Industry Magazine Get JACK'D Magazine Winter 2019 - Page 15
planning activities that the team ALREADY
knew how to measure, the team started
focusing on activities, tasks, and plans
that would close their ROI knowledge-gap.
The team focused on professional growth
opportunities instead of tactical execution.
The transformation had begun.
Ask yourself, what is the one thing you want
your team to focus on for the entire year?
Make it big. Make it unattainable. But, make
Theme your year
In 2014, I arrived in Iowa to kick-off an
annual marketing meeting for a company
that sells million-dollar printing presses to
printers around the world. As I stepped into
the cavernous print shop where the event
would take place, I marveled at the machines
I also wondered why a printer manufacturer
decided to host his annual marketing meeting
at a client’s shop 1,000 miles away from their
As the Vice President of Marketing stood up
to address his team he proclaimed 2015 to be
“The Year of the Customer.” “First-hand client
and customer insight will drive every single
one of our marketing and sales activities this
year,” he stated. “Every single one.”
Over the next year, his team would get
closer to their clients and customers than
ever before. That team planned a “listening
tour” where the marketing staff traveled
around the world to glean product insight
that resulted in their most successful year in
the company’s 80-year history.
What’s your theme for 2019?
Use some outside inspiration
One often overlooked item that transforms
annual meetings from the tactical to the
transcendent is the use of outside inspiration.
At a little company planning event in Rhode
Island, I watched as every single one of the 23
employees arrived at the meeting with a copy
of Content, INC by Joe Pulizzi.
As the team sat down to hear the CEO
kick-off the two-day event, I realized that
these books weren’t new. Some attendees
had plastered sticky notes throughout the
book; others had dog-eared page after page.
Still, others had highlighted passage after
passage. “Is this an annual meeting, or a book
club?” I thought to myself. Even the CEO’s
copy looked tired and beat-up.
I came to learn that the entire company,
every single employee, had read Content, INC
and they’d been instructed to come to the
annual planning event ready to apply what
they’d learned in the book to their business
selling medical supplies.
Two amazing things happened that day.
First, the whole company had a common
vernacular and set of examples, stories, and
case studies to discuss and apply to their
business. And second, an incredible energy
and infectious sense of optimism drove the
team to consider and present incredibly
creative ideas for their next year.
YOU BRING IN
WATCH A MOVIE OR
EVEN READ THE
SAME BOOK BRING
TO THE TEAM.
Ask yourself, what can you use to
inspire your team to grow in new ways?
Let your team plot their course
If you’ve set a clear vision, themed your
year, and provided some outside inspiration,
you’ve done your job as a marketing leader.
Now, it’s time to let your team chart the
course. Remember, the most successful
marketing leaders use their annual planning
event to focus their team’s professional
development. You’ve set them up for success;
now it’s time for you to step back and ask
them to plan HOW they’re going to improve
If this is the year you want your team to fill
their “ROI blind spot,” you want them to put a
plan in place to do just that. If you’ve themed
the year as “The Year of the Customer”
how, exactly, are they going to get closer
and closer to the center of your client’s
everyday experience and what impact do
you expect that to have? If you’ve inspired
them with some outside thinking to ignite
their creativity, how exactly are they going to
explore the ideas you’ve sparked?
Your job isn’t to make the plan for them
it’s to guide and shape the activities,
So, this year, instead of asking your team
to set their goals and objectives in a vacuum,
instead of asking them to come prepared to
share their key learnings from 2018, instead of
creating an extended version of your weekly
team marketing meeting, set yourself, your
business, and your team up for unparalleled
Ask yourself, where do I (and my team) need
to grow if we’re going to be more successful
tomorrow than we are today?
ANDREW DAVIS is a bestselling author
and internationally acclaimed keynote
speaker. Before building and selling a
thriving digital marketing agency, Andrew
produced for NBC’s Today Show, worked
for The Muppets in New York and wrote
for Charles Kuralt. He’s appeared in the
New York Times, Forbes, the Wall Street
Journal, and on NBC and the BBC. Davis
has crafted documentary films and
award-winning content for tiny start-ups
and Fortune 500 brands.
Recognized as one of the industry’s “Jaw-
Dropping Marketing Speakers,” Andrew is
a mainstay on global marketing influencer
lists. Wherever he goes, Andrew Davis
puts his infectious enthusiasm and
magnetic speaking style to good use
teaching business leaders how to grow
their businesses, transform their cities,
and leave their legacy.