I thought the nature analogy was particularly relevant to Oregon restaurants and hotels as there is such consumer awareness in the Northwest around local, natural ingredients in restaurants and even hotel chains like Doubletree differentiate themselves in Portland as being the green hotel for business travelers. Additionally, like in nature where animals and their environment is all interconnected, Oregon farmers and food (like my restaurant marketing panelist Kim Malek of Salt and Straw ice cream) and beverage companies (like one of my other panelists Jamie Floyd – founder of Ninkasi Brewing) are all customers and suppliers for one another.
As marketers, we are overwhelmed. We’re constantly feeling like we should be doing more even though we are already stretched so thin. First, it was maintaining a great website, making sure it was search engine optimized, then it was building out an email marketing program, a PPC program, then Facebook and Twitter came along and we dove in, now there are dozens of new marketing channels that are being added to our marketing mix at a dizzying pace – Foursquare, Pinterest, Instagram, TripAdvisor, Yelp, LinkedIn, optimizing for mobile, and the list goes on and on.
As marketers, we need to start with our primary goal and, at every step, make sure our marketing activities map back to helping us achieve that goal. Ask “why?” at every turn. Often, so many of us are doing something new just to do it instead of being strategic about our efforts.