I’ve been doing marketing and content creation for a number of years and recently had a discussion with Craig Sabina of Summit Projects about experience that comes with well, experience, or as some would call it age. When I’ve had surgery, I have been pretty happy to have someone that looked like they’d been around the block a few times looking down at me as I went out.
There are some things, like the basics principles of marketing (ROI, KPIs etc.), where you want a person that actually knows how to deliver because they have done it for real not in an MBA or MFA environment where it is pure simulation and there’s no skin in the game (read REAL money). Enthusiasm is critical in both cases btw, but enthusiasm untethered is often an ego that feels it’s crashed landed on the island of the dumb and it’s here to save us.
However, creative when guided toward a business goal is a beautiful thing. Creative when it’s unguided by business and is in pursuit of the NEXT cool thing isn’t marketing usually but something akin to the horse designed by a committee, or bad art. I can say this with some confidence having been a group creative director at one point in my “experience”.
This isn’t an indictment of creative or new eyes on old problems, but an argument for balance. Yin AND Yang. Because business for all it’s ups and downs, purpose driven or even NonProfit, has to bring in money or it isn’t in business any longer. So while the new, new thing may catch the customer’s eye, it’s best in the marketing world if that eye is attached to a hand that’s reaching for a wallet. And seeing how to make those connections happen, is what experience brings to the table.
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