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December 3, 2014
Marketers Shooting Themselves in the Foot?
 
Why is an occupation that is so needed so scrutinized?

Perhaps people know that marketing is needed and have no real idea what marketers really do. In fact, the Google Primer app is so watered down in terms of Marketing 101 that we paused from introducing it to our high school students because we thought they would find it insulting.

But maybe not.

According to an article that appeared in Marketing magazine and Brand Republic, marketers need to do a better job at showcasing their value inside the business, or to the client, so they recognize the C-Suite qualities a good marketer should have,

As we've been showcasing these past couple of days, why isn't it this common knowledge? Perhaps we are seeing the severe disconnect between academia and the professional world. Of course marketing should be the first in line in the C-suite progression. Marketing folks are the people who should understand the vision and mission of the company. The marketing department is the group that develops the messaging and the talking points the brand plans to represent. The marketing is the first image of the brand or product that the consumer sees. If the brand does not actively engage in public relations (which would be an error), the marketing department would engage with the press in order to foster positive good will and maintain a strong image within the communities that the brand's audience thrives in.

When marketing creates, improves, and maintains the image and welfare of the company, and the finance and operations folks can stay where they are, why shouldn't the marketing personnel be in the C-Suite? Marketing should continually have a spot.

In the article, the marketer-turned-CEO believes that marketers still put on the image that they don't care where the money is spent. 

Again, this is a wild generalization. Not caring where the money is spent versus the difficulty of proving the return on investment of an advertisement and the conversion into sales are two distinctly different arguments. The former refers to methods of putting messages out as quickly as possible, as artfully as possible. The latter deals with forming efficient campaigns and learning the right tools to prove that those tools are actually turning eyeballs into customers.

How interesting is it that marketing people continue to suck as their own advocates?

Truth be told, there are plenty of marketers who couldn't care less about where the money they are spending is going. At least, they'd better be around, because this conversation about the lack of financial prowess in marketing is becoming nauseating. Marketers well know that it takes money to make money, and it takes investment to get innovation, and if marketing professionals are the only ones to know that, maybe more marketing professionals should be CEOs.

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Dwayne W. Waite Jr. is partner and principal at JDW: The Charlotte Agency, a marketing and advertising shop in Charlotte, NC. He enjoys consumer behavior, economics, and football.
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