Why You’re Constantly Defending Your Marketing Expertise

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defending marketing expertise shield

If you’re a marketer, your marketing expertise is likely challenged daily. Marketing today is hard. Convincing teams around you about your marketing prowess is harder.

I saw a quote on this topic on Twitter that was absolutely fitting …

 “If architecture worked the way advertising does, you’d spend the first half of every meeting arguing the existence of gravity.”

Are there other professions where you have to constantly defend your expertise or is it just marketing? Sigh.

Classical Marketing Is Challenged

First of all, marketing itself is challenged. This is why marketers are facing pushback with their marketing expertise.

Recently, Mark Schaefer and I had the pleasure of interviewing the CMO of Mastercard for the Marketing Companion, Raja Rajamannar. His new book is  called Quantum Marketing.

The premise of the book is that because the world is changing at an unprecedented speed and there is disruption everywhere, every aspect of classical marketing is being thwarted.

Most importantly, we are now in the era of the Connected Consumer. We are always on and always distracted. We’ve moved away from many right-brained marketing tasks and so much of what we marketers do is now steeped in left-brained activities.

Thus, science is why your marketing expertise is being questioned.

Marketing With Data & Science

For example, bots and algorithms are why your marketing expertise is being challenged.

In other words, old-fashioned “gut” marketing is being replaced by algorithms that determine how and where your money is best spent. They are cheaper and faster than people. Their effectiveness cannot be disputed.

Most marketers say they are “data-driven” or that their efforts are “powered by AI.” But much of that seems to be smoke in mirrors. When the CEO comes asking for the bottom line of what marketing has contributed, if real results aren’t given, trust in marketing is lost.

And that’s my take on why our marketing expertise is constantly being questioned; many of us aren’t data-driven enough to prove return on investment of our efforts.

Other Marketing Expertise Failures

Before all of my marketing friends come after me for this post, I think there are other reasons our marketing expertise is constantly called to the carpet.

In my experience, many brands fail to understand our limitations. If there’s not enough budget, or emphasis on “return on conversation” (a soft return), or the super niche target audience isn’t big enough to remarket to … these are all instances where I’ve seen marketing expertise come into question.

And which is part of why we wrote this post on advertising expectations.

We send weekly automated reports plus a monthly “big mama jamma” – but guess what? The cadence and recurrence of client-requested reports has increased drastically over the past two years.

If we’re constantly being asked to join client calls and “show” the ROI, how much time do you think we have to actually set up those campaigns for success and ROI?

You may be an unrealistic client if …

  • You don’t know what you want but you’ll “know it when you see it”
  • Results are expected in 90 days or less
  • The scope of work is constantly being pushed beyond what’s stated
  • You don’t understand that social media and advertising platforms are changing DAILY (and therefore require constant relearning and training)
  • Immediate turnaround times are expected

Finally, with so much emphasis put on the data, so little faith is invested into the discovery, research, and set-up. C-suites want to rush to the end of something that takes an extraordinary amount of time to do correctly.

Wear Your Marketing Expertise Proudly

Lastly, I encourage you to wear your marketing expertise like a crown. You’ll continued to be questioned and challenged like crazy.

One way to combat this is to truly become a more data-driven marketer. If you are able to show the CEO and other teams the results of your efforts, you’ll end up in combat less.

Additionally, make sure you or someone on your marketing team is a data scientist. You may also want someone who is immersed in technology like programmatic advertising, AI, AR/VR, etc. – whatever makes the most sense for your products and services.

The marketing space will continue to get disrupted, deconstructed, and devalued. That doesn’t mean you can’t use your marketing prowess to pivot and stay relevant!

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Brooke B. Sellas is an award-winning Customer Marketing Strategist and the CEO & Founder of B Squared Media. Her book, Conversations That Connect has been recognized nationally and is required reading for a Customer Experience class at NSU. Brooke's influence in digital marketing is not just about her accomplishments but also about her unwavering commitment to elevating the industry standard of digital customer experience and customer marketing.
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Category: Digital Marketing, Marketing
Tags: AI, artificial intelligence, connected consumer, data-driven marketing, marketing, marketing expertise, marketing professionals
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