INC. magazine - blog

It’s always thrilling to get a mention in a large national business publication.  Inc.’s Ryan McCarthy writes on his blog that Duct Tape Marketing’s John Jantsch has a word to say about getting your whole team involved in marketing!

From the article:

Getting marketing understanding and buy-in from your entire team makes them feel more empowered to act on behalf of the brand and better ambassadors wherever they encounter prospects and customers.

But let’s not fool ourselves.  If YOU are the small biz owner – this is your baby, your passion, your dream.  When you hire someone to work in your organization, unless they buy in to the “marketing is everybody’s job” concept, they may not embrace this reality that everything they do is marketing.  You might consider ways to inspire and make it fun for people to get on board:


– the administrative assistant hired to answer phones is, in a typical viewpoint, “just answering phones” – but in a marketing world, this person is offering the initial perception that a prospective client has about who you are and what you do.  Perhaps you might need to have a couple of friends call in to your primary business line as a test of what impression they get (you’re not likely going to hear what’s normally said until you are not hovering over your receptionist’s shoulder listening in).  But don’t just do so to play “gotcha” and punish the person for doing a poor job – instead REWARD for good impressions!  Offering incentives to this front-liner will no doubt remind him or her of their critical role in your company.

– alot of times people who work in the back of the shop become forgotten or at a minimum, disjointed from the marketing process.  So in the spirit of reward and incentive, start finding ways to invite the behind-the-scenes team members up to the front where they interact directly with the customer.  Perhaps the mechanic working on the car can come up front and explain the problem to the customer (most times, the mechanic tells the counter sales person and then when questions arise in the customer’s mind, the man up front is left with responding ineffectively: “I’m not the mechanic and can’t really answer that question, but just pay up and we’ll fix it”).    If safety is not a critical issue, have the mechanic invite the customer to view the problem with the brake pads themselves so as to minimize the suspicion in the customer’s mind.  When good work is done, reward!

– business cards may be dying in some circles, but have you presented EVERYONE on your team a stack of business cards with their name and title on it?  Again, we have traditionally reserved this cards for the “out front” folks.  But doesn’t it make sense to offer business cards to each and every member of the team?  Biz cards offer credibility and respect when they are not on the job but out with friends networking and exchanging contact information.  Biz cards heighten the sense of responsibility – consider giving titles that tell more about what they DO for the company (without being silly, but having fun that will allow their cards to generate buzz and curiosity:  “customer satisfaction specialist” 0r “loyal client creator” or “executive officer – idea implementation department” – you get the point.  Cards can seem useless and dated if they are traditional and boring.  But cards done right can bring everyone on board!  Here’s some ideas on making your business cards unforgettable.

– don’t be afraid to pull in strategic people from every corner of your organization into your “marketing department” – do away with the traditional separatist strategy and invite specific leaders from every department and train them regularly on your marketing strategy.  Then, DON’T TELL THEM, but invite them into brainstorming ideas on how their department can help you reach your strategic marketing objectives.  Top-down marketing plans rarely excite anyone!

Marketing is a team effort and must permeate every space in your organization or business.  What ideas do you have?