How Focused Is Your Marketing?

Did you catch any of the Launch Festival? If not, there’s a lot of video from the event that’s worth checking out. It's one of a handful of important incubating events where young tech startups go to get in front of investors, partners and media.

One real standout video with direct relevance to marketers is an interview between event MC Jason Calacanis and Chamath Palihapitiya, formerly head of Facebook mobile and now a VC championing startup companies with game changing social purpose – companies poised to solve some of the world biggest problems. Check out the link below for the full interview (streamed live, by the way, during the event with very little latency, very well done).

For one minute, from 4:30 to 5:30, Chamath lays out a vision for “how to get things” done in organizations – a major hurdle for marketers who are often tasked to create many different business results to (often) the detriment of all of them, along with juggling the needs of multiple internal constituencies.

He explains that focus on one primary goal (in Facebook’s case, user adoption of mobile), has three major benefits: it (1) constrains “optionality”, (2) forces clarity of thinking and (3) prevents anecdotal, non-expert point of views that sabotage projects.

Example: at 6:15 he explains how AOL in 2001 had all the pieces in place to create the first online music store, but couldn’t get everything together and lost out to Apple.

For marketers the same lessons apply: focus on solving one, massive, all-important problem – be that sales, user adoption, employee buy-in and any other metric you can think of –and you can build great things.

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