The Marketer vs. The Technician

You’re involved in a competitive online battle going on in your niche and there’s a good chance you’re not even aware you’re one of the competitors.

Imagine two entrepreneurs – one is the Marketer and one is the Technician. Assuming they’re selling a product or service of comparable quality, which one do you think will be doing better (5) years from now?*

It’s a safe bet that the Marketer will be doing significantly better than the Technician. Why? Because the Marketer is focused on, maybe even obsessed with, identifying the wants and needs of a very well-defined customer. They make sure that their products & services are continually promoted as the solution to those needs & desires.

The Technician, on the other hand, is focused on delivering a quality product or service first and marketing second. This is true even in the quality of their writing. Their attitude is one of: If I build a better mousetrap, the world will beat a path to my door.

If you want to really thrive online, you must understand the battle the Marketers are waging in your niche and work to embrace and/or counter their advantages.

True Marketers are market demand specialists in that they create a market demand for their products and services. Their weapons include an arsenal of metrics, analytics, research, surveys and skillful copywriting. Their battle tactics include plenty of campaign planning and management coupled with fast execution and follow through.

True Technicians are product specialists in that they create and polish a product or service that best suits the needs and desires. Their weapons are limited to the quality of their product or service and the inherent demand that generates. Their battle tactics include product/service improvements, technical innovation, word-of-mouth advertising and genuine expertise.

So let’s look at the difference between how a typical Marketer writes articles versus how a Technician writes articles:

Typical Marketer

  • Leaps to quickly quantify the metrics behind how success will be defined
  • Determines what specifically must happen in terms of quantity and quality of article production
  • Does keyword research to project market size and depth of possible impact
  • Plans deployment, syndication and follow-up to ensure the articles in their inventory are an appreciating asset that reflects favorably on their enterprise and brand(s)

Typical Technician

  • They will normally do some comprehensive research, and as a result create too many words per article
  • They obsess over the proper use of language, spelling, grammar and sentence structure
  • They generally produce very high quality articles; which often comes at the price of low article volume and limited marketing impact

It’s fairly obvious that to be truly successful in your online marketing efforts, you need to be a Technician who writes and thinks like a Marketer. You must produce a large quantity of high-quality articles that reflect well on your brand while at the same time dominating your niche using numeric metrics (rather than gut feelings) to advance your market position.

The TECHNICIAN’S Task: Take a fresh look at your article writing & marketing strategies through the eyes of the analytical metrics-driven Marketer. See the building of your article writing inventory as part of a campaign or a series of campaigns designed to achieve very measurable objectives in terms of lead generation and traffic attraction.

The MARKETER’S Task: Give one piece of article writing advice to non-marketer Expert Authors to help them see the world through your marketing eyes. What would you recommend?

* Does this blog post look familiar? It should. It’s a slightly modified version of a post written by Chris back in May of last year. It got a great response then and we felt that with a few tweaks it was even more apropos today. We hope you’ll agree.



Your words and ideas are well taken. But, … there are those of us, I guess we call ourselves soft sell, or soft topic, marketers who do not put money first. Now, don’t get me wrong, I enjoy money as much as the “next guy.” Yes, I want to make some money from my online work. But I am just not into competition. I believe there is enough to go around for everyone. Each person writing in my niche has things to say that are at least a little different than the way I would say it, or teach it. Someone will benefit from each of of our writings.

Comment provided August 25, 2009 at 4:03 PM


Diane Delap writes:

From my point of view, I think that we need to find a way to be both — a good marketer and a good “technician” as you put it. Writing requires us to present ourselves as able to master the English language to some degree. But in what we do write for our blogs, ezines, newsletters, ebooks, articles or whatever, we need to find ways to get to the point and at the same time provide more valuable, content rich information that meets the needs of our niche markets.

This can be an overwhelming task in many cases, but this would be to the benefit of both our niche markets and for us marketers, who are trying to figure out some way to make money online. I think we need to provide value information and at the same time, while not fussing around with getting things so “technically right” that we miss opportunities to meet the current needs of our niche markets. In the end, if we can find a way to merge the “marketer” and “technician” in each of us, to the best of our abilities, both our niche markets and us as marketers would be more satisfied with what we do accomplish in the end.

