Not your father’s marketing
When you hear the word “marketer,” you may think of an outgoing sales wizard who loves making connections and can talk their way out of a paper bag (like yours truly). But it turns out that for a sizable chunk of the marketing world, this stereotype isn’t true. The American Marketing Association found that out of 1,000 marketers, a majority said they prefer solitary activities over group events and felt the need to “de-charge” after a social event.
Alright, so who are these marketing introverts hiding in plain sight and how are they coping in the fast-paced world of 21st-century marketing?
Introverts and extroverts, a very blurry line
Very few people fall into the sole bucket of “introvert” or “extrovert.” It’s not a one or the other deal like being on Team Edward or Team Jacob (Twilight’s still cool, right?). Not all introverts are bookworms who hide in the house all day and get scared by loud noises and every extrovert isn’t a party animal who never shuts their yapper. Most people are a healthy mix of both but tend to exhibit more of one side than the other.
The introvert work style
One difference between introverts and extroverts is how each gains and expends their energy. Introverts gain energy by spending time alone and lose it from spending long periods of time with groups of people. Vice versa for extroverts. So if you’re thinking about changing your seating plan to the hip open-office space, keep in mind how that might affect the energy of your more introverted employees. That’s not to say it’s impossible for an introvert to function in a high volume open-office space, it just means they might not be as productive as possible without having the option to slip away to a quieter workplace.
Doesn’t play well with others
It’s a common myth that introverts don’t work well in groups. This stems from the thought that introverts don’t talk a lot during meetings. While this can be true, it’s because introverts prefer to listen, observe and only speak when they have something valuable to say rather than talk aimlessly. (No offense, extroverts.) So if they seem quiet during a brainstorm, they’re probably just waiting until they have the next “Just Do It.” or “What’s in Your Wallet?” to chime in with.
Where can introverts flourish?
While big sales pitches and presentations might be better left to the more outgoing members of your team, introverts can contribute to your marketing strategy in a variety of ways. Since they tend to be better critical thinkers, introverts can see the often overlooked but crucial details that make or break a marketing campaign.
When creating messaging, it's essential to be thoughtful and empathetic to your audience, whether that’s 500,000 people seeing a billboard on their morning commute or one client that could mean everything for your business. It just so happens that thoughtfulness and empathy are two traits common with introverted people! So, that pesky headline or new business proposal you’ve been struggling with might be right up their alley.
The big idea
Realistically, the whole distinction between extrovert and introvert is pretty overblown. As illustrated with the extremely timely Twilight reference, most people can’t be boxed into neat little camps. That being said, there are some distinct differences between introverts and extroverts, how they work and what kind of tasks they’re best suited for. Keep those differences in mind so you can present your employees with opportunities and work where their unique skills will shine.
Interested in getting brand advice from a kick-ass marketing agency with both introverts AND extroverts? Get in touch.
Check out these related blog posts: