Homework – and Relationship – Season!

September 2, 2009 at 3:10 pm Leave a comment

In yesterday’s “Homework Season” post, I mentioned the Expectations and Requirements document sent home by my 8th grader’s math teacher. This five-point, signatures-required form clearly outlined the teacher-student relationship, setting up both for a very successful Homework Season — assuming you define success as “expectations met, and advancements made.” The highlight of this five-point agreement states “We (student and parent) understand that grades are EARNED by the student rather than GIVEN by the teacher.”

Thinking about this a lot today, I recognized that the relationship between today’s marketer and consumer is amazingly similar. With marketer as teacher and consumer as student, the comparison goes like this: “We (marketers) understand that a relationship is EARNED by our company rather than GIVEN solely by the consumer.”

That statement of marketing fact has been true for a long time, but many companies have ignored it – and the relationship – by creating Big Image advertising with the once-important “disruption” technique of attention-getting.

Today’s social explosion gives rise to the relationship between marketer/company and consumer. Every marketer can take the relationship counsel of the Canyon Hills Junior High School Math Department. Relationships (like school grades) are EARNED. And it’s not just a one-time thing. Relationships, of course, need to be maintained, both the student-teacher relationship and the company-consumer.

Thankfully, a wide variety of social networking tools make this fairly easy. It’s no longer about disruption. The success equation is the same for companies as for students. Maintain a good relationship to meet expectations and to advance.

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Homework Season kickoff! You’re on the team, too. For Understanding, Read What is ON the Lines

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