The Soda Academy

Introduction to Modern Marketer

Over the past few years, the level of complexity faced by marketers has increased exponentially.  As the ground relentlessly shifts beneath our feet, we’re faced with an unending barrage of questions. What trends should we be following? What trends should we ignore? What new platforms do we need to be on? What skills do we need to develop in order to remain competitive? What value does __ (insert marketing tactic) produce for the organization? Basically, what are the right things to invest in and what are the wrong ones?

In the early days of any innovation cycle, first movers who make the right bets get out front. Those who make bad bets fall behind. Meanwhile, the vast majority hang around and wait for some degree of clarity before proceeding. They forfeit the first-mover advantage, but also avoid the risk of imprudent early adoption.  

In many areas of digital marketing, trends have reached a certain maturation point.  For example, the value of social, content marketing and data science are well established. Now, getting ahead of the competition in these areas comes down to the “how.”  One thing is certain. Marketers who deploy the right approaches will get to the best outcomes with greater speed and accuracy.  

At our company, we’ve identified a few tenets that work well for us as we navigate this constantly changing landscape. Things like:

  • Talent: Make sure you have the right team members for the task at hand.   Native practitioners are infinitely more valuable than intellectual observers.
  • Agility: Be agile and iterative in all facets of what you do and how you do it.  For us, making 10 small decisions every single day vs. one big decision at the end of a long process has proven to be invaluable.
  • Collaboration: Be leery of the “precious idea.” Nothing is sacred and every idea needs to stand up to interrogation. We build ideas as teams and we embrace them (or leave them behind) as quickly as we can.

Principles such as these are important because they help us focus on the things that matter most right now. They inform our processes, techniques, plans and approaches.

In this edition of Modern Marketer, you’ll gain an appreciation for how some of our peers within SoDA are deploying their forward-thinking processes, tools and techniques to help their clients get ahead.

Jordan Eshpeter from Invoke writes about how agencies and clients can leverage start-up principles rooted in user-centricity and iteration to reach their goals.

Nick Gower from Mentally Friendly talks about how to better understand the “true value” of a brand in today’s modern marketing mix.

And lastly, Chris Pile at TheFARM lays out how they collaborate with their clients to improve the age-old challenge of communication between clients and agencies.

Please enjoy these excellent thought starters.