According to the American Marketing Association, marketing is:
Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.
Blech. Imagine how long it took them to come up with that gobbledygook. And it is meaningless.
Unfortunately, so is a lot of marketing. It's babble to make a big group of people happy because it didn't actually promise anything, risk anything or shock, surprise or inspire anyone.
Real marketing is about connecting the right message to the right people in the right place at the right time. It's being smart enough to talk to the audience about what they care about (as opposed to your bullet pointed list of features) and creative enough to be memorable.
It's about being confident enough in your product or service that you'll make bold promises and keep them. It's about being passionate enough that you'll take risks to be sure that the people who need to know....know. And it's about being disciplined enough to stay the course until the job is done. Because you know it's done on the consumer's schedule, not yours.
Marketing is the perfect combination of head and heart. Without the strategy, it's just noise blowing around in the wind. And without the passion, it's just gantt charts and bullet points. But when you blend the two -- you create marketing that connects with people and their needs. It makes them feel. it makes them want to belong. It makes them believe that they matter, because you genuinely think they do. And for the CFOs out there, It makes them open their wallet and act.
It makes them a raving fan.