There’s a point in every marketing job which I call the Point of “PMI”. Usually you can only spot when that point occurs with hindsight – frequently with a very long amount of hindsight. But right now we’re in a fairly unique position. Because for many of us that Point of “PMI” is Right Now. And the question is what are you going to do about that?
Marketers like technical-sounding phrases without – according to a currently raging debate on LinkedIn – the academic rigour that goes with them, so I’ve named the Point I’m talking about as “PMI” in order to grab your attention. But there’s really nothing technical about it at all.
The “PMI” is your “Peak Moment of Influence”. It’s that moment when you have the greatest opportunity to influence the way that your business thinks about the marketing that you do. There will likely only ever be one such moment in your time with a particular business. It’s the point where even your critics stop and give you a hard stare, the moment where they see you, what you do, and what you say where they were blind before. It’s the point that can change impressions. It’s the point where people stop to consider the impact of marketing. It’s the point where marketing is actively tested by the wider business. This is the cross-roads.
And for many that “PMI” is NOW. The covid-19 crisis has put Business Marketing in the spotlight like never before. And the good news is that, in many of the cases I’ve encountered, marketers have met that challenge. The profile of Business Marketing today is greater than it was three months ago. Of course some have seen budgets slashed, and resources cut, redeployed, or furloughed – but make no mistake that’s not a comment on marketing (or the marketers impacted) rather on what uncommitted costs a business can rein in at a time of extraordinary crisis.
On the whole business leaders are saying to me that they recognise an importance in doing Business Marketing well that was quite off the agenda at the start of the year. They’ve needed their marketers to steer their brands, generate demand, and deliver leads where these could have been ignored before the coronavirus cometh. And marketers have met that challenge taking an agile approach in steering what businesses say, where, and to whom. With tangible results. That’s amazing and really positive news!
But now it’s time to be strategic again. You’ve reached “PMI”. The business is looking at you in a new light. And the clock has started ticking. For “PMI” is just a moment. It won’t last forever. You’ve got limited time to enjoy it. And so you need to think carefully what you’re going to do with it. Because this is an opportunity for you to reset the way that your business does marketing for the better forever.
Maybe it’s a time to reset the involvement of marketing in business planning. Or the moment to redefine your brand and how the business thinks about branding. Or perhaps it’s time to get your processes in place. Or maybe it’s time to define what marketing is. Whatever it is. This is it! Do it now!
This moment won’t come again. Use it well.
Dave Stevens is a B2B marketing consultant and can be contacted at DaveStevensNow@gmail.com. He is Chair and Co-Founder of the Business Marketing Club, a not-for-profit community network of B2B marketing professionals and people interested in B2B marketing. Find out more at www.businessmarketingclub.org.uk.