A Marketing parallel to navigate today’s chaotic online marketing

The long and short of its work by Les Binet and Peter Field. It is classic for a reason. The crux of that work is “A Brand needs both short term and long term marketing activities for strongest and sustainable growth” 


The only difference is, that the plot was based on “advertising” as the most important marketing activity. It was stretched to a great extent that traditional marketers have been asking to add advertising as their marketing investment. However, today we are living in a completely different marketing landscape. If advertising is not used at the right stage, it will still be a spend and not an investment. This means, that for to advertising bring results, it demands adequate preparatory work. Refer to How Financial institutions are tapping the opportunity? It is necessary to have a content repository before initiating your paid ad campaigns.


It is also not uncommon to see, Organisations are one-sided, focusing only on the short term, the pressure is such and the effect is also proportionate. The day you stop, you dont exist. All of this is well summarised in the essay by Tom Roach.


It’s never been more important to make every marketing $ work as hard as it possibly can. We’ve never been more aware that without short-term success there may not even be a long-term for some of our brands. And the best way of securing both will be to embrace the fertile middle-ground that lies in combining the power of short and long-term effects.


Long-term growth always has its roots in the short term. The two are connected, influence each other, and if you get the two workings perfectly in harmony together, you’ll achieve the strongest, most sustainable growth possible.


But we so often miss out on maximising growth in this way because of our binary belief systems, the organisational siloes we inhabit, the different job titles we have, the different channels and formats we tend to use and the different metrics we try to optimise.


It’s important to say that long-term growth isn’t just achieved by adding up a series of short-term effects. It’s more complicated than simply being additive: it’s a multiplicative, compound effect, which starts slowly but strengthens over time.



The short term is sales enablement activities and the long term is brand marketing activities. Things get much better if we put together both into the funnel.


This is the classic marketing funnel,

In principle, this simple funnel remain unchanged for more than a century. 


One main difference between then and now is, earlier it was “Attention” now it is “Awareness.” That’s why the earlier ads were more about creativity, and copywriting thus Attention. Now, it is more about Awareness. You have to let your audience know about your existence without selling anything. ie; share something helpful to them. First, be helpful. 


The rule to put online ads is getting stronger day by day:


The first exposure of your brand should not be through ads


Let’s put together the long-term, short term and the funnel into a framework and see how it looks,



What I’ve done is split the funnel into horizontal bays, so that we will be able to fill it meaningfully. I’ve also broadly split the 2 categories the long-term and Short-term.


It is not very uncommon to see organisations focusing on the right side alone.



On the other side, I dont disagree that organisations have to start from the short-term bay.


As soon as possible, organisations have to address the area that does the Long term effects to make the short-term efforts bring results, continuously.



The funnel split bay items are not to be taken as exact ones but as indicative ones. In practice, they all overlap in unexpected ways. You may also have to add more items into appropriate bays as a business may demand.


The relationship between Long and short-term effects is brilliantly summed up in the below slide,



The idea is to have items that cater for the entire funnel.



It’s not uncommon to see sales and marketing are handled by a single team in organisations but both should have different objectives hence different teams and heads.


If we put it together all, here is what I get.




If you tilt the above framework 90 degrees you can see the Marketing and Sales Parallel like in the visual below. And, Sales perform better when we take care of Marketing activities adequately.

The Marketing and Sales parallel diagram



No brand is afforded to focus on one over the other. It is both and so I call it as


The Marketing and Sales parallel


Note: Les Binet suggests a 60/40 balance. 60 being Brand building activities and 40 being sales activations. I have mentioned it as 50% each for easy understanding.


Thus 2 compass – 1 for the short term, for the day/week/month depending on the business nature and ticket size. The other for the month/quarter/year. Both should have different objectives, and the way you measure, and the outcome should also be different.


To adapt a robust marketing approach, contact us. 

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