Bad Advice, Part 4

 

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Ann Gynn over at Content Marketing Institute put together a collection of 38 Experts [Sharing] the Worst Content Marketing Advice. I’m taking a few days to explain to non-markets why the advice is bad (and it really is).

Write and distribute first

My pet peeve is when people are told to start with their tactics and channels. How can you know HOW and WHERE before you know WHO and WHAT? – Michael Weiss, vice president, Creative Circle

Oh my word… YES.

Referring back to the bad client I had earlier in the year, after 3 weeks of pulling teeth to get access and information so I could write a marketing plan, it blew up.  After they listed to me working with several media outlets (with which I have long-standing relationships), to establish a target market for their new product, the business owner said “That’s not our market”.   Utterly confused–because that is their market, I threw up my hands and asked “What is your target demographic?”   The response was “Everyone.  My target demographic is ‘all adults’.”

Thus ended the relationship.

Before you can start building a relationship with your customers, you need to know who you’re speaking to.  You need to know their wants, their needs, and their expectations.  At the beginning, this comes from demographic data–the broadest look at who your customers are.  As you pursue your marketing plan, and begin to engage your audience, you’ll learn more—directly from your customers.  That information–from observation and feedback–will get rolled back into your marketing efforts to tweak and refine your message and approach.

Figure out who you’re speaking with before you start speaking.

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