Generalists vs specialists

Generalists:

A general marketer will focus on the overall marketing needs for your non profit and must know a little bit about every aspect of marketing.  Typically called Brand Managers, Marketing Managers or Product Managers, general marketers are usually employees within large corporations.  When a general marketer needs extra help in certain areas, they call in the specialists.

Specialists:

Specialist marketers are experts within certain marketing fields, e.g. graphic artists, writers.  Usually they are external consultants, but large non-profits may have employees performing the same functions.

Why do you need a marketing generalist?

images-16There is always a risk in self-diagnosing your problem.  You need to make sure you get what you need….. not necessarily what you originally asked for.  A generalist will help you diagnose where your gaps are and either fill the gap themselves or find a specialist to fill the gap.   For example, you may want “more donations” – a generalist will help you determine whether its more efficient to approach existing donors or new donors.

Marketing is both an art and a science.  Marketing generalists are trained to do well at both, but there will always be a tendency for a generalist to feel more comfortable with either the art or the science.  If you need help clarifying and protecting your brand, search for a “marketing artist”.  If you need help calculating the efficiency of your revenue streams and analyzing donor churn, search for a “marketing scientist”.

When I meet a new client, I explain what I do by using an analogy with the real estate market.  When a homeowner sells their home, they can hire a “staging” company who removes clutter and decorates.  Staging companies make a home easy for buyers to want to buy.  Similarly, when I rebrand a client, I remove the clutter and focus on their key messages.  I make it easy for donors to donate to you.

 

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