Tips to Help You Teach Your Boss About Marketing
Work can be a miserable place if you and your boss don’t get along well. You both may be great at small talk and exchanging social pleasantries, but discussing marketing strategies and goals? Not so much.
So what are you supposed to do when it's obvious your boss needs a little educating on the intricacies of marketing strategy? There are ways to handle such a situation that will help both you and your boss in the long run.
Approaching your Boss
Remember Alexander Pope’s observation, “Fools rush in…” How do you go about suggesting that your boss come out of the dark ages and take advantage of modern marketing strategies? Ask yourself a couple of things first:
1. Do you really want to have this conversation? Don’t storm the boss’s office when you’re frustrated or angry. Take a few breaths, think things over, and formulate your plan.
2. Who else should I involve in this? Are you the only one who notices the boss’s lack of marketing strategy chops? If not, can you bring a co-worker in for a second opinion? You can even bring in a marketing consultant to provide an outside perspective and to help support you.
3. What is your end game? Once you talk with your boss, how do you plan to move forward? Are you prepared to accept rejection if your advice and ideas fall flat?
Bringing the Boss Up to Speed
Once you’ve made the decision to educate your boss, the next step is to prepare for your meeting. Here’s where you get your ducks in a row. You’ll want more ammo than simply your talking points. Get your stats in order before meeting with the boss. But don’t bury him under a pile of numbers. Present the data in a context that aligns with the overall goals of the business.
When you talk to your boss, know exactly what you’re asking him to do. If improving your company’s marketing strategy means an investment in marketing software, for example, be sure to have materials on hand to prove the value of the investment cost. Then get in there and make your pitch.
Understanding your Marketing Strategies
If you’re trying to bring your boss into the second decade of the 21st century, you need to make certain you’re up-to-date on the latest marketing strategies. You’ll need to know which ones would work well with your company and fit its business model. Here are some of the current marketing strategies that are trending for 2017:
- Native advertising: This is best described as a “pay to play” sort of marketing. Brands pay to have their content placed on platforms outside their normal media outlets. This information is usually highly targeted to a specific audience.
- Content marketing: This strategy creates and distributes relevant information designed to appeal to a target audience. It's an ongoing process that works best when integrated into a broad overall marketing strategy.
- Customer experience: This is the heart of marketing, regardless of the industry.
- Effective analytics: Everyone has been talking data for years, but we’re learning that data alone doesn’t tell the whole story. Businesses are now looking at measurements and analytics with a purpose, tying business goals to such focal points as revenue and profit, customer retention and satisfaction.
- Think video, then add more video: Consider live-streaming video on your website or social media page. Invest in visual storytelling to immediately connect with customers. You can convey emotion and your message much more memorably than through mere static words.
- Chatbots: These are game-changers. They offer you 24-hour engagement with consumers. Artificial intelligence and programming let chatbots answer consumers’ questions.
There you have it. Decide if you want to educate your boss, then plan your strategy. Finally, make sure the strategy you want to implement is the best fit for your business model. Then, go for it!