Critiquing Marketing Pieces in Context 

Have you ever been in a situation where you were asked to give your opinion about a marketing piece of some kind: an advertisement, brochure, website, etc.? This is a relatively common question when interviewing for a marketing position or when pitching your services to a potential business client, so chances are you have. What has your response been? 

If you’re like most people, you probably dive right in and begin offering your personal perspectives on the piece. But here’s the thing: How can you really evaluate any marketing materials without knowing who the intended audience is and what the goal/objective of the marketing initiative is? Those are two critical bits of information that marketers need to know to create content—they’re also two critical bits of information that those evaluating marketing materials need to have before they can offer a valid evaluation.

And we’d add a third question: Who are you competing against? We would also want to take a look at how these competitors are positioned (e.g. what they say about themselves and what type of brand image they are conveying), because any evaluation would need to take into account how the marketer could convey their messages in ways that are better, or at least different than, the competition.

Ambler.com put this concept nicely when discussing the use of social media in marketing: “These days, it seems like marketing is a bad game of Jeopardy™ where the answer has become social media. But what was the question? What is the strategy? What is the goal?  It is highly likely that social media should be included in the mix, but if you don’t know why, it can also become a distraction.”

Putting your marketing evaluations into context isn’t just important for finding work. When you are pitched a marketing piece or strategy by an employee or potential service provider, you also need to look at what they are suggesting in the broader context of your industry, audience and objectives.

Recommended Reading:

The Everything Guide to Customer Engagement

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