At my last corporate job, we undertook a several hundred thousand dollar website redesign project with an outside agency.
The agency had a “strategist” on their team who helped wireframe the website based on our business goals.
The strategist’s main job was to match our company’s business goals with user experience best practices and industry standards.
For any decision we had to make, he was able to show us examples of what other companies in the same/similar industries were doing. He’d explain the pros and cons of doing things each way, educating us about how best to make decisions.
It struck me as interesting just how much research and examples he had ready to show us.
It seemed like a lot of his work was borrowing good examples from similar industries to inform the design of our website.
There’s obviously a lot more to strategy than copying and iterating off a bunch of examples. But if you want to create a marketing plan or strategy, it’s not the worst idea to have examples at the ready.
Good strategists and planners are researchers.
They gather knowledge and examples and have it ready to show clients. Not to convince them that their ideas are good, but to educate them about why their ideas are right for certain situations.
If you want to sell strategic marketing services, be someone who does a lot of research.
Find examples. Keep them in a file and have them ready to present next time you want to educate your clients on a decision.
Not to convince your clients, but to educate them.
An educated client is a satisfied one. Your work will be better, too.