I suggested that there are three steps marketers can take to raise their profile, credibility and effectiveness. Step 1 called on them to Fight The Fluff.
In Step 2, I’m suggesting that marketers should Manage the Magpie.Some are afflicted by the desire for the latest shiny new thing, whether it’s the latest technology gadget, social media platform or marketing technique. With advances in technology disrupting many traditional business models, there’s no doubt it’s an incredibly exciting time to be in business, never mind marketing.
Yet for many, this excitement causes a common sense bypass! Some are blinded by the brightness of the new thing, whilst others jump onto the ‘me too’ bandwagon to seek the reassurance that if other/bigger/more interesting brands are doing something, so should we.
Expectations and excitement skyrocket as early successes from case studies (most likely from outside your sector and country, but don’t let details like that get in the way) start to emerge as ‘proof’ that the cynical doubters are wrong. But of course what goes up must come down and when the glitter fades and the post-hysteria hangover kicks in, you wake up in what Gartner call the ‘trough of disillusionment’.
Which is why, more than ever before, marketers need to be better at managing the magpie within themselves and others. They should make a focused, objective and dispassionate assessment before leaping in. Yes be curious. Absolutely be alert to changing trends. But always be asking ‘how will this improve the customer experience’.
To put an objective structure around your thinking, try the following
- build an informal, cross-functional group from sales, marketing and operations so that you can draw upon the wider experience in the business when a shiny new thing comes along
- get them to help you define at least three ways in which it will measurably improve the customer experience.
- the harder you find this, the easier the decision not to jump on
Do you look before you leap onto the latest shiny new bandwagon? How do you decide which new technologies to adopt and at what speed? Or maybe you work for a magpie and have some coping mechanisms to share here?