What I Think
I think no kid ever wanted to grow up to be a marketer, but some marketers end up pretty darned happy anyway. Why? Because they've discovered that they really don't have to spend their lives sliding around in snake oil just to make a buck. Instead, they can listen for the truth, know it when they hear it, and shout it to the world.
Maybe kids wouldn't mind doing that some day, yes?
Where I Came From
For 11 years in Washington DC, I ran a 35-person design and communications firm with another creative genius, Jennifer Gibson. Those were the days of long lunches, endless nights, and lots and lots of breezy headlines and witty ad copy. It was the beginning of the Clinton Administration, the dawning of global warming awareness, and the genesis of the world wide web as a marketing vehicle. Working in an Agency was seriously intense. The question on everybody's mind was: “How do I get heard in the world? Right now?” From the Smithsonian to the World Wildlife Fund, from AT&T to Intuit, my clients just wanted to be noticed, and I found inventive ways to do just that; learning the language of the market, moving mountains, and growing mindshare.
From there, I shifted my focus to corporations and began a 12 year stint as marketing executive in high tech and professional services companies. From dot.com, to dot.bomb, from merger madness to boardroom in-fighting, I learned that no matter what, no matter when, no matter how, the only thing that really mattered was sales. It was in the line of executive fire that I learned to sell more, faster, yesterday -- and found smart strategies to do just that.
But here’s the thing. While both the market focus and the sales focus have merit, it’s just not the whole picture. True, revenue growth comes from good marketing, and surely from increased sales, but neither of these will sustain more than a blip on a P&L statement without an additional focus on the organization; its structure, processes, people, products, services, strategies, management, and mostly? Its true value. I launched Wallace Consulting in 2006 to help companies identify their true value, align it with their actions, and get the word out to the world. Today, my job is to help organizations, and the people within them, grow.