Episode 297: Show Notes
Hello everybody and welcome back to another episode of The Strategy Hour Podcast! Today our guest is Suzi Istvan from Splendidly Curious. Suzi is a brand strategist, marketing expert and has many years of experience working with a wide variety of different types of companies and organizations. She lives in upstate New York with her beautiful big family and we cannot wait to share this amazing conversation with y’all! Suzi is here to tell us about the roles of marketing director and integrator and how they can take your business from lighting up to burning hot! If your biz is currently small and just starting out or you are making a step up to the next level, trust us, this episode is going to help a ton!
The chat was amazing and enlightening for us and we gained so much just talking to Suzi, so we are sure there will be a treasure trove of stuff for you to mine in here! During the conversation, Suzi even interviews us a little bit, which was fun! We cover how to build and coordinate your team cleverly and finding that all important person who is as invested in your business as you are. This role, which Suzi and others have dubbed the integrator, can take a lot off of your hands and free up more time for you to explore and double down on your areas of genius. In the end, you are looking for someone who thinks of your business as their business and who can free up your mental load, so you can pursue all your dreams with more energy and vigor!
The Rise of the Integrator and Marketing Director
Until quite recently the common myth was that in order to be an entrepreneur you had to be a visionary. Suzi believes the story is starting to shift and there are a lot of different ways to run a business with your own particular set of gifts. Maybe you are more practical and not such a big ideas person or maybe you are good with strategy on the ground with the pieces you have. These are all relevant and useful skills and Suzi believes the magic is in finding the ways these pieces fit together and filling in the missing ones where you can. The role of the integrator, according to Suzi is to make the dreams that you and your business have, come true. Now Suzi also tell us that there are a few differences between a marketing director and an integrator but she would describe a marketing director as a type of integrator. She sees the part she often plays as a marketing director, she is not an HR person, she is not a systems person although those are part of her work at times. She works on social media, websites, core messaging, packaging and a whole lot more, in fact she touches everything that comes under the umbrella of marketing. But her main job and the job of your next marketing director is to map out the strategy for the big vision you have. Suzi believes that hiring the right person in the position can be such a game changer, they can see the gaps, make recommendations and edge you closer to your ideal setup!
Self-Taught Marketing and Outsourcing The Skill
A lot us business owners come into the game and slowly teach ourselves how to become marketing experts. It is often not our passion or particular skill but because of the requirements of online biz you kind of get a schooling along the way. Suzi actually believes that this makes people great at overseeing a marketing team or department because you know the job that you are hiring for. But it also means that you do not have to do that job yourself! You have to ask yourself what is it you do best and until you figure these out, your company will not grow in a meaningful way. You never have to feel guilty for paying someone to perform a job that you can perform yourself, it is just a question of freeing yourself up to do what is most important. Do not let your skill and passion hold back your company’s potential! If everyone has the thing that they can focus on, you will see the difference in your work but it does become harder to manage this balance as your biz grows and becomes a bigger thing. It is quite a different thing doing marketing for a cute baby business that is just starting out and then maintaining something that has been growing for the last few years and has continued to evolve and take different shapes. Suzi believes that in these situations, it is good to have time to reset, reassess and move forward from there. This is when it becomes essential to have someone in the role of the integrator.
Simplifying and Optimizing Your Business
One of the most important things Suzi works on with her clients is their brand pillars. This is something we have talked about a lot on the show before and most businesses have about three pillars that really lay our their vision and what they offer. If you are wondering about your own ask yourself what are the main messages you and your company are trying to communicate. Here at TCC our three pillars are to simplify growth strategies, educate on KPI-driven results and encourage women to show up as they are. Everything you do should come back to those pillars and once you are clear on what they are, doing a lot of work becomes easier. Content creation and batching can be a lot more straightforward and all of this should point towards at least one of your pillars. For Suzi, and us, this is where the fun stuff happens, when you have your outlines drawn you can do all the fun coloring in! Another tip from Suzi is to figure out what makes money right now and how to funnel as much as you can towards it. This means doubling down on what is good right now so that you can move onto something new with that momentum. A lot of what Suzi does is actually to simplify intelligently and do less rather than more. This can give you a whole lot more purpose, success and help you grow towards your dream!
Our Experiences of Directing at TCC. [0:04:10.8]
The Rise of the Integrator. [0:09:32.4]
Self-Taught Marketing and Outsourcing The Skill. [0:20:46.6]
Simplifying and Optimizing Your Business. [0:28:28.2]
Recycling and Reusing Content Smartly. [0:35:56.7]
Identify the bottlenecks.
Find growth opportunities.
Figure out your strengths.
Give up some control!