Marketer, Market Thyself!
What is the best product that many marketers appear to never want to market? It’s themselves!
Picture this, a CEO named Jesse hops into an elevator with a marketing manager named Jane. Recognizing her, Jesse says “Hi Jane. What’s new?”. Jane says “Not much” or talks about her new puppy. Either response is unlikely to impress Jesse although I am sure she would ask to see a picture of the puppy.
Now imagine instead that Jane says “You may have heard that we had a very successful product launch. We expect to beat our planned first year revenue by X%”. Jesse would undoubtedly be more impressed by this news and perhaps ask to learn more about it. When she does, Jane should be prepared to tell a brief impactful story.
So, what is the solution? I suggest that people be prepared to interview at any point. Much like networking, so many of us do not do it until absolutely necessary (otherwise known as needing a job). All it takes is a few moments to write up your latest success in a STAR response format when it is fresh in your memory. For more on that, see this recent post on STAR responses (Be A Star!).
In over a decade of marketing executive recruitment and during my prior marketing career, I have seen many exceptional marketers get passed over for promotion because they fail to promote themselves. Conversely, I have seen some marginal marketers promote themselves relentlessly. This includes one who tried to pass off a solution that I had created at a prior employer as his own. Suffice it to say, I did not present that candidate to my client.
To be clear, I am not talking about relentlessly bragging about yourself or fibbing about your accomplishments. I am merely stating that many times we miss opportunities like this simply because we are either too humble, too reserved or are just unprepared to tell our story. You need to think about yourself as the best product you have to promote. And taking credit for the successes you have had is smart career management.
In short, Marketer, Market Thyself!