice and transfer it anywhere in the world! People will consume and trade as long as we exist!
– Dynamic: it is never boring! Constant change what can be better?!
– Broad: the scope of jobs to do, projects to accomplish and specialties to immerse into is as large as the ocean, enough for a life time!
– Deep: one can find 3-5 specialties and become very knowledgeable about them and still enjoy the challenge of change.
On the other hand, being a marketer allows playing so many roles! When I was little, I was dreaming to be an actress (so typical). Being a marketer provides so many opportunities to act and I love it every time I learn something new (play a new role)!
My favorites are:
- When I do market research, I become a detective, a CIA agent, “sometimes under cover”, trying to understand what makes those foreign species (new target market or user) tick…what makes them happy? What connects them? What drives them? What makes them laugh? What makes them “them”?
- When I do competitive assessment and strategy, I become a warrior, General with an army to lead and ability to predict the next steps of the contender.
- When I engage in writing and planning ads or event management, I become a producer, an entertainer and even a magician depending on the mystery level the audience craves for. Mystery does not necessarily exclude clarity and simplicity.
- When I engage in business development, I become a connector, a merchant that fuels the trade of information, opportunities and people.
- When I develop promotions, I exercise my creative mind and imagine myself being a painter that aims to draw a well-balanced masterpiece that brings harmony and evokes a following. Or, I could be an alchemist that works hard on the new recipe of the multiplying substance that has the ability to grow exponentially…
Thirdly, the challenge to curb this trade (marketing) and make it more intelligent, accountable and measurable provides lots of room for thought, experimentation and testing. Marketing can be and should be intelligent. Marketing should be supported not only by emotion, but logic (data, information).
Marketing is the driving force for change in consumer behavior. It is not a self-serving influence and persuasion; it is effective communication that drives our actions through emotion, connectedness or affiliation with the other humans and places our market choices based on common sense.