Marketing and the 3 C’s: Words to Ignore at Your Peril


One morning I was sitting with a client when his phone rang. He picked up the phone and had a heated conversation with the caller. He then said goodbye and slammed the phone down saying, “Customers!” Haven’t we all had that feeling? But you can’t beat listening to the customer. We recommend not only surveys, which are an excellent tool for gathering intelligence, but also face-to-face meetings where you really get to hear the good, the bad, and the ugly. You need to listen hard to your customers to improve your value proposition and avoid the commodity trap, or worse, the irrelevance trap!


Collaboration isn’t a choice anymore, it’s a necessity. A study out of Carnegie Mellon University has been asking people at a wide variety of companies for years, “What percentage of the knowledge you need to do your job is stored in your own mind?” Twenty years ago the answer was typically about 75 percent. Recently that percentage slid to 15 percent. This means you need partners with different skills – specialists in other fields. Collaboration fuels innovation. It’s an opportunity to do better than your best, and do it more efficiently. This is true within your own company and in partnering with other complementary companies.


Now, this is a word that scares many people. It often conjures up a picture of warm-fuzzy, art-for-art sake, self-indulgence. Not so. Engineering is not just an applied science. All around us every day we see incredibly creative engineers creating incredibly creative tools. If you are successful, people will notice and your market will be hotly contested. If you can’t put creativity to good use you’ll be vulnerable to competitors who are hungrier than you are. Imagination is a legal means to gain an advantage over the competition. Creative leverage combines the thoroughness of the left brain with the artistry of the right. Don’t be afraid.

In today’s increasingly competitive world, it is important that we use every edge to get ahead. Companies cannot do it alone. They must reach outside of their organization for ideas and solutions. If they don’t, they will stagnate, while their competition moves forward.  If you are interested in discussing these ideas further to help your create a marketing strategy that furthers your company, contact us today.

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