The Dülmen Declaration of Marketing Independence
Over the last few years, many companies have decided to ignore the old-fashioned marketing approach and follow the lead of digital startups and the social media generation. Now, traditional marketing agencies have moved with the times and adopted new digital marketing tactics and technologies to stay competitive.
But being a marketer isn’t something you just turn on and turn off. It’s something you learn, do, and evolve with.
What did you learn in school? How do you want to evolve as a marketer? Which marketing job are you best suited for? There are a lot of questions and probably even more potential answers. But we’re not going to find the perfect fit just yet. That’s why we’re here. To help you discover your passion, strengths, and interests and then match them with the right opportunities.
The good news is that, with some time and flexibility, you can grow and evolve into any job you might want in marketing. The key is to find your perfect match and then take the time to learn the ins and outs of the industry. This way, when that perfect opportunity comes along, you’ll be ready.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the questions you should ask yourself before making any rash decisions.
Do I want to be a marketer?
You might think that marketing is about spending a lot of money on ads or getting free samples, but marketing is actually much more than that.
Marketing is about creating desire; it’s about getting people to not only want, but need, your product or service. So, while sampling and paying for ads are certainly important, you shouldn’t limit yourself to these activities. There are many other ways to get the word out there about your product. You can create videos, write a blog post, or start a podcast. The possibilities are endless.
Now, this doesn’t mean you need to do all of these things to be a successful marketer. Many successful marketers, such as HubSpot’s Mark Schaefer, only focus on content marketing and ignoring the rest. But it doesn’t hurt to know the options and to be able to pick and choose what’s most effective for your company.
What is my special insight into the marketplace?
To be a successful marketer, you have to understand your customers and know what makes them tick. This means diving deep into research, both quantitative and qualitative, to get a 360-degree view of your customers’ behaviors and motivations. This is also called market data or customer profiling. So, when someone at your company asks, ‘What should we call this report?’, you can say, ‘I don’t know. Maybe the Google Trends report for the keyword “marketing” in 2019?’
This type of analysis will not only give you the insights you need to formulate a solid business case for your marketing activities, but it will also allow you to experiment and find what works best for your company.
How do I want to evolve as a marketer?
While some people may dream about working their whole life in marketing and never having to do anything else, this is not the case for most. When you get to the end of your career, you will have a clear idea of what you would like to do next. But at this point, you may not be sure of what that is.
If you’re like most people, you’ve been doing a lot of listening and learning, and now you’re ready to take the next step. This journey to the ‘perfect job’ can be a little tricky, so here are some tips to help you navigate this process successfully.
Start by defining success.
You may have heard the expression ‘a goal without a plan is just a wish’. Well, this may be true, but setting a wish without a plan to achieve it may not end well. So, before you set out to find your perfect job, you should sit down and define what success looks like for you. Maybe you’re looking for a job that allows you to travel the world and meet new people. Or maybe you’re aiming for bigger things and want to become the chief marketing officer of a Fortune 500 company. Whatever it may be, get specific.
What is your definition of success? Do you want to be making six figures per year? Or are you looking for something more modest? Achieving success as a marketer is not about money alone. It’s about developing an effective strategy and then executing that strategy effectively.
Determine your passions & interests.
Now, this is the fun part. This is where you get to pour yourself into your work and explore passions you never knew you had. Of course, you’ll have to be pragmatic about this. You can’t be all things to all people. You need to find out what makes you special and unique.
Think about what you enjoy most about your job. Maybe you like interacting with customers or learning new things. Or maybe you feel most passionate about the creative process. It’s important to find your ‘niche’ as a marketer, something that sets you apart from other candidates.
In the same way you would approach a potential partner or employer and describe your unique selling point, your niche will be your special ‘competitive edge’ that helps you stand out among your peers. The better you are at describing and demonstrating your niche, the more opportunities you will attract.
Take advantage of your network.
Nowadays, it’s not enough to simply have an online profile. You need to create a digital profile that is up-to-date and engaging. One thing you can do to stand out is to connect with people who have influence in your desired industry. Not only will this gain you valuable contacts, but it will also expose your profile to people who can help you get the job you want.
If you have a network of peers and professionals you can connect with, take advantage of this. A good place to start is LinkedIn. On this platform, you can not only search for jobs, but you can also follow relevant people, connect with others, and create a professional network.
Develop a business case.
Just because you want to be a marketer doesn’t mean you need to go into business for yourself. Perhaps you are passionate about helping others, or you want to use your talents to make a difference in the world. If this is you, then entrepreneurism might be the calling you were born to pursue. However, if you are looking to make a living, you should consider developing a business case to prove the value of your proposed marketing activities. This way, when you are asking for funding or pitching your product to potential clients, you can refer back to this case and show how your marketing efforts have resulted in concrete, quantifiable results.
Do some research.
If you want to put yourself in the best possible position to land the job you want, you need to do the research beforehand. To start, conduct some keyword searches on popular job-searching websites to see how others are describing the roles and responsibilities of a marketer. From here, you can tailor your search to get an idea of what kinds of jobs are available and the essential skills you need to get the job.
Don’t be afraid to flex your resume.
When you are applying for jobs, you will inevitably be asked to submit your resume. Though it is important to keep your resume up-to-date and show the most relevant skills, you should not be afraid to add or subtract jobs from your resume as needed. If you are applying for a marketing job and previously worked as a marketing coordinator for X company, but X company has changed their name to Y Company and you have a lot of experience at the latter, then you might want to edit your resume to include the former. Though it is essential to be authentic, it is also important to be consistent.
Knowing how to market is not about being able to max out a credit card and buy ads on social media. This is probably the case for many people who think they know how to market, but in reality, they are just doing what they know. The real art of marketing lies in crafting unique strategies for each customer and industry segment, as well as using a variety of channels to reach your audience.