Business and Finance

Eight characteristics of a good marketing manager

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What is it that separates the good marketing managers from the average marketing managers in South Africa? After chatting to a ton of marketing managers in South Africa over the past few years, I have identified some common characteristics of good marketing managers.
So, if you are in marketing and looking for a promotion, and wondering what you can do to improve yourself, or if you are looking to hire a new marketing manager; these are the characteristics of a good marketing manager.

  1. Follow international marketing trends

    As a result of the financial crisis in many developed countries; marketing strategies and tactics had to evolve and marketing managers needed to find innovative new ways of achieving objectives at lower costs.

    In South Africa, we experienced less of a financial crisis, so most marketing managers have carried on doing the same thing as before. One of the characteristics of good marketing managers is to follow international marketing trends and stay on top of the game by implementing the relevant trends.

  2. Be obsessed with analytics and ROI

    If something cannot be measured, it is best not to do it at all. Increased brand awareness or knowledge that can be measured by an annual brand survey is not good enough; as everyone knows, the research results can be easily manipulated. You also need benchmarks to improve though, so just because you need to be able to show return on investment, it does not mean you should not try new things that you have not done before.

  3. Do not brief an agency for everything

    Agencies have other clients, so when you brief them, you get placed fairly in a queue and this slows things down. Becoming an agile marketer that can quickly take advantage of situations means you need to be able to respond quickly. Plus, you should understand your industry and target market better than any agency, so you should be able to put together great strategies very quickly.

    This may sound weird coming from us, as we are an inbound marketing agency, however, think of it this way, if you are our client, but uncover an opportunity that will bring you immediate leads, you would be able to implement it alongside what we are doing.

  4. Present to customers and prospects

    Instead of sitting in your office creating great presentations and marketing strategies, spend a portion of your time going out to see customers and prospects with your sales team. Then when you are out, use the presentation templates you have created and try to present. This will highlight areas that need improvement instead of continually hearing complaints that you do not understand from your sales team.

  5. Read marketing news and thought leadership

    You are fantastic, but getting perspective by reading the views of other fantastic peers will only make you more fantastic!

    Unless you have time and budget to attend many marketing conferences, reading is also the best way to keep up with marketing trends, especially international trends. A characteristic of good marketing managers it they schedule time in their diaries everyday to read, do the same.

  6. Work towards a revenue target

    Initially, set yourself a revenue target that you need to achieve through your marketing strategies by finding new business and by increasing billing of existing customers, but do not tell anyone. This will allow you to set a benchmark of what you can achieve and will also highlight any issues with tracking performance and linking it to marketing campaigns.

  7. Encourage people to criticize your work

    This is one of the most difficult things to do in marketing. When you put so much effort into campaigns; the last thing you want to hear is negativity. Whenever someone says something negative about something you have done, ask them how they would have done it better. The insights you will receive by doing this will only result in better campaigns in future.

  8. Aim to achieve one revenue-generating goal a day

    Everyday you need to be able to easily identify one thing you did that directly and tangibly touched customers or prospects resulting in revenue being generated for the company.

    So often, your day is filled with meetings, developing strategies, updating positioning and so many other things that take you away from generating revenue. If you do this, you will be able to show the impact of marketing and soon have a team that can do all the admin stuff for you.


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