Marketing Advice for Young Marketers

I get to speak to lots of students and young marketing professionals working their way through their career. People associate me with the business of marketing, so I get emails and calls from friends, family, and friends of friends — can you give my son/daughter/nephew some advice about their marketing career?

I’m so thankful when I get a chance to help someone. It is a real privilege.

Find Your Happy

Can you find happiness and joy in the daily marketing work you get to do? Whether you love to write, design, be strategic, promote, speak or analyze data, what type of work fulfills your creative being?
  • For me, I love to learn something new by asking questions, reading fresh perspectives and observing a remarkably intelligent approach to solving a problem. When I read a blog, listen to a podcast or engage in a seminar with marketing professionals who know things that I don’t know, I’m delighted. I love to learn and have always tried to make my work a learning place for me.
  • I love to be challenged to find a unique way to communicate a message, a story or the essence of a new product in an approach that doesn’t look or feel like marketing. Once I understand a challenge, thinking about unusual ways to solve the problem allows me to exercise my creative juices and to find an unexpected solution.
  • I’m happy when I get to craft words or phrases that express the essence of an idea that someone has spent an hour explaining. If I can sum it up in 3 words, I’m thrilled. If I can do it with one word, I’m delirious. Nothing gives me more pleasure than to find a pun or smart play on words that tell a bigger story. From creating brand names, taglines to product names to ad copy — I’m happy playing with words.
  • I’m happy when I get to work with professional designers, videographers, wordsmith or web designers who through one small tweak makes something great into something extraordinary. I’m currently working on a fun project with a great agency, and together we have a multi-touch marketing campaign that I’m confident serving my clients needs for awareness, generating leads and defining their brand.
  • It is pure joy to me when I get to connect two people from different worlds, and they both get something valuable that helps them in their work to succeed. Networking has always been a daily passion for me. I meet at least one new person every day and over 30 years, have tracked those relationships. Often, the joy of making a connection or reconnection is fulfilling because it is helping someone achieve their goals. I look at it as a form of paying it forward.
  • I love listening to a problem that a company or brand has from not getting noticed or too few leads and see how I can help them solve their problem with a series of rather simple steps. If I can take something complicated and simplify it — there is a smile on my face. My brain doesn’t function well around complexity. I love simple.
  • I enjoy listening to brand managers with challenges, so I fully understand the context and complexity of the issue they face. And then, being able to recommend a strategic solution to achieve their goals. Solving strategic problems is like 3-dimensional chess. Few things are more satisfying than studying how other companies work and finding unexpected joy in an alternative strategic direction.

All of these things make me happy. And, fortunately, over my career, I got to find something every day, in the marketing universe, which made me happy (and satisfied and proud).

Know what makes you happy

The simple advice I give young marketers in the early stages of their marketing careers is to know what makes you happy.

Then, find an opportunity to do it as often as possible. Don’t settle for getting to do something you love at work once a month. If you hate your daily work, find some new options to see if they’ll bring you everyday happiness.

There is so much more risk in doing nothing than in doing something new. There is nothing worse than the daily grind of unhappiness and lack of fulfillment.

Find a way to bring that joy to each day.

How are you finding your happy each and every day at work?


Need coaching help with your career or marketing challenges. Work with a content marketing professional. Coffee or wine may be required to keep me happy. Text or call me at 919 720 0995 or email me at jeffslater@themarketingsage.com

Photo by Anthony Ginsbrook on Unsplash