Is marketing what your office manager does best?

There was an interesting story in the Globe and Mail’s business section three weeks ago (or so) about a failed, golf course-themed, real estate community in Muskoka, ON. (The article was called ‘Boomers and the bust in Muskoka’s vacation land,’ and you can read it here

Was I surprised to hear that this project failed? No. Their positioning & marketing strategy was — how can I put this kindly? — dated. It’s as if it was designed by Michael Scott from the TV sitcom ‘The Office.’ As the Globe’s writer said, “Golf course communities have been steadily falling out of favour.”

(To most people nowadays, the phrase ‘golf course community’ = old. And the word ‘old’ is one of the most unattractive words in the English language.)

The point I’m about to make may not be popular. It may not win me friends. But I must make it: Too often when new projects/ventures are conceived, “a pinch of marketing” is the last ingredient added to the dish.

Even then, so many take the do-it-yourself marketing route. Don’t tell us you’ve never heard this one: “My nephew is building our new website,” or, “Our office manager looks after our Facebook.”

My 2¢: Is marketing what your office manager does best? If yes, she/he is in the wrong business. Sometimes those who take the do-it-yourself route in marketing get lucky and everything works out well. Often times, however, the ending’s a little different.

The good news is that the first step to fixing the do-it-yourself marketing habit, because that’s what it is, is simple: accept that you’re far from a neutral observer in your own life.

Aug 12, 2015