So called experts

While at a recent B2B marketing summit, I took advantage of having several of my company’s efforts (web site, email campaigns, landing pages) critiqued. For the most part, I was happy. But one review (by one of the vendors trying to sell their services) had me just shaking my head.

He was quick to be a critic but never asked about my market, customers or unique issues I had to deal with. Basically, he was not too smart. He had some good comments in general on our stuff but “in general” is not what I deal with. I have a specific audience. And specific needs for my niche. I don’t need some “best of practices” sermon. I like to keep up w/ best of practices but you need to tweak them to meet your specific needs.

I’ve been an independent consultant so I’ve been in his shoes. And he just doesn’t get it. He didn’t listen to me at all.

While I was consulting, I had a potential client (who really wanted to hire me) ask me about what I could do to increase her lead generation. Now, I’m an expert at lead gen. But I asked her to take a step back and think about her target market. I told her, I could generate 100’s of leads in a heartbeat. But I tried to tell her, that’s not what she wants or needs. She needed a limited number of quality leads. She just couldn’t focus down on a targeted segment where we could really get quality leads. 

At the end of the day, I gave her a lot of advice and I’m not really sure what she did or where she went. I feel really good about the engagement because I helped her better understand what she wanted and was trying to do. 

For me, the lesson was do your best and don’t sell out. I could have easily just taken her money and delivered “leads.” But it wouldn’t have helped her business. A more thorough strategic overview would have helped. Plus, a business plan.

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