Is marketing really that complicated?

Yep, that is what we said – is marketing really that complicated? Or do those in marketing spread a smoke and mirrors pitch to essentially make a logical and simple concept sexy and just a bit unobtainable?  Having read through the bullshit, we have concluded that marketing means the following:

  • Pick out who your target is, in a clear, defined and specific way.
  • Research that market’s actual needs, instead of your guesstimate of their needs.
  • Plan what resources are needed to execute a communications strategy that will let that audience know you have what they need.
  • Then deliver your products and services in an engaging and rapport-building manner.

Simple… OK, so why does marketing fail then?

Well, in the recruitment space, in which I have been involved since 1993 and training 10,000 plus recruiters before moving to what I do now,  I can offer the following:-

Step one: Pick out who your target is, in a clear, defined and specific way.

OK, if I had a pound for every time I saw a recruiter hired into a firm and given a niche market to follow and a target for fees to bring in from that desk based upon a desire to earn that money rather than the market being able to support that income, I would have quite a few hundred thousand banked by now.  For example, at one time there were so many legal recruiters the 16,000 practising solicitors would have had to be changing jobs daily to support the number of legal recruitment desks.

You need to be clear and specific about your niche, then move on to step 2.

Step two: Research that market’s actual needs, instead of your guesstimate of their needs.

We all make mistakes. I have made plenty.  Like I launched a CV spidering service just in time for the market to turn, and recruiters needed jobs more than candidates.  Lord Sugar is all about the focus groups and what they feed back to you.  No good heading into search if your client wants interims – might sound simple, but again, I have seen perm desks set up for niches where market demand was 99% contract.  Hard to make your desk cover its costs in a 1% market, with 3000 recruiters to compete with.

Step three: Plan what resources are needed to execute a communications strategy that will let that audience know you have what they need.

Make a plan for breaking new markets or expanding your market.  Then give that budget a plan and test the sources/services.  For example, we see many times now that you could spend the same on a job board advert as you could in, say, a Google Adwords promotion for a job.  Both methods have their pros and cons, but you need to really know what they are by testing the market.  Testing costs money – keep that in mind.  Good testing makes you a very healthy return, no testing will lose you money every time.

Step four: Then deliver your products and services in an engaging and rapport-building manner.

The best marketing is the one your clients and candidates do for you. If your service is excellent, then the word will spread. With social media, if your service is crap, it will spread even faster.

Please note I am Dyslexic, and in my form, I am blind to grammar, and sometimes I get my fors and fours, etc. backwards.  I am not stupid – in fact, my IQ and EQ are both quite high.  Please keep that in mind when you read my blogs.  Thanks.  You too, Google.

Darren Revell
Co-founder, RecruitWise Technology