Marketers: Do not center your marketing efforts on your competitor's marketing model
I was thinking the other day, how important it is that our client doesn't center their entire marketing strategy around their competitor's marketing model. Just because a competitor, for example, does some radio advertising doesn't mean radio advertising makes any sense for our client. The same applies to print materials, a web presence, social marketing, premiums, and everything else in the realm of marketing.
I say that because I think it is easy to lose sight of the fact that every organization is unique. That an organization's particular mix of products, services, expertise, experience, style, location, pricing, and so on, distinguishes if from any other organization on the planet.
Follow the leader marketing and mirror-the-competition tactics ignore that all-important fact. The best marketing approach (we all know) is one that is invented for one specific organization and its unique circumstances. Ideally, it even includes some elements that competitors are not using at all.
Our job as communication designer's is to discover and deliver unique solutions. Sure, there are smart, conventional approaches that work for most of the organizations you apply them to, but we shouldn't recommend and produce materials because that's the way we've always done it. I'm guessing "That's the way we've always done it," has killed as many businesses as any other single reason.
Do you want more clients and more work satisfaction? Use your talents and experience to devise a better approach. Dig into the market, find out what people are doing in other areas and see what might apply. Invent something new! I find clients are almost always open to dealing with the reality of the market and will experiment with you if you are able to make a compelling case for your idea.
A designer who has a wonderful sense of style and the technical expertise to create a compelling layout should maintain a pretty consistent work load. A designer who is an inventor and problem-solver will have to turn clients away.
Tell your client this: Every organization is unique-the sooner we identify your organization's unique advantages, the sooner we can begin telling the world about them.
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More about creating digital magazines for the iPad using InDesign http://ht.ly/2dKhh
Here come digital magazines for the iPad -- created with Adobe InDesign http://ht.ly/2dKe6
Lots of interesting new stuff from The Museum of Forgotten Art Supplies since my last visit... http://ht.ly/2bm7T
Tim Girvin is expert at balancing the expression of a stylistic point of view with practical marketing strategy... http://ht.ly/27SBJ
I remain in awe of the beauty, versatility, and staying power of the Apple site design... http://ht.ly/27jbp
Anyone know who designed it?
Interesting look at iPad and Kindle reading speeds http://ht.ly/26m6G
Here comes UPPERCASE Magazine, issue 6 http://ht.ly/2pTuV
Quotes on design
The design universe is expanding beyond my wildest expectations. While you might think the expansion would top out--it seems, instead, to be gaining speed. The exploration of design ideas has captured the collective imagination.
Chris Coyier is capturing snippets of past and present design thinking through QuotesonDesign.com.
A few, random examples:
"I think that the lack of drama in my life has produced a platform for me to be fundamentally adventurous in my thinking." Milton Glaser
"Good ideas turn into good designs fairly quickly. If you catch yourself fiddling too much with colors, borders, and treatments to bring a design together, chances are the problem lies somewhere deeper." Ryan Singer
"The difference between regulated architects and unregulated designer is, unlike buildings, letterheads don't fall down and kill people..." Brian Webb
Here > Quotes on Design...
Here > The curator of Quotes on Design is Chris Coyier, a banjo player (and the creator of...)
From the Ideabook.com Design Store
How to design better ideas
Time to stretch your brain. Meet inventor and artist Steven M. Johnson. While many of his ideas sound silly, Johnson offers a serious message about innovation--primarily that there is too little of it.
What I hear him saying is this: In an age when the barriers are fewer than ever before, it is disconcerting to think how many of us are willing to accept the same old solutions. Everyone has a capacity to innovate but few of us use it.
Makes you wonder how much better a place the world would be if we devoted as much time to learning how to generate, parse, and pursue positive ideas as we do in figuring out how to accumulate money.
Here > Allison Arieff's original piece on Johnson for the New York Times...
Here > Another, more recent article including an interview with Johnson...
Here > Johnson's own web page...
Meet illustrator Polly Becker
About the briefing
I try to remain as objective as possible about the information I share here. Unless otherwise stated, I receive no compensation from the organizations and people mentioned except for occasional product samples. Comments? Suggestions? Write me at firstname.lastname@example.org