Hire the Right Type of VP Marketing — Or You’ll Just End Up With a Bunch of Blue Pens with Your…
Jason M. Lemkin

Why “Demand Generation” A Fantasy for Start-ups

Most companies’ products are at an earlier stage than implied by two-options of Corporate Marketing VS. Demand Generation and stated here. If you are considering a demand-generation platform and your product is early stage, read this first.

Time machine forward a bit and image you just produced some killer content that gets tons of shares, as reported by your wiz-bang social posting and analytics platform. You did it! Right? Maybe. What did the shares deliver? Did it get into the right hands or showed your product to be too risky to invest in? Do you have prospective clients or client insights? What question or outcome did you intend to produce — and was that best next step? If you did reach prospects, did your firm come off as to0 young, too Silicon Valley centric, too low-tech, not ‘hot looking’ enough, or too much or not enough “whatever” for the audience? What did you learn from the campaign that will make your product better or position your next campaign to deliver greater benefits?

Content creation can only turn into demand generation when you have product and market clarity enough to know what you can get from the next campaign, and fine-tune your following actions. So, before jumping into an analysis to weigh the benefits of Hubspot vs. Marketo vs. Infusionsoft vs. Eloqua vs. Pardot… and figuring out how to hire for a social marketing messiah, be sure you have great traction on product marketing. (Great flow with product management too). Clean feature set, crisp value proposition… and a very good picture of how to engage each market segments at the right times.

Don’t know how to do all this? Use The Google, and consider investing in experts support to clarify and validate your first and best market which may well leverage your products highest natural advantages. THEN you will be set-up great opportunities for direct marketing and demand generation.

Another point of consideration. There is nothing better than real facetime with your target market to hone features and messages. So get out there and spend as much of your time with people that you believe are your best prospects… listen, listen, listen with critical ears. Have fun learning and getting closer to a killer product THEN generate demand… and eventually buying tons of pens for branding ☺.