This month, I have been asked to share my experience as a marketeer working in start-ups and big corporations. Over the last fifteen years, I have been working in a myriad of marketing departments, both in local and global roles. These roles have ranged from brand to product management all the way to innovation strategy.
Though each of my past roles has been unique, there has been a set of transferrable skills which I believe any marketeer needs to hone, which I am sharing with you today. But above all, a great marketeer is a storyteller who wants to spark joy in their consumer’s life.
Here we go…
First: walk in your consumer’s shoes.
To be a great marketeer, you must love and understand your audience.
Put yourself in your consumer’s shoes at all times. For example, when designing a product or a service, ask yourself ‘what would they think/ say’ or ‘what would they do if…’.
It should always start with your consumer’s:
- Pain points: these are the issues faced by consumers, either emotional or physical.
- Current solutions: tools used by consumers to solve their problems and their limitations.
- Gains: the benefits sought by consumers, which can be physical and emotional.
- Journey: the different touchpoints consumers take from collating information all the way to the product purchase.
Get out of your comfort zone and try to connect with your audience as often as you can. For example, attend tests organised by internal market insight teams, read competitor products’ consumer reviews or even join industry forums.
To be unmissable to their consumers, a marketeer must understand today’s consumer as well as tomorrow’s.
Second: be in love with your industry.
It all starts with excellent business acumen.
Understand your competitors, their offerings and weaknesses. Read about your industry’s history, learn from macro and micro trends to distinguish marketing fads to lasting shifts where growth opportunities might lie. Know your industry like the back of your hand to make informed decisions and stay ahead of the game.
Join industry networks on LinkedIn or Slack, subscribe to competitors’ newsletters and attend professional events. Follow trusted sources on Instagram or even Club House and subscribe to leading podcasts for bit size and insightful content.
Organising virtual safaris for your team to know your consumer’s shopping environment, the latest market releases and competitors’ products.
Educate yourself about the industry, over and over again.
Third: be comfortable to be at the centre of the action.
A strong marketeer is often a great project manager who constantly juggles timelines, challenges and stakeholders. Needless to say, multi-tasking is part of the job description which is bliss for all-rounders and people with a growth mindset.
One of my personal favourites is learning from different individuals as you constantly work in cross-functional teams. One gets exposed to considerable expertise: R&D, sales, packaging design, market insights, supply chain… you name it.
Last but not least, working in a marketing department requires that one adapts one’s communication style making the most agile individuals both great networkers and peacekeepers.
And today, I will finish with a quote by the great Steve Jobs, master of all things marketing: “Marketing is about values.”
This blog contribution was made by Gaelle Couberes.
Gaelle is originally from France though a Londoner at heart, who believes in the power of sisterhood, championing diversity, inclusion and mental health. Gaelle works in the beauty industry as a Senior Innovation Manager, taking pride in being a content creator and a mentor.
In 2020, Gaelle became a mentor for the LMF mentoring programme and in 2021 is crafting content for the blog.
Stay tuned for her regular blogs in English and French.
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