It’s crazy. It changes constantly. It’s a little bit science, a little bit art. What worked yesterday won’t necessarily work tomorrow. Deadlines shift – and never in the direction you want them to. Eight hours a day is never enough. You’ll lay awake at night trying to figure it all out. And yet, those of us who work in marketing love it and wouldn’t have it any other way.
I’ve always said if I won the lottery, I wouldn’t quit my job, I’d just live a hell of a lot better. When I tell people what I do, I usually quip, “it beats working for a living.” And yet, I put in way more hours than when I worked construction or in a factory as a young man. So, what is it that makes those of us who work in marketing love what we do? I asked a lot of my colleagues at The Yaffe Group and the answers fell into a few distinct categories. Which ones do you fall into?
Marketing is never boring. A number of people talked about how the constant change makes the work more exciting. It’s something I definitely enjoy – the fast pace, the fact that each day and each project brings a whole new set of problems to solve.
“I love the fact that it is never the same and I actually enjoy the fast pace,” says Media Buyer Marie Smith.
Karen Jameson, Print Production Manager, concurs, “As I’ve always said – deadlines junkies – work best under pressure and the pleasure of accomplishment.”
Marketing demands creative problem solving. It’s part of what makes it exciting to do. There are many ways you can solve each problem and accomplish each goal in marketing. It’s not a discipline where you can solve it once and just do the same thing over and over again. It takes creativity, insight and sometimes a flash of inspiration to come with solutions that truly work well. For those of us who like solving those puzzles this is the perfect place to be.
“You’re constantly trying to solve problems in new and creative ways and we have all these remarkable tools to work with. The word “marketing” makes it smaller than the ambition,” says Chief Creative Officer, Mark Simon.
“I like creating unique and custom solutions for people,” adds our Senior Art Director. “The idea of one right answer has always felt very mathematical and restrictive to me. Whereas working in this field allows for a creative and explorative approach to problem solving”
“There’s a solution for everything. Sometimes you just have to look a little harder to find it,” says Media Supervisor Karen Potochick. “I’ve never really believed that something is “impossible” (hence the five black belts), so we continue to make things happen that might seem impossible to others.”
“I love the thinking and creative process behind ads and watching them come to life,” says Kelsey Abbgy, Account Coordinator. “Without creativity being present in the ad industry, I don’t think this is where I would have ended up with my career.”
And finally, from Victoria Webb, Director of Client Service, “Being at the forefront of marketing innovative products and services AND still finding innovative ways to market existing brands and companies is exciting. We are lucky to do this for a living.”
Marketing gives you a better understanding of human nature. If nothing else, success at marketing is all about understanding what motivates us as humans to do the things we do. We developed our whole practice of Humanalytics around this premise – combining data and human emotion to figure out how to move someone into action. If this is something that fascinates you, marketing is a field where you can delve deeply into the human condition.
“I love digging into the depths of a consumer’s mind to learn why it is they buy the products or services that they do,” says Kelsey Abbgy. “Is it because it is a product they grew up knowing? Is it a personal preference because the product tastes or works better than others? Is it because of price? Or is it because they saw a cool ad for the product?”
Heather Pence, Account Supervisor, feels the same way, “We help organizations understand and relate to their audiences in unique, human ways – in ways that remove some of the space or distance between an “organization” or “business” and their “customers”. It’s about understanding common thoughts, feelings and behaviors.”
“It’s all about changing behavior and changing minds,” adds Victoria Web. “I always think about that quote “If Henry Ford would’ve asked people what they wanted, people would have said faster horses and better buggy whips” is a great example of bringing an idea/product to market that was revolutionary and changed behavior.”
Marketing is the bond that ties us. There’s a certain “band of brothers” (and sisters) mentality to those of us who survive in the trenches of Marketing. Let’s face it, us marketing folks are a little “different” – it’s a place where weird and odd can find a good home. But besides that, the fact that we spend so much time together working towards the same goal from different perspectives brings us closer than some other work environments might.
Karen Potochick sums it up this way, “I can still call my marketing cohorts, after not having spoken to them in 20 years, and know that they will respond with genuine interest and will brainstorm solutions to any marketing challenge or question I might have.”
Senior Accountant, Laurel Masaid sums up how all our different weirdness’s ties us together, “I love everyone’s desk/office styles. John’s disorganized organization, Mike’s stacks on his desk, Kyle’s empty office, Araceli’s new bulletin boards, Mark’s clean modern style, Victoria’s at home feel, Buffy’s ever changing office, my awesome coordinating colors and style…”
That bond extends beyond those in our offices. As Heather Pence put it, “The thing I love most is learning about our clients and the communities they serve, the needs they fill. We’re fortunate to work with great organizations. They serve their communities well and do business right.”
Yaffe Group Marketing. I still contend that it beats working for a living. We’re a unusual breed who really does love what we do. How about you? If you’re in marketing, what do you love about it? If you do something else, what do you love about your job? Do you wake up in the morning excited to start your day? I do. And I hope you do too.
Mike McClure, unabashed marketing lover