Marketing loses its cool

Tom Guarriello has a wonderfully irreverent post about marketing and the angst about monetising social networks. Here’s a snippet but read it all if you can.

OK. So keeping that as a backdrop I show up at today’s C-level restricted attendance session of the BRITE Conference. In the front of the room, several really smart people talking about very cool things. Lots of energy to create new ideas. Lots of exhortations to think big. Lots of buzzy references to all things social media.

And, what happened? No offense, but, big hat, no cattle.

None of the ideas generated from the floor wowed anybody. Nothing there was any more innovative than what’d you’d find in an afternoon in the blogosphere. It was obvious that some (several? many? most?) of the C-level marketing executives in attendance had never read a blog post. Probably never commented on one. Certainly never posted one.

Tom asks if marketing is a discipline in crisis. Well I can see a crisis for the marketing professionals, but not for us punters. Mrs Beeton, in her famous book, had a very different notion of marketing than the defaul definition today. Here’s her reference to it:

It will be one of the duties of the housekeeper to attend to the marketing, in the absence of either a house steward or man cook.

So for her, marketing was done by the purchaser, not the vendor, and not a high-status cleverclogs thing, but the business of getting a decent price.

IN MARKETING, THAT THE BEST ARTICLES ARE THE CHEAPEST, may be laid down as a rule

I love Tom’s post for it’s knocking of the high status of CMOs… and rather like the idea of marketing as a nice thing that we all get to do, and not a high-falutin’ thing done to us.

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