I really suck at short term marketing

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Slackershot - Spare ChangeI had this sudden, painful flash of insight the other day: I really suck at short term marketing. By that, I mean that I don’t have the ability to generate meaningful results in marketing over a very short period of time with no base except a pile of money. When I look back at where my skill sets are, they all revolve around long term:

  • Social media
  • Search engine optimization
  • Email marketing
  • Marketing strategy

All of my skills come from my experience: working at companies that have more smarts, time, and talent than piles of money, growing organically. I don’t think I’ve ever worked for anyone that simply handed over a billion dollar marketing budget, nor have I ever done any kind of pure “brand building”, because I’ve always been held accountable for actual results in some measurable form.

The things that generate short term results with impact generally require a massive resource pile in order to make a lot of stuff happen very quickly, and my track record has been entirely at companies that do not have billion dollar marketing budgets.

I mention all of this because there is a place for short term marketing and long term marketing. Both are important, and both require very different talents. The question is, which type of marketing do you need?

An even better question is whether you are expecting short term results from long term marketing, or vice versa. Are you being asked for short term results but given the meager resources of long term, organic marketing? If so, you will be immensely frustrated. Are you sitting on a pile of resources allocated for short term marketing that you’re not using because of a long term strategy? If so, you’re squandering available resources.

If your expectations are a mismatch for the marketing capabilities you have, you will always be disappointed.

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3 responses to “I really suck at short term marketing”

  1. Most people suck at Short-Term Marketing, Chris… no reason to hang your head down.

    But most people shouldn’t even be THINKING about short-term marketing, they should be concentrating on building relationships so that when they send an email or post a blog, people will react to it.

    Blog posts, podcasts, and mostly video – they are your friend. Stay in touch with people.

    Charlie Seymour Jr

  2. Christopher:

    This is so true. Guy Kawasaki said “Use outbound marketing if you have more money than brains. If you have more brains than money, use inbound marketing.”

    The challenge is that most people/companies start to worry about marketing when they are at a crisis point in lead generation and/or sales. It is like camping — you are almost guaranteed to sleep in a puddle if don’t have your tent up before it starts raining.

    Great posting.


  3. Holy crap, I just realized all of my passion/knowledge is for long term marketing, but all the work I do seems to need short term marketing. Either way there is little to no money involved.

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