No matter the weather, today I shall wear a hat. Though not just one but many. I’m sure you’ve heard the old saying, “Business owners wear many hats”, well, the same goes for marketers. My days in the industry are still young, with just three years under my belt, but I can confirm that the number of hats that match my belt is how I’ve learned so much.
Some hats are sparkly, some are comfortable, others are… well, my least favourite option. Let me share with you a few.
The Consumers Hat
This is my favourite hat to wear. It requires a shift in perspective and goes with most of our work. When we put the consumer’s hat on, we also put ourselves in their shoes – the two must match, or the outfit isn’t going to attract the right people. Let’s say our target audience is a middle-aged woman named Sarah, a business owner who cares about her career, appearance, and social life. She also enjoys reading and exploring the outdoors in her spare time. What attracts Sarah is not the same as what would attract Joel, a man in his early twenties who studies accounting, plays the guitar and lives at home. I get so much enjoyment from stepping outside of my own head to explore instead what Sarah and Joel might like to read, view or watch. Wearing the consumer’s hat makes you realise everyone will receive your message differently. Ultimately, this hat must be worn over almost every other marketing hat.
The Sales Hat
Not the most comfortable hat to wear, I must admit. When you know that you’re being sold to – it’s a turn-off. That’s the kicker; marketers are there to sell stuff – but how can we do it without sounding like a tacky salesman? This hat requires meticulous phrasing, intentional thought, and a warning of caution.
The Finance Hat
If you know me, the finance hat doesn’t match my style – in other words, numbers are not my strong point. But it’s part of the job. This hat is required when we budget, invoice, and calculate time – and thankfully, it’s not an everyday hat. Tell me I’m not the only marketer who joined the industry just thinking about the creative tasks – ha!
The Brand Hat
Ensuring that we are always “on-brand”. The brand hat is worn on almost every task to ensure that visual content, tone of voice, values, and overall messaging align with the brand’s identity. Everything from colour schemes, typography, and design aesthetics to the language (is it formal, casual, humorous, or serious?). When we market for various clients, this hat could be re-decorated up to four times daily to suit each brand.
The Tech Hat
Keeping up with digital trends and tech updates is crucial to delivering successful marketing. Not going to lie; this hat can also be a total time waster – when technology goes wrong, that is.
The Creative Hat
Brands won’t stand out without this hat, and the whole point of marketing is to capture attention. The creative hat goes beyond traditional hats – it finds unique ways that differentiate brands from competitors. We wear this hat when creating eye-catching visual content and verbal content– catchy slogans, taglines, and messages that leave an impact. And when you nail the two – your outfit goes from ordinary to extraordinary. Creative marketing also includes telling stories (which could be a hat on its own) that capture emotions, builds connection, and makes messages more memorable. We love wearing this hat!
The Analyst Hat
The analyst hat gets worn when it’s time to track and measure the performance of marketing projects, campaigns, and tasks. It helps us do better, know when things aren’t working and celebrate the things that are.
This hat helps us plan, prioritise and complete jobs within deadlines. It involves communicating with the right people and collaborating on tasks that require different skill sets to achieve the best outcome. “Fashionably late” because of an outfit dilemma doesn’t go well in business – so we must not forget about this hat.
If you have trouble managing your hats, set yourself up for success by recognising what time of the day each hat works best for you. My analyst hat fits best in the morning when the brain is fresh, whilst my creative hat feels good in the afternoon – the brain is tired, feeling random and more likely to come up with ideas. Otherwise, where possible, give the hat you don’t like to someone else – collaboration makes the dream work.