Albert Einstein said: “The only source of knowledge is experience.” So when does marketing experience stop being relevant?
I pose the question because Pelican were recently challenged by an editor of a trade magazine about work we undertook for a client 15 years ago.
The journalist claimed that by making mention of it on the company’s website was misleading people and creating the impression the organisation is a client, although no such claim was made.
He was, in effect, saying that our experience with the client was no longer relevant.
He’s entitled to his view. After all, much has changed in the last decade and a half. The internet was in its infancy, social media didn’t exist and neither did the smartphone or tablet. But does that make many years of strategic insight, market knowledge and know-how irrelevant?
If so, just when does experience stop being relevant? After one year? After five years? 10 years?
Should Paul McCartney stop writing songs because the Beatles split up in 1970? Should football pundit Alan Shearer stop analysing matches because he stopped playing in 2006? Should Nigel Lawson stop commenting on Brexit when he hasn’t been Chancellor of the Exchequer since 1989? Obviously not. All these people have vast amounts of experience and we respect their views because they provide us with perspective, insight and sometimes inspiration.
Experiences I had working as a local newspaper reporter are just as relevant to my job today as they were 25 years ago. Things I have learned this week will likely serve me for many years to come. Every day is a school day, as they say.
Industry research with marketing directors, as well as experience with many organisations we have advised, has proved time and time again that clients want marketing communications and PR agencies that know and understand their markets from day one. In other words they want to be advised by people who have the right experience.
Demonstrating experience is an important element in showing existing and potential clients that we know what we’re talking about and that we can bring our experience to bear to help them achieve their organisational objectives through delivering effective marketing and PR programmes.
So rather than being small minded and picky, my friend from the fourth estate should be celebrating the fact that specialist agencies like Pelican exist. Because with specialists like us he and many others, journalists are able to fill column inches with a regular flow of well written, newsworthy stories and features. We’re able to provide great content because of – you guessed it – years’ of experience doing the job.
So let’s celebrate experience and recognise its value. After all Albert Einstein seemed to think it was important and he really knew a thing or two relatively speaking.
Pelican Communications are specialists in the environment, food and drink, outdoor and leisure and packaging sectors and offer a range of services such as media relations, brand management, event management and people development. Contact us for marketing and communications expertise.