I just finished Paul Roetzer's outstanding new book, The Marketing Performance Blueprint, so I thought I might offer some thoughts inspired by the book mixed with my own perspectives on where we are going in marketing as a whole. First, let me say Paul has done a great job of detailing the challenges facing marketing executives and solutions that are available today. If you are a decision maker for your company or looking to influence your decision makers about your marketing strategy and plans, you need to read Paul's book. Get it here.
If I may be so bold (and simplistic) as to attempt to boil down the essence of The Marketing Performance Blueprint, it's this:
Business stakeholders aren't satisfied with vanity metrics and buzz from their marketers anymore. They expect proven, quantitative results that translate into meeting revenue-driven goals. Modern marketers must adapt to this new paradigm or die trying.
To meet this challenge, marketing executives must transform their own knowledge of modern marketing technology and best practices and leverage that knowledge to build highly skilled teams of specialists in strategy, content, design and information technology all working together to achieve specific goals. The impact of this on marketing organizations is dramatic:
The value Paul brings to the table is many years of heading up one of the most successful inbound marketing agencies, PR2020, and working with many clients who have these challenges to help solve them. He and his team have been practicing what they preach, and they know the pitfalls of inbound marketing as well as the inside story. There are tons of practical tips for marketers who already "get it" as well as those who are looking for a new vision. This is the most up-to-date compendium of technical advice on marketing that I'm aware of.
Having worked with many marketing executives in both large and small companies myself, I can see how this book could be viewed as threatening to their livelihood. After all, most companies that contact inbound marketing agencies are at least aware of the general challenges—how to plot a course through the rapidly changing waters of digital marketing, for example. I'm sure it's worth it to them to get an idea of how deep and wide the gulf is between their own programs and a really well oiled marketing machine, but it's scary nonetheless.
For me, I would have enjoyed more of storytelling approach, rich with recent examples of how leading edge marketers are "killing it" on the performance front. I realize that's hard to do when many of those stories come from your own client base that would prefer to keep things on the QT. Armed with more stories and less of a "blueprint", they might be better enabled to promote the idea of transformation from within.
That's my only criticism of The Marketing Performance Blueprint. I can hear Paul now saying, "John, go for it, tell those stories." Working on that... For now, go get yourself a copy of Paul's book, and enjoy it. It's a masterpiece in our industry.