The Lone Marketer: How to Balance Strategy and Execution in a Department of One

October 28, 2011 I was reminded today that when you attend any event:  the marketing of the event greatly impacts your actual experience at the event. And just as importantly, each participant applies their own personal lens to the event topic and greatly affects how they experience the event. Each of us hears words differently and through the lens of our own life. "The Lone Marketer:  How to Balance Strategy and Execution in a Department of One" event was marketed via e-mail as:

"From a panel of Sales and Marketing experts, attendees will learn:

  • Expert advice on how to make the time to think strategically but focus on the daily execution details
  • Best practice examples of making the balance easier
  • How to avoid common mistakes that undermine your success and leadership buy-in."
What struck me was that I read the description above and what stood out to me personally was "Best practice examples of making the balance easier" and I showed up looking for that.  Social scientists would tell you that we each pay attention most to what is relevant to us. In my stage of life, which would best be classified as insanely busy, this one component of the topic stood out as THE topic.  I applied personal blinders to the rest of the topic and initially felt frustration with the speakers. As I looked at the list of takeaways marketed, I did realize that the speakers covered all of these topics. Speaker Takeaways Christine Spray, CEO, Strategic Catalyst Christine focuses on enhancing profitability and launching marketing initiatives. She shared her perspective on how to achieve success in growing your business. If you ever need someone to help a rookie business development team learn business development marketing strategies; I can highly recommend Christine. Her business development and networking tactics were spot on. Important note on goals from Christine:  Identify what is the one thing that you can do that would be the biggest impact in your success? Write it down. Dreams are in your head; goals are written down. Craig Yoss, Director of Marketing and Business Development, R. Stahl, Inc. R Stahl makes switch products for oil and gas industry. Craig has the privilege of being the lone marketer there and immediately connected with the audience through a series of questions. His presentation focused on the key points for Lone Marketers:
  • How to not start overwhelmed
  • Start with the end in Mind — start with a strategy
  • Marketing is not an individual sport
  • Prioritize. Recognize that you can't do everything.
  • Challenge the norm. Do not follow everyone in your industry.
  • Sales Wish List — create it and note it.
Trevor Eade, MATCOR Tiaras make great tools to represent that good marketers wear many hats — since we rule our own universe. Trevor did not say this but his speech brought to mind, "sometimes that universe can be unruly so keeping your sense of humor is relevant." Herding cats is a responsibility of a lone marketer meaning you must do all the day-to-day marketing functions while ensuring that your plans fit within your corporate strategy. Trevor's statement for success:  Understand and immerse yourself in the industry that you are marketing so that you can become a leading voice — that is the only way you can write the blogs, organize the AdWords, and complete all the tactics. Bill Courtney, Director of Marketing, Rice University As the moderator for the event, Bill Courtney opened and closed with the reminder that integrated marketing planning requires addressing all points of touch which means lone marketers deserve an infinite amount of respect.

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