In the last couple of weeks, I've had two similar conversations with my portfolio companies. They were just starting to build out their marketing strategy and they were faced with the challenge of how to staff it. Do you hire someone senior who might feel like the execution of the work was beneath them--or who simply hadn't done it in a while? Or, do you hire someone adept at the actual creation piece, but who needed guidance around how things were strategically put together at a high level?
We had opted to create the high level strategy as a board--since no one knew the companies and their customers better than those that created it and invested in it. What we realized was that we were in a search for consistency. What would be the common thread across all of these available channels?
What we needed was an atomic element of our marketing. What was it that we actually wanted our marketing to do or to show? Do we inspire? Do we tell stories? Do we help? Do we show off? Are we all about people?
If we're about people, than people need to be in every single piece of marketing collateral that we create. If we tell stories, than everything you see from us--from the TV ads to our packaging to our Instagram posts, will be stories, because that's what we do.
Once you figure out your atomic element, it becomes a lot easier to fit your brand message into various channels, because you know the vessel of delivery--the atomic element of your marketing.