December 16, 2021

You (Kevin) Are Sorely Mistaken

In the "before times" I spoke at a conference. You might remember those days ... no masks, people shaking hands right and left, buffet lines serving lunch, a shared experience.

My job was to deliver a thesis ... that our future was digitally oriented and that we'd have to almost have a brand-marketing focus (which sounds contrary to what you currently hear but how the heck is anybody going to want to consume your content unless your "brand" stands for something?) requiring different staffing, different talent, and a different approach. At the time, I'd likely analyzed 10,000,000,000ish purchase transactions, and I saw how e-commerce brands approached commerce vs. old-school brands. There was a path to the future, and it wasn't a terribly hard path to follow.

So I finish my presentation, and a professional asks me to talk to him out in the hallway, away from people. Here was his quote:
  • "I realize you've analyzed ten billion purchase transactions, but it is my job to sell paper, and if you think I'm going to stop feeding my family so that your vision of the future comes true you are sorely mistaken, Kevin."

Can't blame the guy for saying that. It was his job to sell paper.

But realize that the position he takes requires you, the Business Leader, to filter misinformation. Somebody who says that to me in private is going to say something to you in public, and you won't know if the person is being honest or is making sure that he continues to feed his family.

In 2022, you're going to see a continuation of marketing misinformation. Be strong. Do what is right for your business, so that you can keep feeding your family.

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