Have you ever heard the phrase “fake it till you make it”? Even if you don’t currently hold a leadership position, acting as a leader increases the likelihood that you will become one eventually. If you act like a leader, you are much more likely to make things happen and stand out from colleagues and the competition. Leadership often involves thinking outside the box, being disruptive, building community and taking extreme responsibility for your actions. As marketers, we should strive to be leaders in our field, be bold in our choices and strive for innovation if we wish to differentiate our brand from competitors.
Leadership skills that are used by students, employees and board members are applicable to our marketing strategies and can be observed in leading marketing campaigns. These skills include proactivity, creativity, empathy and curiosity.
Although marketing is a science, it is very much an art as well. As such, existing marketing theories and concepts are not always the best solutions to market challenges. Successful and leading marketers are tinkerers, think outside the box and create their own strategies and concepts.
Certain aspects of a marketing campaign should involve tried and true solutions; however, marketers should be proactive in attempting new and risky moves as well. In these attempts benefits are not certain, nevertheless, this is the best way to disrupt the market, force change and potentially become a leading force to be reckoned with.
This concept is probably obvious to most, but marketing leaders should be creative. Creativity extends beyond messages and campaigns, it is also applicable to measurement approaches, problem solving skills and methods of connecting to target audiences.
A successful marketing leader should be able to empathize with target markets. Marketing is inextricably linked to psychology and the best way to alter behavior is to understand the thoughts and feelings that drive purchases (or lack thereof). Marketing leaders are able to empathize and connect to the thoughts and emotions that drive their consumers and successfully construct messages that are attached to these driving forces.
Empathy in your strategy is likely to create meaning, successfully engage your target market and ultimately build a stronger community. This is necessary if you wish to extend the projected lifetime of your product, service or brand.
It is much too common for people to grow complacent in their jobs. Individuals often keep doing the things they have always done simply because they have always been done in a certain way. Marketing leaders ignore the status quo and constantly ask whether or not there are more efficient ways to get the job done.
Perhaps there is new software that facilitates measuring results? Is there better way to communicate your message to appropriately engage your target audiences? A leading marketer questions everything and enjoys playing with possibilities and leaving their comfort zone. After all, this is where the magic happens.
These are just some of the components that are necessary to thrive as a leader in the marketing field. Although there are likely many more skills that are necessary or helpful, developing your proactivity, creativity, empathy and curiosity will likely help you stand out in your field.