Okay this statement really bugs me. How is it possible that people think that anyone can do marketing? Okay, I guess anyone can do marketing, but not everyone should nor will they necessarily do it well or successfully. I liken this to people who like to tell jokes vs. those who are professional comedians—the fact that you like to tell jokes and maybe you are even funny doesn’t make you a professional comedian. Another example, just because I own a hairbrush and scissors doesn’t mean that I could or should go out and cut hair for a living. See the difference?
Marketing is both a science and an art. Believe it or not, even in pure marketing (not just research), there is a lot of math and evaluations involved—for those of us who do it well of course. Let’s take a simple direct mail campaign (let’s say a letter). Anyone can write a letter, stuff an envelope, put a stamp on the envelope and put the letter in a mailbox. Now, let’s talk about the science behind this and how a direct mail campaign is done successfully. Here are just a few of the things I consider for a direct mail campaign:
- Determine the optimal target audience and what communications method is best for that audience (might not be direct mail)
- Write the message for that target audience, in their vernacular. Determine the WIFFM (What’s in it for me) for that audience and make sure my message clearly and concisely communicates that the WIIFM
- Determine how I are going to get my letter opened—e.g., what kind of envelope am I going to use and what am I going to show through the envelope to get people to open it. Am I going to put something inside the envelope to give it bulk? Am I going to use an odd shaped letter/envelope?
- Determine my response mechanisms—what is typically the best response vehicle for my target audience? Are there others I want to test such as PURLS (personal URLS) or a faxback forms?
- Determine my lead tracking mechanism—By what method am I going to track my leads (where they came from), how am I going to get the leads to the right sales people, what will be my turn around time for leads ( 5 minutes, 1 hour, 1 day) and how many nurturing touches am I going to give a lead before I consider it dead?
- Implement cost saving procedures—determine with my post office how I can get the best postal rates—by doing pre-sorts and other things.
- Do the mailing—print, stuff and mail.
This is a very simplistic example of how complicated simply mailing a letter to prospects can be—if you do the mailing right. Hopefully, when someone suggests to you that anyone can do marketing, you might think of this example and let them know otherwise. So, we marketers aren’t a bunch of monkeys, though some of the advertising you see on TV may make appear like we are (the poop flinging kind).