Ask someone to name all the things in life that annoy them, and cold calls will probably feature near the top of the list. Whether we're being offered compensation for mis-sold PPI or an accident we never had, or sales calls for products we don't want, cold calls can feel like a waste of our time and an invasion of our privacy - just how did they get our number in the first place?
Retail industry's worst kept secret is that promotional planning doesn't start with clear business objectives and robust strategy on how to get there based on piles and piles of shopper insight. Because everyone is "very busy" it is usually as sophisticated as 'let's do what we did last year and throw in some more deals in order to hit our like-for-likes'.
One of my favourite statistics of 2012 came in the form of a media release from Fournaise Marketing Group, who had discovered that 80% of CEOs "do not really trust and are not very impressed by the work done by marketers." To provide some context, 90% of the same CEOs claimed to trust and value the opinion and work of CFOs and CIOs. Ouch.
Do you love your profession, believe passionately in your product or service, but hate having to sell it? Did you qualify as a professional; develop your skills and expertise, only to discover that professional expertise is no longer enough, now you have to actually acquire clients? If so, you are probably what I call a reluctant sales person.
Businesses that once believed in segmenting the value chain, are beginning to understand that consistency is key to building momentum. As such, to continue being relevant in this world, PR needs to not only be clearly integrated with all marketing disciplines but also with historically business functions such as sales.