Are You a Content Rocker or a Content Blocker?

As I tour the country with my Content Marketing Boot Camp, I meet a lot of highly frustrated marketers. They are generally an unhappy lot because YOU don’t trust them and as a result they are failing in their role.

I struggle to comprehend why any organization would invest in a talented, creative and hungry marketing team and then block their every move by insisting a senior member of the team (outside of marketing) approves and even edits any content before it leaves the confines of the office.

Why You Shouldn’t Get In The Way of Your Marketing Team

  • Managing Director/CEO – Have you got the time to think about every single blog post, email marketing campaign or social media comment? No I didn’t think so. If you insist on signing off every single piece of content before it is released, or worse still – insist on making changes to the copy because it doesn’t sound like something YOU would say, then YOU are the reason why your campaigns are being delayed and ultimately failing.
  • Sales Directors/Managers – Great salespeople generally do not make great marketers. Whenever I see a lengthy, intrusive form on a website (asking for everything from company size and turnover to whether or not the person completing the form out is going to make a buying decision in the next 30 days), I know that a salesperson is behind it. Make no mistake – these long forms will prevent just as many hot prospects from completing them correctly as tire kickers. Marketing is not just about creating quick wins for a hungry sales department focused on closing deals before the quarter is out. It’s about positioning, brand, reputation and building long term relationships with prospects and influencers. Yes – marketing needs to feed sales but it is not the be-all and end-all.
  • IT/MIS Directors/Managers – Although a large percentage of marketing now takes place online, this does not mean that IT/MIS should have any influence over the output of the marketing department other than providing them with the tools to do their job. I recently met a marketer who told me that she was unable to use Twitter (perhaps one of the most powerful tools available to marketers) because the IT Director had blocked it from the company network and had advised the wider Senior Leadership Team that he perceived it as a risk.
  • The Weekly Marketing Meeting – Nothing useful has ever been designed by a committee. When marketers are forced to share their entire strategies and accept input from non-marketers their campaigns become compromised. Great marketers are already good listeners – trust them to seek out the best solutions and don’t throw them to the lions to have their best ideas torn to shreds.

I understand that many business owners want to protect their businesses. But just as a parent wants to protect their offspring, they must learn to trust others if they want their offspring grow up to be healthy and happy. It’s time to give your marketers the freedom to succeed or fail. You hired them because you believe them to be smart, creative individuals. Let them prove this assumption to be true.

I once worked for an individual who claimed he gave his staff enough rope to hand themselves but in reality kept his marketers gagged and bound. If you have given them enough rope to hang themselves, you might be pleasantly surprised that they actually use it to rope in some new customers.

The next Content Marketing Boot Camp will be held in Birmingham on March 7th, 2013. Use the discount code “Business2Community” to save £20 on entrance.

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