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Dear Marketer, It’s a Hard Knock Life!


When was the last time you checked your TV and looked at what’s going on over there for more than 20 minutes without even checking your phone?

I’ve heard a lot about the future of the second screen and how important mobile will be in the future. Well, guess what? The future is now and the mobile is far more significant  than the TV in your dining room.

Why? Think about how many times you check your mobile phone while you are at work. Think about the moments you are outside and the people around you are checking their phones, having conversations and taking pictures.

It seems like now is the time for mobile to be in the spotlight!

So – we should stop talking about the future or the past. Let’s see the present has in store for us.

Because we, as marketers, must understand the culture in which we live. We should understand the behavior of a 14 years old girl takes  hundreds of pictures/week only to post them on a network from which they will disappear within 24 hours. We should understand the mom who subscribed to a YouTube channel that teaches her to cook a great meal for her husband.

Wait a minute! That means that a marketer’s job is more than just promoting a product, researching the industry or creating promotional projects to sell more and more, right? Exactly.

A marketer’s job is to learn and grow every day, to change from one new feature release to another, to understand and adapt.

So, what exactly is a marketer’s job today?

There is no exact job description today, because, as I see it, it’s more than just a role. I believe that working in marketing is a way of life. If you love what you do, it is part of your life.

Think about the marketer who goes shopping. He looks around, listens to the music that is playing, pays attention to what specific smell he feels, how kind the seller is, what font they use for pricing, if people can pay by card and other little things that many people won’t understand.

And sometimes I feel exactly the same. Just by looking around me I can see how they use marketing to help visitors have a better experience. And sometimes I get in trouble just by taking too much time with the salesgirl, asking her questions that nobody would ask it.

I believe that the marketing industry needs more curious marketers who are bold enough to experiment new strategies, fail and identify what’s worthy and what’s not.

Marketers are here to help

Helping – not in the job description and cannot be monetized. You, as a marketer, should be a helper. You should help customers have a better experience with your product. You should help the sales team sell more of your product. You should help the PR to get where they want to. You should help yourself.

You are here to help.

And this role can’t be monetized. This role can’t be used in some HR strategies to manage whether you’ve done your work or not. It’s a must have in the marketer’s native behavior. Take designers for example. You can’t critique a designer if he/she will take a pause and start reading some magazines or just browse Pinterest or Behance while at work. Why? Because this is what they do to get inspired, to work better and to create something unique and beautiful for the brand.

Marketers are the same. They are helpers.

Time is the biggest enemy

Marketers must earn attention. They need those reaches and engagements on social media. They need to measure how much time  the customer spent on their social media channels, with their product, while experiencing the product.

And time is the biggest enemy. When you don’t know how to create content, make something interesting for your customers to catch their attention  you will see how fast time will go away and… that’s it. Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow will come but today is today and you, as a marketer, need to take action.

Competition is bigger than before

What’s your biggest competition?

Think about the brand you are working for and draw 4 columns.

In one column write down your brand. In the second column write down all the brands that are represent your competition. In the third column you should write down the word “Time” and in the last one you should write all the friends, colleagues and relatives you know: father, mother, son, daughter, husband, wife, grandmother, grandfather, friend, colleagues, football team and the list can go on.

Now write the title with big bold letters – this is my competition!

Today’s competition is more than just another brand. Time is also your competition (remember what I just told you about time being your enemy?) but if you are a digital marketer or a social media marketer, your customer’s friends are also your competition!

In social media, your customer’s  friends are your brand’s competition!

Because you need to get the user into your timeline, into your brand’s conversation, into your brand’s content. And when your customer’s wife just posted a picture of their daughter’s at the ballet class, you have a problem. Why? Because family beats brands – always.

And here comes the research and understanding your customer’s behavior. So, when you have the honor to talk to your customer, try to found more about him or her and ask more than just some random marketing question that a call support will ask.


Watch / Learn / Adapt / Execute

I didn’t write these terms just to give you some positive energy. I wrote these terms to help you see what you should do with when it comes to your job in marketing.

  1. Watch – you should watch every time you have the opportunity. Use your marketing eyes and mind and see what’s going on behind you, ahead of you and all around you. Watch the trends. Watch the electoral presidency. Watch your beloved one’s behavior. Watch your friends at dinner.
  2. Learn – You can’t say that you understand everything around you. This is why you should learn how to use Snapchat. from teenagers. Learn how to create bridges between your brand and your customer.
  3. Adapt – If you want to do something special for your marketing strategy, then try to adapt. I don’t care if you don’t like Instagram or Pinterest. If your audience is ther, you should start using it too. I don’t care if you don’t know how to do Facebook Lives. If it’s good for your brand, then try to adapt and learn.
  4. Execute – Do you want to be 1 in a million? Then execute the great idea you just had while reading my article (I hope so). Execute the idea you talked about with your colleagues. It doesn’t matter if it will take you more time to work on, it doesn’t matter if you fail. Why? Because you have gained more experience than the ones just talking about a great idea.

The difference between a good idea and a great idea is the execution.

In conclusion, I just want to let you know that we, as marketers, have a great job and we need to love and make the best out of it for 2 reasons: because we are working in this industry and maybe this is the only reason we need, but also for the tomorrow’s marketing generation.

They will come after us and they need practicing leaders who will help them create better products, brands, world and life!

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Robert Katai

Visual Marketer and Content Strategist

"Content isn’t king. Usefulness is. Robert does this in the online marketing and social media space with ease."

Ram Castillo

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