A friend was telling me last night that he and his partner were trying to shift the focus of their company from being just a web design firm into more of an overall internet marketing firm.
Two things struck me when he said this which I’ve never really thought of before.
- “Internet Marketing” and all its variations are really bogus terms.
I’ve never heard of print marketing, or radio marketing. But since 2000, I’ve heard this term used quite extensively. In fact, I was at one point the Internet Marketing Manager at my company.Here’s why it doesn’t make sense: a marketer markets a product or service, and then we have to employ the right media to facilitate that marketing. And these days, the media must include the web and all the social media beacons that are launching as part of Web 2.0. And while some people really are marketing the Internet (and can therefore really be called “Internet Marketers”), the real successes will rest with those who market something remarkable and use the Internet to do it.
- Marketing and design are becoming harder and harder to separate.
Because the Internet is the primary medium, and because it changes quickly, and because it is relatively cheap to use, and because it is so accessible, in many cases, the design of the web tool is as central to the marketing strategy as anything else. So if marketers don’t know a thing or two about design, and if designers are clueless about marketing, you’re going to have problems. The two must be mixed to a certain degree, now more than ever.I think all marketers should become comfortable with some basic HTML, a little DreamWeaver and even some PhotoShop. I’m trying to catch up on those right now myself. In the same way, I think designers should read through or sit in some great marketing speakers, such as Sergio Zyman, Seth Godin or Mark Miller. The companies that are taking huge strides right now in the Web 2.0 world are those led by someone who is equal parts marketer and designer, and that’s going to continue for some time.
Sorry about the ominous tone in the title of this post – I could not help myself.