The mess of differentiation.
Here’s a quick list of types of marketing. This list is only going to get longer as time progresses.
- Digital Marketing
- Content Marketing
- Search Engine Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Social Media Marketing
- Inbound Marketing
- Outbound Marketing
- Affiliate Marketing
- Mobile Marketing
- Influencer Marketing
- Event Marketing
- Guerilla Marketing
You get the idea.
One or more of those likely caught your attention more than the others.
Through our differing experiences as individuals and the shape of the stories we tell ourselves we each resonate at different levels to the same message.
Intentionally knowing this, people come up with new types of marketing to enter the fray.
Shawn Wang talks about the Law of Two Words:
Every idea attempts to condense itself until it hits Two Words. Those ideas which cannot are replaced by ones which can.
As explained by Naval:
Become the best in the world at what you do. Keep redefining what you do until this is true.
You see this same strategy in Blue Ocean Strategy:
Blue ocean strategy is the simultaneous pursuit of differentiation and low cost to open up a new market space and create new demand. It is about creating and capturing uncontested market space, thereby making the competition irrelevant.
Now you have people looking for a niche offering that only a select few provide. Are each of these fields truly unique? No. The overlap is tremendous.
In some cases, specialization does occur and benefits the end service provided. But what I’m more concerned with is how it serves to confuse people looking to learn more about marketing.
Where do you start in that mess? Each differentiation focuses more and more on how you’ll be discovered. But that’s not the core of marketing.
On of Wes Kao’s SPOVs is:
There’s so much jargon nowadays that even seasoned marketers don’t know all the marketing jargon. There are literally terms being made up every week. ABM for account based marketing, the flywheel to replace the funnel, product marketing which is just marketing. Don’t get caught up in terminology or let others make you feel out of the loop. It’s a power tactic. All of these terms are the same core principles—recycled and renamed for a particular channel or audience. But it’s still the same core principles. Understand those principles and you can easily grasp whatever new term is the marketing flavor of the week.
So people get lost in hustling to interrupt just the right people and looking to find shortcuts instead of doing the hard work of understanding and executing viable ways forward.
You can get started with how to do something, but work to understand the why behind it all.