Lotus Forgot Series: How not to have a roadshow event.
Here is a work of brilliance. I just received an email announcing an IBM roadshow event in Seattle. While it isn’t specifically about Lotus software, it covers Websphere and cloud computing.
Here it is: http://www-01.ibm.com/software/websphere/events/impact/icty_events.html
The brilliance is that it’s only a week away. Too bad, I already have plans and now it’s too late to change them.
It’s particularly humorous that the website says “Check back often to find an event in your geography and register for an event near you.” Check back often? I don’t think I could even find this URL again once I leave it. Haven’t you heard of subscriptions so I don’t have to “check back often” to get the information I need?
As well-connected as I am, if I’m just now finding out about this from someone connected to IBM marketing and customer support, I expect very few people know about this event. Is this IBM’s way of “proving” they can’t sell in Seattle against Microsoft?
In the end, the purpose of marketing is to sell. Period. The final goal is not brand recognition. It’s not to make customers feel good. The final goal of marketing is to sell. Roadshows are an element of marketing. Whether the method is by showing off products directly or more of an infomercial to help existing customers use the product more effectively, if it doesn’t increase sales, it failed. IBM, once again, you failed. Go read the book “Your Marketing Sucks” by Mark Stevens. While it is not just about IBM, it does reveal the truth about your marketing.
But who am I to think I know marketing better than IBM? If you work for a company with half a million employees, you must already know everything there is to know about marketing. Your ego would demand nothing less. You no longer need to continue professional development. Why waste time reading books on marketing and sales and human behavior? Like GM and the Roman Empire, you’re too big to fail. After all, IBM stock is at an all-time high. You must be doing everything right, yes?
No. What you’re overlooking is where you COULD BE. In sales terms, you’re leaving money on the table. My mantra is “Companies don’t buy software. People do.” And along with that goes “Companies don’t sell software. People do.”
Before you categorically decline to read this book to further your knowledge, consider what you have lose, then consider what you have to gain. For that matter, I recommend this book to all of my readers. I’m sure many of you still read good old-fashioned books. If you read it, I would like to hear from you.