Published on March 10, 2014
Last year, Hubspot presented a slideshow featuring “101 Awesome marketing quotes” from famous marketers and inbound marketing professionals.
Quotes can be inspiring. But we have to be careful. Whenever you find one bit of “marketing wisdom” that you think is right, you can, with a little creativity, come up with one that says the opposite-- and seems just as right. So here’s my exercise in doing just that.
“Conventional Wisdom” is only cure for conventional wisdom.
“When you enchant people, your goal is not to make money from them or to get them to do what you want, but to fill them with great delight.” Guy Kawaski "Delight your customers all you want. The real test is: as they stare in wonder, are they reaching for their wallet?" (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"Great content is the best sales tool in the world." Marcus Sheridan, The Sales Lion Blog, via Hubspot "If content were the best sales tool, everyone would be trying to advertise in encyclopedias. Content doesn't sell; context does.“ (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"Make the customer the hero of your story." (Ann Hadley, via HubSpot) "Customers want to feel special, but they also want to look up to heroes. No one watches the Olympics and thinks ‘That was an inspiring story, but do I know this person?’ " (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"If you wait until there is another case study in your industry, you will be too late." (Seth Godin, via HubSpot). “There are two types of business project: the sure thing, and the innovation. In the first, the more case studies means safer. In the second, your goal is to be the case study.” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"Nobody cares about your products except you. Create great content!" (David Meerman-Scott, via HubSpot) “Nobody buys a Coke thinking ‘Mmm, I love the Coca-Cola company's beverage related content!’” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"Bring the best of your authentic self to every opportunity." (John Jantsch, Author of Duct Tape Marketing) “If someone has to remind you to act authentically, you won't be authentic. Really, you've already failed.” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"Your culture is your brand." (Tony Hsieh of Zappos, via HubSpot) “Your culture is not your brand.” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"You can't just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them." (Steve Jobs, via HubSpot). Actually, I like that one a lot.
"More contact means more sharing of information, gossiping, exchanging, engaging-- in short, more word of mouth." (Gary Vaynerchuck, author) "The more we connect, the more we instinctively filter. Gossip can thrive in a small village, but who has time to keep up with 500+ contacts?" (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"... one way to sell a consumer something in the future is simply to get his or her permission in advance." (Seth Godin, via HubSpot) “Nobody buys when you ask for the sale. Instead, show them something cool." (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"Let your originality-- your specialness, your brand personality-- come through in your online content." (Ann Handley, via HubSpot) "Instead of trying to be unique, try sounding like you're part of something. People have more personality than brands, and interesting people make for interesting content." (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"When you want to change things, you won't please everyone." (Sheryl Sandberg, COO at Facebook, via HubSpot) “And if you don't want to change things, you won't please anyone.” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
“The weird set an example for the rest of us. They raise the bar; they show is through their actions that in fact we're wired to do the new, not to comply with someone a thousand miles away.” Seth Godin, via HubSpot “Being weird isn't the same as being unique, brilliant, or visionary. Being unique, brilliant, or visionary are those things. There are just as many people who are weird and annoying, clueless, or downright dysfunctional. We break barriers when we hit limits, not by waking up with a new personality.” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
“No matter what, the very first piece of social media real estate I'd start with is a blog." (Chris Brogan, via HubSpot) “No matter what, I'd start any social media project with an identity and a voice. Before a blog, you need something to say, and a new way of saying it." (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
“People shop and learn in a whole new way compared to just a few years ago, so marketers need to adapt or risk extinction." (Brian Halligan, via HubSpot) “No matter what technology brings, human psychology has been largely the same across time. Master that, and you can market in any era, come what may.” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
“For B2B marketers, our biggest obstacles are usual complexity and fear of failure. We need to be willing to fail.” (Tim Washer, Corporate Comedian at Cisco, via HubSpot “For B2B marketers, our biggest obstacle is refusing to make the tough choices. Trying to be everything to everyone, trying everything new, leaving no channel unturned. Do some research, rule out what's not gonna work for you. Pick something, because that's how you become authentic." (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"My theory is that, in the age of the internet, it's what you write, not where you write it, that matters." (Dan Lyons, via HubSpot) "Bullshit. Huff Post, Forbes, and Fast Company will always have more readership than mylameblog.com. If the internet existed in Shakespeare's time, he'd still need to get syndicated to get noticed." (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"It no longer makes economic sense to send an advertising message to the many in the hopes of persuading the few." (M. Lawrence Light, former CMO Mcdonald's, via HubSpot). Actually, I like the sentiment here, but it's totally impractical. Maybe I’d believe him if I saw this quote in a private message. But as a side note: remind me to never nominate Light to help out on a tight Presidential campaign. That’s a great case of really needing to persuade the few, and doing so by advertising to the many…
“In today's Information age of Marketing and Web 2.0, a company's website is the key to their entire business." (Marcus Sheridan, via HubSpot). Um, no. Plus, "String together all the catch phrases you want, it won't make any asset of yours more or less valuable. Only hard work does that." (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"Increasingly, the mass marketing is turning into a mass of niches." (Chris Anderson, author, via HubSpot) “All marketing is, and always has been, niche marketing. It's just that the big niches have lots of strong players competing, and they all want to convince you to go chasing after their scraps." (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"The way that you can understand all of the social media is as the creation of a new kind of public space." (Danah Boyd, Social Media Researcher for Microsoft, via HubSpot) “Social media is like being at a huge party, with everyone talking at once. You can flit from conversation to conversation, or focus on one; raise your head when you hear your name, or keep quiet entirely. It's not public or private, but something new. Just make sure you know who's hosting the party, and why.” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
“For corporate marketers, podcasting is low- hanging fruit.” (Paul Gillin, author, via HubSpot) “For people with something interesting to say, podcasting is low-hanging fruit. For marketers: good luck.” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
“Inspiration is the most important part of our digital strategy." (Paull Young, Director of Digital Content at charity:water, via HubSpot). “Inspiration can be good or foolish. Hire good people, you'll get the good kind. For all other strategies, better track your ROI." (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"Increasingly, search is our mechanism for how we understand ourselves, our world, and our place within it." (John Battelle, via HubSpot). “No, that's philosophy. If you were right, our understanding would never be much deeper than Miley Cyrus, Black Friday deals, and ideas for training your dog.” (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
"For business, our internet love affair was a gift from the gods." (Gary Vaynerchuk, author, via HubSpot) “Internet marketing is a bit like internet pornography: lots of people are into it, but it’s mostly an exercise is self- gratification." (Brandon Towl, A Sack of Hammers)
Interested in me or anything I had to say? My marketing skeptic’s blog: http://www.asackofhammers.com/ Or contact me through: brandon [at] wordshaveimpact.com
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