Many of us in marketing can often be frustrated with the lack of support we get from management or ownership. We are aware of how much the Internet and advances in technology are complicating things, but it often seems our bosses don't get it.
They are not as committed or invested as we think they should be in implementing a digital marketing strategy. At the same time, in your gut and in your heart, you know that their attitude is preventing the company from being as effective, competitive and profitable as it could be.
Note: I am writing this article with the assumption that your boss is a company owner or C-level executive in your organization, someone who is involved in much more than just sales and marketing. They are involved in defining the company's business plans and strategy and have to concern themselves with things such as profitability and cash flow.
So How Do You Change This?
To begin with, it will help if you first realize that they may have the same perception of you. YOU JUST DON'T GET IT.
As an owner, I can tell you they are probably right. You don't get it, or at least I should say you don't get them. While your world works around the fascinating and ever changing world of marketing in a digital age, you fail to recognize theirs doesn't; and that's what you don't get.
You don't understand it and quite frankly you need a wake-up call. Ring the alarm and get on with it and you might be amazed at what you could accomplish. If you don't, plan on continuing to be relegated to frustrations and mediocrity.
One of the first principles of marketing is to understand your customer. Understand who they are and what makes them tick. What are their goals, what are their aspirations, what are the concerns and frustrations they deal with every day? Most importantly, understand how they buy what you are selling.
In other words, if you want your boss to provide you more funds, more resources and to be more invested in and committed to what you are doing, look at them as your most important customer.
What does this actually mean? First you need to start with the fundamentals. The better you are at the fundamentals, not only will you be better positioned to win the support you want from your boss, you'll also be a better marketer.
Start with persona development. As a modern day digital marketing professional you should have at least a fundamental understanding of personas. If not, there are two great resources in Hubspot and the Buyer Persona Institute. Take the time to develop a persona for your boss. What are their goals and concerns? What is their typical day like? What is their decision making process?
What is your boss's persona?
When you start this process, begin by developing their persona based on your past experiences with them, and don't be afraid to make some assumptions on the areas in which you lack insights. If you want to get a bit bolder you may want to interview others on your management team that can provide you insights. Or you may even ask your boss directly.
The main goal of this process is gain a better understanding of your boss and what is important to them. Once you understand them, you can begin to create a strategy to help them make decisions that are in their best interest and help you move forward with the projects you know are going to help the company.
There is one last point I would like to make. You will never fully understand your boss, especially if your boss is a company owner. However, it is likely that the effort to better understand them will help both you and your boss achieve your objectives.