Comment provided August 25, 2009 at 5:26 PM


Josef Mack writes:

While I agree with your comments I think it is a challenge for us to find the best balance between the two approaches.

Ideally one would be a great marketer with high quality articles.

Maybe an expert in this area could write a couple of articles to help us out.

Comment provided August 25, 2009 at 5:52 PM


Lance Winslow writes:

I understand this, but a marketer who is so focused on the “money” will often stoop to unbelievable lows such as using PRL content, computer generated articles, outsourced articles from the cheapest source on said planet. They will also use these articles they gather to spam the search engines using this article directory and others in order to get more “links” to their websites to further their position in Google.

EzineArticles thus, needs to enforce certain regulations, otherwise the technicians will be “mud-slided” over and no one will see what they’ve produced.

Here is my advice to Article Marketers, maintain your ethics, and if you don’t know what that is, well, look it up in your dictionary (if you even have one).

Comment provided August 26, 2009 at 12:09 AM


Marc writes:

Dr. Schwenk, Diane, Josef and Lance,

At the risk of sounding wishy-washy, you’re ALL correct. Expert Authors need to decide for themselves what is their desired outcome for their article writing efforts. I’m familiar with a Nigerian poet who has no desire for money – he simply wants to have his poems published on the web. For others, there is an extreme passion for the technical accuracy of their articles and the income-generating potential takes a back seat by choice. Still others have no desire for quality and seek only to make money – these are the folks that Lance eludes to.

However, the vast majority of our membership falls somewhere in the middle. They are entrepreneurs who wish to market their business in a effective, relevant and meaningful manner. They truly seek that balance between technician and marketer that can be so elusive. It’s these people who will benefit the most from the balanced approached we’re endorsing here.


Geoff writes:

I probably fall somewhere in the middle. I make an effort to get my articles to my desired level, otherwise I feel that I won`t be taken seriously and viewed as unprofessional. I think that unless my articles are looked upon favourably I can`t hope to make any money. In other words, one hinges on the other.

Comment provided August 26, 2009 at 9:30 AM


Lance Winslow writes:

Marc is correct here. My thinking is this and realize, I am an anomaly here at EzineArticles. Not only due to my volume, but because when I started writing articles, I wasn’t a very good writer, and I wasn’t marketing anything really. More or less, just trying to give my information and knowledge to the world, figuring that was the right thing to do after retirement. So, in a way I am a technician of my past endeavors, and yet, I realize that in business, our company had to market our services and products.

So, in a way, I was a little of neither and a little of both. And thus, from my perpective, I see how both sides need to do better to achieve thier objectives.

First, I see technicians who are great at what they are doing, but even they admit that when it comes to marketing, they are lacking certain skills, so they ought to be working on those. Sun Tzu says to capitalize on your strengths and work on your weakness, while never denying knowing thy self.

So, technicians need to consider very carefully their titles, and key words in those titles. Then they need to not write 1,000 word articles exhausting the readers attention span, because the reader will have read all they need and have no reason to click on the link to learn more.

By all means give information, like you are now, but hold back a bit after you’ve wetted their curiousity and then bring them to your website for all they are seeking. That’s my advice to technicians.

Second, let’s discuss my advice to straight online article marketers.

If you do not care, it will show. If you write trite crap, people will notice. Oh, sure, you will attract traffic, but it certainly will not be any relevant traffic, unless you are looking for only customers under 95 IQ. In that case you can attract lots of folks, but I ask are they going to actually buy anything from you?

If you just have a website with AdSense and you really don’t care, then yes, these people will click on your ads and then leave your website I suppose leaving you a minscule trickle payment of a couple of cents. But also realize that if everyone does that, then the advertisers will stop buying those ads due to all the parasitical worthless websites, and you will eventually be left with no money and only hosting fee and domain name bills. Is that really a viable business I ask.

Next, there are online marketers who seem to enjoy hyping the crap out of everything, and they write some delicious article promising eternal salvation and an abundance of virgins and then when you get to their site they have more testimonials than God, in a 10,000 member church. Give us a break.

Then these long sales letters that go on for 10 pages, or the squeeze page that captures email addresses, well, if you call that “marketing” a business, I think you need to consider what marketing is, because those are just more sleaze for the internet.

