The Sin of Inclusion

The IT Services Marketing Association (ITSMA) recently did an interview with Malcolm Frank the Senior Vice President, Chief Strategy Officer and Chief Marketing Officer for Cognizant. In the interview Malcolm talked about 5 messaging traps that IT Marketers tend to fall into.

While I agree with all 5 traps that he identified – I felt this one trap – the Sin of Inclusion – is really at the root of it all. Check out what Malcolm has to say about it and the synergistic mulitpolar world that we live in! (sorry I couldn’t help myself)

We marketers are not talking to our clients in a candid, direct, and understandable way. Instead, in far too many cases the marketing in our industry can become so, well, grandiloquent that our communications confuse rather than clarify and alienate rather than disarm prospective clients. We’ve all seen it: Websites and brochures promising “synergies” via “new paradigms” by “leveraging” “capabilities” to “drive essential advantage” with “next-generation solutions” for our “multipolar world.” You get the point …

The sin of inclusion

We try to satisfy everyone in all our different markets, verticals, and geographies. But by doing so, we satisfy no one. Our marketing becomes diluted and so inclusive that it no longer means anything. These issues combine to create the Thesaurus Effect, where marketers reach for big words to hide the fact that they don’t have anything specific to say in the first place. We can’t be specific because if we are, it could be contradictory across some of our various markets. And so our message is further diluted out of fear that we not offend anyone or leave anyone out.

To read the full ITSMA article with Malcolm’s thoughts click here

1 comment to The Sin of Inclusion

  • Tracey

    Thank goodness somebody is pointing this out. I just returned from CES, where some of the booths had messages like “Inspiring innovation”. (Huh?) Unless a company is really well-known, and everyone already knows what they do, you can’t get away with that type of message. I won’t take the time to find out more about a company unless I already know that it’s a product/industry that’s relevant to me.

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