Great marketers have a solution not just the problem

The old saying ‘Everyone is a critic” is very true of the marketing world. Because so much of it is based around opinion (and that’s still true even with a lot of data behind you), ideas and concepts put forward will often be judged and analysed by other team members very subjectively.

In these circumstances I believe highlighting a problem is easy, coming up with the solution is what makes a great marketer.

An over looked, but essential, skill

Reading various articles about how to be an effective marketer, no one mentions the ability to provide feedback on other people’s ideas, and I think that is one of the most important aspects of marketing, and certainly one when working in a team.

Whilst feedback and other people’s opinions are an important part of the process, they can also slow things down to a frustrating pace if the focus is on what i wrong ow what needs to be improved, with no insight in to how. This usually occurs when they identify what they don’t like, but not what they’d like to see in its place.

Great marketers can go further

What makes great marketers stand out is not just the ability to critique or identify a problem, but the ability to present the solution as well.

  • An idea for an alternative to the image being used not just that you don’t like it
  • What the headline should be changed to not just that it doesn’t sound right
  • Which USPs should we focus on and in what order not just it doesn’t sell it to me
  • How much we should budget for that activity not just it sounds expensive
  • Which website(s) we should advertise on not just those aren’t the right audience
  • What price promotion we should be running not just that doesn’t sound very attractive

This type of marketer‘s brain does not just see something that they don’t like, they see how it can be improved.  They are also able to articulate that change in a defined manner for someone to act upon.

Learned or instinct?

Is this something can be learned or does it come naturally? The truth is I don’t know. I suppose the first step is to be self-aware enough to know you can’t do it before you can change (or be told, but who ever responds well to that?), and there are very few people who think like that.

Go beyond “I don’t like it” and become great

It is easy to say you don’t like something or you don’t think it will work, but what should you be doing instead. Marketers armed with that kind of thinking are the ones you make truly great campaigns.


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