Jason Baptiste recently wrote a wonderful post on the OnStartUps blog titled, Why Every Entrepreneur Should Write and 9 Tips To Get Started. While the post was aimed at the startup/entrepreneurial world, I think it can be easily extended to all product marketers. Being an effective communicator is a core marketing skill and an even more important one for product marketers.
Being able to develop a story and then translate it across all the various channels – media, web, blogs, social – is what in my mind sets apart a good product marketer from and a great one.
Following Jason’s 7 entrepreneurial reasons for writing, here’s my take on why all product marketers should write:
- You Will Meet Other Smart People – this one is pretty straight forward but may be a surprise for some. Writing and publishing online gives you a chance to interact with people and build relationships beyond your standard network. Bottom line, having a diverse network of smart marketers is always a good thing.
- Your Experiences Will Provide Insightful Knowledge – the most successful marketers I know have had two things in common. They never stopped learning and they were always generous with advice. We all have successes and failures that others can learn from and sharing helps the overall marketing community.
- You Will Establish Domain Expertise - no question about it this is an important one. Whether you on the executive path or just getting started, there is now an expectation that you will have a “digital ready” skill set. Case in point, Hubspot’s recent article, How to crush the competition with inbound marketing, calls out the need for hiring digital ready marketers.
- It Helps Build Dedication - Unfortunately, writing is hard. By dedicating the time necessary to write, rewrite, and publish, you are building a habit. This is a step towards becoming a life long learner and a better product marketer.
- Your Communication Skills Will Get Exponentially Better – how can you not want to be a better communicator? Whether it is trying to draft powerful product messaging or to communicate with your sales team or customers, the better the writing the better the results. In a recent HBR article, Eight Ways to Communicate Your Strategy More Effectively, Georgia Everse points out that not all not all messages are created equal and that you must choose different approaches based on your purpose. Wether you are trying to inspire, educate, or enforce, your message must be “simple, but deep in meaning.” The only way to get better at writing these types of messages is to practice. I can’t think of a better way to sum it up than with this thought on communications from Simon Sinek,
- You Will Build An Audience That Will Give You Candid Feedback – have a new idea or a concept you would like help developing?As you start to build a following, you will more opportunity to bounce ideas off your audience and ask for help.
- It is A Rapid Accelerator Of Serendipity – you never know when that random comment or feedback could turn into a something more – maybe a new friend, maybe a speaking gig, maybe a new career opportunity. All I know is that if you don’t get out there and do the work, the odds of something happening are greatly reduced.
Last, it is worth pointing out that by writing and publishing, you continually get a chance for others to get to know you and see what a good communicator you are. You might really be a good writer, but without something to point, you are asking people to take your word for instead of being able to see your words on their own.