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« Solution for missing babylon on MAC: Babylon | Main | The 2 Israeli internet realities »

31 March 2008


Miriam Schwab

Hi Ouriel! Your points about marketing are very good. Companies need to see marketing as an integral part of their business activities. I still work with many companies who view marketing as on par with secreterial services, and they treat their marketing department as such.

In terms of the success of outsourcing marketing services: it depends on the company's approach to marketing, as you said. Companies that take marketing seriously and still manage the strategy, but need to outsource certain parts of it due to manpower limitations, seem to do well in this department. Those that view marketing as unimportant cannot successfully outsource this part of their business because they just don't take it seriously enough to work closely with an outsider.

In short - in my opinion outsourcing marketing can work, and work well, if the company in question understands the importance of marketing.

Ouriel Ohayon

Miriam i agree with you. The first is realizing how crucial this part is. But the second is realizing how important you need to internally control and understand what marketing is all about. Outsourcing is a consequence not a reason for success

Omer Perchik

Hi Ouriel,
Great post!
I believe that the Israeli online gambling industry had thought the Israeli web entrepreneur the great value of marketing.
The highly skilled marketing experts of and empire online are more than marketing evangelists, they are marketing GURUs!

Uriah Av-Ron

Hi Ouriel,

As the guy who made the comments about finance and legal last Thursday, my point referred to monies spent on hiring lawyers and accountants VS. monies spent on hiring marketing people, as well as the revolving door of hiring and firing marketing people (at Israeli start-ups).

I do agree with you 100% that marketing should start and be internal.

As a marketing consultant, one added-value of an external consultant is objectivity. When start-ups spend hours breathing, eating and sleeping their business, they sometimes miss some the market's perspective which an external person can help add. Of course, marketing (not sales) people must be speaking with customers and prospects daily, which all too often does not happen.

Mr Boin

Good point, but is 'Marketing' the right term for all that? I keep having cultural gap problem when talking marketing the way you do with other person and I ended up adopting alternative name (social-marketing, community building, experience design, and so on).

Or-Tal Kiriati

While I do agree that marketing should be a part of any company, there are various stages for various capacities of marketing. You do not need a full time marketing all the time when establishing the company. And saying the CEO should be both CTO and the Marketing Manager - is dangerous.

Here is the problem: Most entrepreneurs are tech oriented. They are not marketing people. The best thing for them to do will be to create a partnership with a marketing oriented person that will become a co-founder.
But some are reluctant to do it. Certainly at the earliest stages. Also, not so many marketing people will leave a good job for an early-stage startup.
However, there is the middle road. One that can allow entrepreneurs to develop marketing thinking for themselves and for the company they are establishing, even if they are not originally marketing people: That is to hire a consultant. A helping hand, to ask the right questions and to assume the job of the marketing thinking.
One of the diseases of the startup market is tech-people who believe they "know it all", technology, marketing, industry... The failure to recognize where they need assistance creates the average arrogant entrepreneur that can fool the environment only up to a certain point.

Ouriel Ohayon

one of the vertues of a good entrepreneur is realizing its limits. A good team will be a team where key skills are represented. If the team if only or too tech oriented, no matter how good the external assistance can be, the project is likely to fail.

Ran Rubinstein

My impression is that VCs/Angels expect you to have the market all figured out in your business plan. How can I allocate money for marketing (not ads/publicity/sales) in a seed-stage startup when everything is supposed to be figured out before I get the money?

Marketing is an activity for bodies with resources, who need to decide what to do with those resources. Enterpreneurs are to VC's what Marketing officers are to growing companies - we do the marketing work - the VC funds the execution (which usually includes PR, sales efforts, etc).


Ouriel Ohayon

i can't speak for other VCs. but what i can tell you for a fact is that i do not expect the market to be all figuret out. for a simple reason. this is not possible. what i expect is to feel that the team will be ON THE GO able to figure it out and have the industry understanding and experience that will enable them to do that. It is clear that things change very fast on the web. It is liley that new competitors will come out. some will die. New services will challenge pricing....therefore figuring ot the market from day 1 does not make sense to me and is a wrong expectation.

Eyal Beit-On

Good to see this discussion Ouriel and a great post.

As a consultant I agree with letting the client develop the marketing strategy from within and based on the business model they created. I also think once the client reaches "marketing maturity" they can decide the extent of outsourcing that suits their needs/budget.


" Marketing is not about sales (which is always mistaken in israel where there is only one word for both). "

Are you sure about that ?

there's "mehirot" - sales
and "Shivuk" - marketing

Ouriel Ohayon

Well Jenia, this is the problem, there is another word for Sales but people do not use it and believe marketing is sales. Maybe this has been influenced by the retail industry or the fact that in hight tech b2b both are very close....

outsource It provider

Hello Ouriel your article is so helpful, i never imagined that a PR firm is possible, and its amazing that behind the success of bbc and wired is this firm. I agree that a thorough understanding about marketing will really boost up an outsource provider's ability to give quality service to the customers they have.


Men, U cool!!!


U cool, man!!!

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