Marketing is a vital corporate function in that it leads to strong positioning, communication and, ultimately, growth. Good marketers master a wide skill set in moving key growth initiatives through the organization, and are often tapped for leadership roles later in their careers. Here are five personal traits of successful marketers that I have observed consistently in organizations of all sizes:
1. Thinking Like an Entrepreneur
Even in a big corporate setting, good marketers see their brand or business as a player in a category context – part of a high stakes game with unlimited opportunity. In doing so, they develop category expertise, better equipping them to develop and execute strategies, compete, and gain market share, according to the strategic plan.
2. Analytically Inquisitive
Marketers have acute analytical skills and drive for fact-based decisions. Their intuitive gut instinct is channeled toward finding data to prove or disprove a hypothesis of consumer response or market assessment. The growth of digital transactional data will increase the importance of data analysis.
3. Quick Decision Makers
Decision making is a trait that often suffers due to the increasing level of data analysis and “issue-vetting” required in corporate marketing. For example, large companies end up teaching junior recruits that it is better to uncover critical errors and make no decision than to move ahead in the wrong direction. While instructive for critical thinking skills, good marketers know that opportunities need to be seized. They learn when to stop analyzing, draw conclusions and make a decision. Decision-making skill comes from repetition and practice.
4. Passionately Competitive
Business is competitive and like every entrepreneur, marketers must have a strong desire to be competitive and win. With customers, both sides must reach win-win decisions that propel each business forward. With competitors, marketing can be the ultimate sport. Like a well-fought game, the team that is most prepared and creative can always win fairly.
5. Collaborative Team Leaders
Good marketers are natural project leaders who foster collaborative team environments when leading complex tasks that require a lot of effort and resources. Team leadership combines the abilities to set goals, keep projects on track to goal or completion, break through corporate barriers, and foster a collaborative spirit to empower individuals to contribute creativity and maximum effort.