Effective Marketing Without Overthinking, Episode #84

Effective Marketing Without Overthinking Mary Kate Gulick

Marketing is part of life for every creator, service provider, or business professional. Granted, not every one of us is assigned to the marketing role in our organization, but we all employ aspects of marketing every day in relationships, social media interactions, and more. It’s for that reason each of us needs to understand the basics of marketing and the things we can do to improve our efforts. And if you’re a business owner, you especially need to make wise and effective marketing decisions. To help us think through these issues, our guest on this episode is Mark Kate Gulick.

Mark Kate is the Chief Marketing Officer for the Carson Group. She is an award-winning marketing veteran and Amazon best-selling author. Her education and experience equipped her to fill important roles with IBM, TD Ameritrade, and serving with a number of powerfully important organizations including Big Brothers and Big Sisters. On this episode we discuss ways that every marketer or business owner can improve outreach efforts, ensure their marketing strategy is clear and effective, and to hit those targets no matter the industry or niche.

You will want to hear this episode if you are interested in…

  • What Mary Kate does in her role as Chief Marketing Officer [5:01]
  • Making up commercials as a child revealed an innate marketing interest [6:54]
  • Why marketing is important and how it translates into any business [10:01]
  • The two biggest changes in marketing over the last 20 years [13:42]
  • 3 common marketing mistakes businesses make [18:08]
  • Things EVERY business should be doing to market effectively [24:34]
  • The indicators that your company may need its own CMO [29:57]
  • Why Mary Kate decided to write a book for those starting or running businesses [33:17]
  • What Mary Kate did today that put her in the right mindset for success [36:57]

Marketing is important for you, no matter what your business is

In Mary Kate’s words, “Marketing is a growth driver and it doesn’t matter what your business is… if you are interested in getting new customers, keeping current ones, growing the relationships that you have with current customers, that means marketing is important to you, just inherently.” That statement makes a whole lot of sense to me because all of the things she mentioned are important in any industry. So what do we need to understand to help us gain clarity on our marketing efforts and execute effectively?

Mary Kate says we need to keep things simple. Frequently we hear that marketing is a terribly complex thing but the truth is that most businesses only need to focus on one primary marketing strategy that reliably brings in dollars.There are hundred of options and it may take you a while to find what fits you and your business, but once you do and master it, you can put it on auto-pilot and move on to other strategies at that point. But you don’t have to add more. Listen to hear Mary Kate’s refreshing perspective of finding, building, and benefitting from a single marketing strategy.

Don’t make the #1 marketing mistake: Choosing the wrong people to help you

Often, businesses think of marketing as an expense rather than what it really is — a driver of revenue. As a result they look at marketing from a perspective of convenience and cost savings when they should be looking at it as a strategic spend designed to drive revenue. This can result in two types of mistakes: trying to save money through having unqualified people handle your “marketing” OR by hiring the “best full service marketing firm.” In both cases, the decision is driven by fear. On the one-hand, it’s the fear of spending too much. On the other, it’s the fear that if you don’t get the absolute best help in the world, you won’t get the ROI you need.

Clarity comes when you’re able to identify the precise things you’re trying to accomplish. This target outcome enables you to in turn, identify the exact person(s) who can help you get that result. Seldom is that an intern or other low-cost individual, and seldom is it the high-powered marketing agency. It may require work to find the best fit, but you’ll be a lot better off in the long run.

3 questions that will clarify your marketing strategy

Every business these days needs to have a clear messaging strategy. Simply put, you need to be able to answer, with certainty, the following three questions…

  • Who are your people?
  • What can you do for them that nobody else can do?
  • How do you want them to feel after an interaction with you?

If you have clear answers to those questions then any tactic you pursue can be made to align with your answers to those questions. It doesn’t matter if you want to use billboards, or Facebook Ads, or a podcast to reach the people you’ve identified. Whatever you choose, you can implement it in a way that targets your answers to those three questions. When you do this, you are empowered to build a clear and singular message that associates your brand with the feeling you’ve identified. And for your people, that feeling will resonate. That means that everything you do from there on will have more power.

Join us for this practical, enlightening conversation.

Resources & People Mentioned

Connect with Mary Kate Gulick


Mary Kate Gulick is an award-winning marketing veteran, creative leader, content marketing pioneer and Amazon bestselling author. She has an MA in advertising, marketing and communication studies, and is a Professional Certified Content Marketer. After years providing game-changing creative ideas, leadership, and marketing strategy for award-winning ad agencies, Mary Kate joined IBM to lead their employment brand offering. From there, long-time client TD Ameritrade tapped her to head up brand, creative and digital marketing for the Institutional business, where she developed a keen understanding of the needs of RIAs and independent advisors while building the company’s award-winning content marketing program and category leading digital presence.

She currently sits on the board of the #1 nationally ranked chapter of the American Marketing Association, is the chair of the Hunger & Food Access Committee of the Junior League of Omaha, and big sister with Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Mary Kate is the mother of two active boys, wife to an amazing husband, and dog-mom to a mini-goldendoodle. She loves reading, cooking, live music and is a huge Harry Potter and Star Wars fan. She’s obsessed with Broadway, sings show tunes while she works, and her oldest son is currently teaching her to play tennis.

Guests on the Mitlin Money Mindset Show are not affiliated with CWM, LLC, and opinions expressed herein may not be representative of CWM, LLC. CWM, LLC is not responsible for the guest’s content linked on this site.

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