Good vs. Great Marketers

There is no bigger difference than the difference between being good and being great. It’s easy to go from being mediocre to being good, but going from good to great? That’s a huge jump.

It’s easy enough to be good at your job. A strong work ethic and dedication will get you pretty far in life; but to be great is something special.

I’ve been fortunate to meet many people who are great at their jobs. Luckier still, I get the chance to work with people every single day who are truly great digital marketers. I’ve often tried to put my finger on just what it is that makes these people great, and of course, it’s impossible. If greatness could be boiled down to a few characteristics and copied, everyone would be great, and we all know that is not the case. However, while there is always an undeniable “X Factor” that can’t be duplicated, great digital marketers do have many of the same traits in common.


Good digital marketers know who the target audience is. Great digital marketers understand what they love, what they hate, what makes them scared and what motivates them.


Good digital marketers enjoy their jobs. Great digital marketers eat, sleep and breathe them. They wake up thinking about how to make campaigns better, and they go to sleep thinking about what else they can learn tomorrow.

A Creative + Analytical Mindset

Good digital marketers are creative. Great digital marketers understand that creativity is only the first step in a successful campaign. Every successful campaign is a combination of great inspiration backed by real data and insights.


Good digital marketers try out new tactics. Great digital marketers create the new tactics. It’s hard to be fearless. Being comfortable is easy, but you will never become great by being comfortable. Great digital marketers disrupt.


Good digital marketers are liked by their team. Great digital marketers are trusted and respected. If you are going to be fearless with your plans, you better have a team who believes in you. Great digital marketers have the unique ability to excite, motivate and rally a team. Even the greatest digital marketers are made better with a team.


Good digital marketers create amazing campaign plans. Great digital marketers know that nothing ever goes according to plan. They are able to roll with the punches and make smart decisions on the fly without affecting campaign performance.


Good digital marketers can create an amazing strategy but often pass it off to a team to execute the details. Great digital marketers know they aren’t above anything. No matter if they’re a Specialist or a Director, great digital marketers know that it takes a village to launch a successful campaign. If someone on their team is overwhelmed, they step in to help. They back up their promises, and they get it done.


Good marketers can tell a story. Great marketers know why the story matters. They ask why. They understand the problems they are trying to solve and have the vision to create a plan to solve them.

When it comes down to it, being great isn’t easy. However, people aren’t born great; they become great with a lot of work. If you feel like you are good at what you do but not great, think about where you could improve. Be confident, work hard, think before you act, and always worry more about the why rather than the what.

Written by Kimm Lincoln on May 22, 2013


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Kimm Lincoln