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The Must-Have Marketing Book for a Business Building Communication Strategy

The Must-Have Marketing Book for a Business Building Communication Strategy

Martha Guidry

1. About the Author:

Martha Guidry is the principal at The Rite Concept, based in Avon, Connecticut and the author of “Marketing Concepts that Win! Save Time, Money and work Crafting Concepts Right the First Time.” The Rite Concept uses a flexible combination of qualitatively driven consumer understanding, hands-on learning, and ideation to help clients develop and optimize concepts for market. Martha brings more than 15 years of combined brand management, concept development, and research experience to each of her projects. After completing her MBA at Harvard, Martha spent 6 years in consumer marketing for Procter & Gamble and Hasbro Toys, prior to starting her own company

Clients perceive Martha as an unusually dynamic, creative, and resourceful consultant with the business know-how to drive their businesses to winning results. She can provide anything from a “complete package”—ideation through concept development—to a specific investigation into one particular part of the development process. Martha has developed concepts in a variety of industries for organizations such as Arby’s, DuPont, Bush’s Beans, Amway, Pizza Hut, Dial and the Tuck School of Business. She is a past board member for the Qualitative Research Consultant’s Association (QRCA) and the Connecticut chapter of the American Marketing Association.

2. Synopsis:

A marketing concept is the foundational building block for any successful brand, product, service or business, yet many professionals struggle to identify and develop effective concepts. Marketing Concepts that Win! is the invaluable guide to business professionals who (should) develop marketing concepts. The author shares foundational knowledge and essential groundwork prior to development efforts then employs numerous examples and tips to carefully walk the reader through the various stages of crafting a powerful marketing concept.

3. Why Wrote the Book:

I wrote the book because I could not find any resource for my clients who had not be trained by one by one of the big packaged good companies in classic concept development. In my 15 years as a consultant, I constantly ran into clients that did not understand the fundamentals of a good concept and how to write effective one. The book is the natural culmination of all the “on-the-job” training and concept writing I did for clients in my consultant/research practice. While I believe there is an art and science to good concept writing, I wanted to break it down into digestible pieces to help all the professionals, whether working at a large institution or in a one person office, become smarter at developing the keystone to any product, service, business or brand strategy.

 

4. Benefits of Reading the Book:

The book provides a complete guide to helping any marketer, market researcher, research & development professional, or business owner understand the importance of having an own able, single-minded concept for their product or service. In addition, thru numerous examples and tips the reader will learn how to write successful positioning concept.

Do you have a blog? I have been writing in my blog http://www.ConceptTalk.com since 2007. The blog is targeted toward business people/entrepreneurs who need concepts and the consultants who help those clients with their concept development. Generally, I deal with issues I’ve either seen in my practice or have been asked when I present at a conference. I keep the communication quite simple and rather formulaic with 3-5 bullets that you should think about surrounding the particular challenge. This makes it very easy for any reader of my blog to find some nice actionable steps they can take to remedy their issue. It is quite interesting, but over time I’ve learned that regardless of the industry very similar issues arise. That’s why I have been successful working with a myriad of clients from agricultural fertilizer to facial care products.

Do you do your own marketing or PR? Yes, I have always done my own marketing and PR with the exception of my first book. I hired a publicist to help me find the right industry contacts, as I was not all that familiar with the places I should look for publicity opportunities. Over the years, I have worked very hard to build my business profile. This was done through a combination of using social networks, presenting at conferences, blogging, writing articles, participating in industry SIGs/forums, and networking. Given that my book is about creating a marketing concept – I created one for myself. I am known in the industry as “The Concept Queen”. This has been a memorable and sticky idea with my potential client base. If someone can’t remember my name, they can always Google “Concept Queen” and find me at the top of the list. This is when you know you’ve made some traction with marketing idea.

What is a good PR strategy for a budding author? I think it is very important to plant some seed prior to trying to break into the world of writing. For example, I was very effective at writing articles on my topic for the past 5+ years for various trade periodicals prior to writing my book. As such, I had some brand recognition and could easily approach these venues for a book review, which several have promised to do. Separately, I have done a number of speaking engagements and selling books in the back of the room is very effective if you are a good presenter. The key is that you must understand where your strength lies – if you dislike standing in front of an audience, don’t speak or if you enjoy being more social and building relationships, then networking or social media might work better. It is not a one size fits all type of approach.

The Must-Have Marketing Book for a Business Building Communication StrategyDo you tweet, Facebook or use any other social media?

I use twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Since my target is marketers, market researchers and business owners, LinkedIn has been the most effective means. LinkedIn is the most professional of these networks for a business book target audience. I have a personal Facebook which I don’t really use for business promotion, but do have one for my company. I have not tried particularly hard to develop my twitter or company page connections. It takes a bit of time and one must keep up with and contribute to others in order to receive the reciprocal followers. There is only so much time in a day! Here are my links if you’d like to check them out:

http://www.linkedin.com/in/theconceptqueenmarthaguidry

http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Rite-Concept/133017065048

http://twitter.com/ – !/marthaguidry

What is the one thing that you did right?

In terms of writing the book, it was really important to schedule time with myself to do it. I would block certain hours on my calendar to write. In some weeks, I blocked up to 8 hours and in some weeks, none. A lot depended on what was going on with my consulting practice and my level of inspiration. Writing a book can be fun, but a little lonely. So committing the time on my calendar really got me to buckle down in the home stretch.

What is the best advice you never got?

Professionally, I would say I should have started to build my profile earlier in my business. I did not reposition and rename my company until 2005, partly because I hadn’t owned a particular expertise at the time. I would have been much smarter to differentiate myself earlier in my company’s life – I started it in 1999. Since that time, As I mentioned in the earlier question about marketing, creating a repertoire of potential client/referral contacts through different modalities has been a much easier way to sell. Since 2005, I was always consistent with my message, so all the pieces triangulated into my well-established “Concept Queen” positioning.

What books have you read that you would recommend to others?

  • Writing Nonfiction – Dan Poynter
  • How to Write a Book Proposal – Michael Larsen
  • Book Yourself Solid – Michael Porter
  • Selling Blue Elephants – Howard Moskowitz and Alex Gofman
  • The One Minute Salesperson – Spencer Johnson and Larry Wilson

And of course, my book!

 

 

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