Final revisions are underway at MindTree to complete our 2010-11 planning. Of course, that means me and my marketing team are also busy finalizing our marketing plans. Clearly, there are a few central themes that are emerging from each plan.
Demand Generation and Brand Development are the “needs of the hour” for MindTree. We’ve read it in all the plans from our business heads. We’re probably not too different than other companies in our industry in this regard. Marketing is trying to figure out the right mix of channels to focus on, based on past results and future promise: channels such as the Web site; industry-specific events and webinars; public relations; search marketing; analyst relations; and email campaigns to name a few.
When you get right down to it however, the success or failure of all this planning boils down to thought leadership. How successful will we be in creating thought leadership (industry content) that will help us differentiate MindTree? All of our go-to-market activities are contingent on fresh content created on a regular basis to express our points of view and client case studies. Thought Leadership “feeds” the channels that drive demand and, in absence of a product, thought leadership also positions the brand. It becomes the lynchpin for all that we do through the go-to-market channels mentioned above.
On my trip over to India the week of February 15th, I finished reading Jessie Paul’s book, “No Money Marketing.” In it, she talks about Thought Leadership being one of 4 key channels that services companies should use to market themselves, particularly if you’re on a tight budget (and who isn’t these days?) Jessie goes on to talk about how in other parts of the word, a “Chief Thought Leader” or “Chief Evangelist” is a full-time role, but not in Asia Pacific. Maybe it is time that it did.