“Marketing is a game of mental warfare. It’s a battle of perceptions, not products or services…There is no objective reality. There are no facts. There are no best products. All that exists in the world of marketing are perceptions in the minds of the customer or prospect. The perception is the reality. Everything else is an illusion.” – Al Ries and Jack Trout, in The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing
Marketing is a fascinating and important discipline, with applicability far beyond simply selling a “traditional” product or service:
- when you’re seeking a new job, you’re engaged in marketing because you’re advertising a product (in this case, yourself) to a target market (prospective employers)
- if you want to be an effective leader, then you must appreciate the importance of marketing so that you can tailor the product (your message) to your target market (your followers)
- when you’re on the dating scene, you’re engaged in an extensive marketing exercise, competing for attention in a crowded market
As a marketing professional, I have a certain obligation to – and obviously stand to benefit from – constantly improve my own knowledge of the subject. However, my interest in marketing is genuine, and led me to steer my career in this direction, rather than the other way around.
Many organizations, particularly those driven by the engineering department or by a technology-focused leader, underestimate the importance of marketing or overlook it entirely.
They equate “marketing” with “advertising”, and wholeheartedly believe the better mousetrap adage. Later, when they’re closing their doors for the final time, the leaders will scratch their heads and wonder why a product so obviously superior failed so miserably. Ultimately, a failure to understand the marketplace and an ignorance of customer perception all but guaranteed the outcome.
I will do all that I can to ensure that any organization of which I am a part, and the organizations of which any readers of this site are a part, both truly appreciate the crucial role played by marketing and have the skills and knowledge to make marketing an area of strength.
To that end, you’ll find on this site a variety of posts. Some are simply me presenting my own knowledge, based on personal experience. Others will showcase the knowledge of friends, colleagues, and industry thought leaders, whether gained through conversation, conferences, or participation in local peer-to-peer groups. Additionally, you’ll see all sorts of “book reports” on the site; many of these deal with marketing books.
In any case, I hope you find these posts and pages useful as you look to extend your own knowledge of marketing.
- The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing
- Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind – How to be seen and heard in the overcrowded marketplace
- The Age of Persuasion: How Marketing Ate Our Culture
- Brandwashed: Tricks Companies Use to Manipulate Our Minds and Persuade Us to Buy
- Priceless: The Hidden Psychology of Value
- …and you could do far worse than checking out Pragmatic Marketing