To “hear” the Carolina Marketer speak most listeners would quickly understand why for all his years living down South he’s heard:  “You’re not from around here are you, son?”

Truth be told, Billy Joel sang about my origins with the lyrics:  “From a town known as Oyster Bay Long Island – Rode a boy with a Six Pack in his hands….”  Separately Joel also sang about “A New York State of Mind.”

Well what are our Carolina “States” of mind?  How do they affect our marketing outreach?  How does environmental conditioning found in residents along the Grand Strand differ from the mountains of Western, NC?  Do we, as professional communicators construct our messages differently when targeting Charleston vs. Charlotte or Aiken vs. Asheville?

More to our (professional) point, when “we” Carolina Marketers reach out to the rest of the world how does our sense of place effect the message or how it’s delivered?  In working with numerous companies large and small throughout North and South Carolina for 15 years, there is frequently a “self consciousness” when positioning themselves to the world-at-large.

“We can’t be seen as though we’re from Mayberry….” was a directive from a CMO at $50 Million chemical company.  “Not being from a ‘Major’ City is one strike against us” was the similar fear of a 19 year old manufacturing company – located in the State capitol!  A relatively new software client requested we “create a high-end image because we’re not expected to be smart since we live in the sticks…”

The fact is no matter who we’re reaching out to with our marketing messages and no matter what those messages are – they are received and perceived through the prism of everyone’s individual “state of mind.”  And what effects “state of mind?”

The broadest, simplest answer is current circumstances and past experiences.  Yeah, its that simple.  But do we consider these twin devils when preparing communication campaigns?  When we look at what impacts how people will RESPOND to our messaging, now we have to add another uncontrollable item:  evolving considerations in the future  (Hey salespeople, just because they loved your pitch last year – the world has changed!).

It doesn’t matter what “state of mind” anyone is in, the pity is we can’t control most factors!  But, marketers can control:

The Message

How it is Delivered

The Call-to-Action

Next time you visit, our “clubhouse” for Marketing Professionals here in the Carolinas, lets all drink way too much sweet tea and make up some lyrics to “I’m in a Carolina State of Mind.”