Embrace the Messy

Thousands of companies try to follow the principles in marketing pro Marcus Sheridan’s bestselling book, They Ask, You Answer. But not all of them succeed.

Find out why some companies fail to grow and how to keep it from happening to you. 

Reason #1: Resistance

Getting buy-in from your whole team is one of the five keys to pulling off They Ask, You Answer marketing. If you don’t get their buy-in, you’ll get resistance instead. 

These principles haven’t been used in your industry before. So you’re likely to hear your team say, “We’ve always done it the other way. We don’t need to change.” That mindset won’t carry your business into the digital age. You’ve got your team thinking forward if you want to appeal to today’s buyer. 

Reason #2: Throwing the marketing team under the bus

Many companies say, “This is a marketing project. Let them handle it.” But they don’t give the marketing team more resources or people to make it happen. At that point, you’re just setting them—and your business—up for failure. 

You’ll need to hire a content manager and a videographer to handle all this new content. You’ll also need to get the whole team thinking about how to market to customers and potential recruits. Whether you like it or not, everybody’s in marketing now.

Reason #3: Outsourcing too much

You may need someone from outside your company—like a writer, designer, or videographer—to help with some content. But don’t outsource the majority of the work. 

It would be best if you produced most of your content in-house, especially the basic stuff. That’s how you develop your brand voice and get your team on board. 

Reason #4: Unrealistic expectations

You or your team may think, We can’t let this content out the door. It’s not perfect. If you have that mindset, your marketing efforts will never work. 

Applying They Ask, You Answer principles is messy at first. Finding subject matter experts, building your marketing department, or getting comfortable being on camera takes time. That’s why one of Marcus’ core ideas is “Embrace the messy.” You’ll get better and become more effective over time. It won’t be perfect, but it can still be good.

Reason #5: Creating ineffective content

You can tackle all these obstacles, but it won’t matter if you give customers and recruit the wrong content. In his next lesson, Marcus discusses what it takes to create effective content and how it helps your business. 

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