Article Marketers need to write good articles, no they are not going to be perfect like those of the technicians, who’ve been in their fields 10-20 years, or the writers who can spin a phrase so brilliantly that you want to buy them coffee or lunch just to meet them. But – if you truly want to market online, you have to give to get. That is what informational selling is.

This venue really is not new, as you can find trade journals from the 1920s and 1930s with guest article writers, leaving their names and addresses, and contacts at the bottom of the articles. If article marketers will focus on delivering as promised they will indeed find better “targeted traffic” that will actually buy something.

Of course, if an article marketer is misrepresenting themselves, and pretending to be something they aren’t to trick people into buying, then they are going to have to find the dummied down crowd to buy into their BS lines of marketing. Still, to those people, I’d simply ask, could you please go somewhere else and not ruin what we have here for all of us?

Now, I realize this is a free country and the Internet sellers, especially the small ones are without rules and regulations, and little enforcement, so they think it’s okay to promote this way. But, whereas, I note that and understand, I also would ask that you think about what you are doing, stand for something more, and do what’s right. Because in the long run, you’ll have more business, more referrals and more of the “right kind of traffic” to support your lifestyle as an online marketer. Just deliver on the promise and you can start by writing articles that do that.

Please think on this.

Comment provided August 26, 2009 at 5:46 PM



I can’t seem to get this whole issue out of my head, because I know that for me, it’s absolutly the issue I need to resolve, but I have no idea what to actually DO about it.

I’m right there with the Nigerian poet at my core–I do my site because I love the topic and want to share it–but next to that is the awareness that if I don’t market, the people who will benefit won’t have what I could share with them.

So what IS the “arsenal of metrics, analytics, research, surveys” mentioned in the original article?

What in the world are these, where do you get them, how do you know how to use them?? Did you guys just –what, wake up with that knowledge? Did you go to school in the area? Take classes? I want to know it but I have no idea how to learn it.

I don’t not use it/the tools because I don’t value them–I don’t even know they exist!

Actually, even keywords are a murky wonder to me–how do you know which ones to choose? Heck, how do you know what words are key??

I honestly have no idea how to be more ‘marketer-ish’, beyond writing more articles without having them have to be perfect, which is good because of course they never are! That’s good–but I want to know about the numbers stuff.

I hope someone knows about the analytical stuff, and can point us cloud-head types in the right direction!

Comment provided August 31, 2009 at 6:24 AM




Before I write a book to answer your questions. :)…

Many times I find myself thinking as a marketer about a type of Internet business… any business and I wonder how I could BUY or GET leads and then SELL the sales to a willing merchant who would love to BUY an unlimited number of sales that I could provide them.

A technician might view the same world by asking him or herself how they could get in the actual business of providing the goods and services whereas the marketer asks him or herself how to stay OUT of the business by only being a facilitator between the willing buyers and the willing sellers of any given product or service.

We see this all the time in article content… The marketer looks at content as a means to acquire a lead to sell a sale to a willing buyer of those sales. The technician is in love with writing and his or her articles are works of art.

The marketer is not emotional with his/her articles; whereas the technician is.

Now… neither is right nor wrong; just two different approaches to the art and science of content marketing with articles.

Comment provided August 31, 2009 at 9:24 AM


Juna writes:

Yes, the terms “technicians” and “marketers” are far different from each other but both are interconnected.
I agree with one of the comments that there should have a balance in the two approaches mentioned.


Comment provided November 19, 2009 at 2:38 AM


vinnzTech writes:

I appreciate more on the work of the technician but the marketer get money more than technician.

As i know marketer will be describe also as moneymaker, what ever happens marketer can always have money in their hand steady unlike technician which only got little.

Anyway its better to choose where you happy at, thanks and God bless.

Comment provided July 25, 2010 at 8:34 AM


Dave Evans writes:

I consider myself to be a technician but aspire to be a marketeer. How do i make the transition ?

Comment provided February 28, 2011 at 3:54 PM


Dave, it really is a matter of writing technically good articles in a way that people a) want to read them, b) can find them easily, and c) want more. Focus on keeping things clear and concise, visually appealing, have high-quality titles and be keyword rich.


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