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B2B Marketing – What Do You Mean When You Say Strategy?

Exercise:  When thinking about business strategy, write down one word that you believe best describes strategy.

That was the question Duct Tape Marketing Master Consultant Joe Costantino put before the assembled Duct Tape Marketing Consultants at the Gathering 2012.  He then shared that he goes through this exercise at workshops, boot camps, and speaking gigs and that the last time he conducted the poll 87 responses garnered 15 different words.

How did the attendees at Gathering 2012 do?

  • Plan (8)
  • Vision (3)
  • Roadmap (3)
  • Focus (2)
  • Clarity (2)
  • Purpose
  • Point of View
  • Approach
  • Reasons
  • Why
  • Framework
  • Direction
  • Positioning

Did you anticipate that many different words?  When you look at the list of words, do some strike you as odd or off the mark?

Keep in mind that the words we choose, the perceptions we have, and the level of expertise we have – is wildly different.  That in part, is the reason why there are 13 words and not two or three.

When you talk to a prospect or referral partner – remember that their perception or understanding is shaped by their experience, not your 20 years of expertise.  Take time to listen to their story and vocabulary and present your story in their terms.

I think we lose many opportunities to be understood, let alone stand out from the crowd, when we don’t take the time to listen, adjust our communication and verify that there is clarity.

Joe shared the following quote from Morris Chang (CEO, TSMC):

“Without strategy, execution is aimless.  Without execution, strategy is useless.”

I hope that your strategy and execution methods are in place and exercised daily.


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