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How to fail and nail at the marketing automation

Over the course of two months I have received emails from this awesome guy called Greg. He asks for my attention and wants to discuss his company ValueAdd.

The funny thing here is that he sends the exact same emails to my colleague Jaakko as well. Here is the last email I received from him.

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I really like his style and don’t feel all that bothered about them. I actually feel curious to see what I find in his email next week.

The only problem is this. I never subscribed to his emails that most obviously are a part of an automatic marketing engine. And since this is not a mailing list either, there is no way to unsubscribe.

Greg does save a whole lot of time by automating this for sure. But here is the paradox. He expects me to invest time in building this relationship and at the same time he invests his time elsewhere.

I get easily interested by new ideas if there was a benefit for me.

Dear Greg. If you really want to nail it by marketing automation, here are a few examples to spark my interest.

Give something before asking for the attention. It could be anything worth the while of people you approach.

Can you find an interesting study that might interest me? Or could you give me a business analysis report or maybe a whitepaper on how to build a marketing automation? Oh. And a benchmark of our company site would be cool and even more personal way of getting an answer for sure.

It makes no difference where we ask for a service or help or attention. The same principle applies.

By giving something worthwhile first, we increase the odds of co-operation significantly.

The microscope and the telescope

This is a photo I took of a brick wall. You see it is white.

If you looked closer you might notice it is not the whole truth. It actually is a brick wall that is only painted white.

And if you looked even closer you might notice it has a texture. It’s not all white. The texture makes the light spread unevenly and there are shades of grey too.

And if you looked even closer you might notice the small cracks on the paint as well. And the strokes of the brush. And the specks of dust that are already covering it.

You could look even closer. You might begin to understand that it is not the paint but a delicate combination of solvent, binder, pigment and additives which covers the wall.

There is no limit to how deep you could go into it.

Nothing we see is just the thing we see. It becomes a different thing when added the components of for example distance and time.

A microscope and a telescope are both tools you could use.

Develop your awareness to know which one you need right now.

The testing report we forgot

The most important skill of a software tester is communication. Or at least majority of the conference attendees thought so at the EuroSTAR here.

What I’ve noticed however is that while testing professionals are good at bug centric communication, they easily forget the more important part.

Testers should learn to tell a story of how the results came to be. Easy way to experiment on your skill would be to answer this.

What would you report if no bugs were found in the session today?

Stop now. Really think about it for 60 seconds!

The story could begin by letting others in on the activities we engaged during this round.

We might want to tell them for example about the time allocated to activities like configuration, meetings, investigations, bug reporting and coverage.

But can you elaborate or even better, show which areas were covered and which were left out this time?

It’s obvious once we stop and think about it. But hard when we are engaged in the daily flow of action points.

That’s why I’d invite you now to outline a new storyline for the moment the limelight hits you the next time.

A pen, a paper and a short bullet journal might just make the difference for you to make a difference. So. 5 minutes.

Shall we?

Secret to victory

Marcus Aurelius once said that the secret to victory lies in the organization of the non-obvious.

If the secret to victory is so obvious, how then should we execute on it?

Usually we are way too trenched in the daily flow of action and outcome, the obvious part. So the very first thing we need to learn, is to see the non-obvious.

One way the non-obvious starts to emerge under our eyes comes once we learn to take a step back. To detatch ourselves from the situation at hand. To pause for an overview.

At that moment we begin to see the structure behind the content. The structure is something that lingers everywhere just at the outer reaches of our perception.

There always is the wine and the bottle.

Structure is the defining factor of outcome. Insinde the trenches of daily action we tend to re-create the outcome we always get. We attempt to fill the same container with a new content.

Look at the structure of your day in the calendar. Look at the structure of your route to work. Look at the structure of everyday conversation at the family dinner. Look at the structure of a daily stand up meeting. Or the session of your exploratory testing.

Step back and see the non-obvious. Suddenly a new opportunity closes in on your reach.

The change begins not by focusing on the content, it begins by recrafting the structure.