5 Things I Know About Marketing
In this series, we ask MSI marketing leaders to share some of their core beliefs about marketing.
1. Overestimating rationality is a mistake.
2. Strong brands are a reward, not a goal. They are what you get for doing everything right other than trying to have a strong brand.
3. In business as in warfare, what passes for strategy is often luck or superior force, whatever professors in military academies and business schools may say.
4. Marketers underprice. Their restraint may be marketing’s greatest contribution to consumer welfare.
5. Advertising (moving images, sound and plot) is the most powerful rhetorical force of all. Digital interactivity pales by comparison.
Marketing is a world populated by major blank spaces. The willingness and skill to imagine what is missing is what generates big insights. This is how visionaries lead. They see data not as goal lines but as springboards for thinking and planning.
Good marketing is a long-term play. It requires finding the right customers and doing things that meet their needs. If you’re doing those two things you’re well on your way to capturing value for your company.
Only about 7% of word of mouth is online. Most is face to face. Harnessing word of mouth, then, requires more than just a social media strategy; you need to think about where your customers are.
If consumers often make incorrect predictions about their future preferences, how can we, as marketing researchers, predict their preferences? It’s critical to choose the right research method to answer the question we want to answer.
It is really easy to get swept up with marketing to the customers at the top of the pyramid and ignore the needs of those at the base in the process. Both matter, but they need to be marketed to differently.
Particularly for marketers, we need to continually push beyond product features and ask: What can our customers accomplish with our product or service?
The wonderful quality of marketing is that it is based on the successful blending of art and science.
Everything consumers do is based on their perceptions. It's striking how powerfully you can change behavior based on just changing perceptions.
Gavan Fitzsimons, Duke University
Brands are incredibly powerful in the life of a modern-day consumer, more so than most of us realize.
The product experience is your most important investment. Make it so special and so wonderful that people will want to have that experience again.
Start with the stuff that matters: the product and the larger experience around that product. That is where you should be focusing the majority of your time.
The need to be closer to your consumer—your shopper—is greater, because everything is changing. There is no easy growth out there.
As brand managers and branding researchers, we put brands at the center of our thoughts and activities and in doing that, we lose perspective...Every brand manager thinks that their brand plays or could play a big role in people’s lives. That is not—and simply cannot be—the case!
I see so much pressure on marketers these days to be in touch with “each and every consumer” individually via technology. Brands can and should inform their consumers in various ways, but also realize they ultimately want to make their purchase decisions on their own.
The ability to see in almost real time how tuning something can make a difference in how a customer responds and transacts—that is the most revolutionary thing I can imagine happening in marketing!
I have devoted a good deal of my career to evaluating television programs, using all the tools at my disposal to inform my management as to whether or not a television show will be successful… But with all that, I could not write a successful situation comedy.