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Argentum's blog, Marketing Op-Ed highlights interesting, real-world examples of marketing with a little bit of opinion thrown in.  It's written by Susan Silver, President of Argentum Strategy Group, with the occasional guest blogger added to the mix.

It's updated once a month, and we would love to hear what you think!

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Best Marketing Job Spec EVER

Friday, May 2, 2014   0 Comments - General Marketing  

As someone who has been involved with marketing in some way for more than 20 years, I have seen a whole lot of marketing job specs in my time.

Without a doubt the VP of Marketing job spec that GiveForward post last week is the best I have ever seen. And it’s not just my opinion. I posted the job to my LinkedIn network and have never seen more enthusiasm for a job posting, including:
- Too bad I’m not a marketing person, I want this job!
- Love this job, wish it were in Baltimore!
- Best job spec I have ever read
- Now THIS is how you write a job spec

Not only does the spec clearly lay out the obligatory qualifications the company is looking for, more importantly it clearly communicates the personality and culture of the organization. Tellingly, it starts with an “About You” section that has nothing to do with qualifications and everything to do with the kind of human being they want to join the GiveForward team. Read More -›

Top 10 Entrepreneurial Research Mistakes, Part 1: Which Methodology to Use?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014   0 Comments - General Marketing,Research  

Being an entrepreneur sometimes feels like you’re playing the guitar while you’ve got a tambourine on top of your head, a harmonica in your mouth, and cymbals between your knees.

It therefore follows that there are many things that entrepreneurial companies of all sizes take a crack at doing themselves, even if they’ve never done it before. Customer and market research is often one of these areas.

Because most entrepreneurial companies are not in a position to hire a market research professional, we recently created a basic how-to research class for 1871, Chicago’s tech incubator. While it was formally titled How To Conduct Effective Research, it’s really an overview of the Top Ten Research Mistakes Made By Entrepreneurs.

The most common research mistakes I encounter fall into three main camps:
- Research methodology selection
- The questions asked and the answer choices provided
- The care & feeding of respondents/participants

Today’s blog post addresses the first category, research methodology. This really boils down to how to decide whether you are going to conduct Quantitative or Qualitative research.

Mistake #1. Thinking Quant is better than Qual
While achieving statistical significance can be very useful, most of my clients don’t have easy, inexpensive access to 600 relevant potential respondents. That’s what would be necessary to get the bare minimum 30 responses required for results to be statistically significant, assuming a somewhat high 5% response rate.

Defining Your Competitive Set

Wednesday, March 26, 2014   0 Comments - General Marketing  

At the core of every positioning statement is the reason a product/service/brand is different and better than its competitors. Because of this, how you choose to define your competitive set is a critical piece of developing a compelling positioning statement.

Here’s a quick 3-minute video of how to strategically approach defining your own competitive set. It was filmed during a workshop Argentum gave at the University of Chicago’s Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship. Examples included two of our favorites, KRAFT Macaroni & Cheese and Chicago’s venerable Goodman Theatre. Watch the segment.