Dear Mark T. King: Our marketing elf Marquette has locked us out of our social media accounts, deleted findings from our audit, shredded our contact list, and added nonsensical messages into our content. And, above all, he has us paying him for the messes he keeps making. I am at my wit’s end and need your help. Is it worth even trying, or should we save money and stop marketing until he goes away? - A FRUSTRATED AND TIRED MARKETER
DEAR FRUSTRATED AND TIRED: You are not the first person to fall victim to Marquette’s antics, and something tells me that you won’t be the last. His behavior has made him rather infamous in the industry, and receiving so much attention has made him bold enough to go from messing with bits and pieces of marketing efforts to feeling confident enough to wreak havoc on entire strategies. He’s an elf on a mission who’s willing to do whatever it takes, even if it lands him on the naughty list.
With that in mind, the last thing you want to do is let him win, and that’s what you’ll be doing if you give up on marketing. You might think you’ll save money, but in actuality, you’ll lose more if you stop. Your marketing strategy is instrumental in helping increase your profits, grow your company, and form connections with potential clients.
No matter how much chaos Marquette causes, and there’s no denying that he’s created monumental mayhem across the industry, he’s far from being invincible. He has one weakness in particular that, when addressed properly, is what will let you escape his clutches.
So, what is this Achilles heel that will let you reclaim your marketing strategy and elevate your organization to the next level? It’s simple - Marquette approaches marketing the same way a lot of the general public does. He focuses on the how behind marketing and doesn’t take the time to dive deeper into the other components.
Marquette prioritizes creating trouble on marketing channels and interfering with the methods we use. By messing with our content and interfering with our social media, he's successfully caused a great deal of industry and business disruption. The unpredictable and unprecedented nature of the hurdles Marquette put in place this year has pushed every organization, small or large, to be creative in readjusting their strategies.
However, as every marketer knows, how we market has always been subject to change. Whether someone was a marketer years ago, is a marketer today, or may enter the field in the future, creativity and adaptability are vital skills for achieving success.
The act of marketing is always changing, but the practice of marketing is timeless. While Maquette can force marketers to think on their feet and have to readjust to different obstacles, his decision to ignore who forms your audience, what marketing is, or the why behind your strategy is what will lead to his trickery becoming a thought from the past.
At its core, marketing is a type of relationship that involves creating connections and fulfilling a human need. It’s a way to make dreams come true by creating something new, discovering untapped solutions, and overcoming seemingly unbeatable challenges. Sound familiar? This year hasn’t been easy, but it’s opened the door for possibilities to invent innovative marketing practices and reconnect with your audience at a new level.
So, has Marquette made a mess of things: certainly. Has he interfered with how you market: most definitely. But at the end of the day, what he cannot take away is what’s at the very heart of your marketing: the human audience you serve. If you embrace this weakness and refocus your strategy on your audience, you'll be amazed at what your marketing can overcome.