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Topic: Marketing and BRICK Framework

Discussion Points
• What is the BRICK Framework?
• How does it work?
• A dive into each stage:
o Values
o Problems
o Solutions
o Learn
o Plan
o Develop
o Connect
o Action

Enjoy the Episode – Happy Marketing!

Website Thingy: www.marketingstudylab.co.uk 
The Professional Bit: https://www.linkedin.com/in/petersumpton/ 
Facebook Community: https://www.facebook.com/groups/marketingstudylab/ 
Tweet Tweet: https://twitter.com/cousinp81 

Transcript (this transcript isn’t 100% accurate but provides a decent representation of the conversation – soz for any confusion)

Peter Sumpton
Okay, that was a brief intro. Hello, and welcome. I’m on my own today. It’s a bit of a shame. But the show must go on and all that jazz. Welcome. If you’re just joining me, my name is Peter Sumpton, Lego master of marketing. And what I like to do on a Friday afternoon, because it’s the afternoon here in the UK, is dive into some marketing and and what do we mean by that? Well, what we mean is that we take marketing as a profession that we should all know and love. And we combine that with a particular other element.

So that could be in the past, we’ve done finance, we’ve done education, we’ve done Media Relations, we’ve done history, and those types of things, today is going to be slightly different. It’s a slightly different marketing, and because like I say, I’m on my own. And what we’re going to do today is we’re going to look at something called the brick model. It’s a model that I’ve created that helps me get across what I am trying to do, when I speak to clients, it helps me create a formula for them, a marketing plan for them, that is clear and obvious. And also, it makes sure that I don’t really miss anything out in that step process. So what I want to do today is take you through that formula. And lo and behold,

we use this,

we use Lego to do it, which is quite cool, really big fan of Lego as you might know. And it’s in the you can see it here. This is your brick formula. So we’ve got a fair few points to get through. That includes values, problems, solutions, learn, plan, develop, connect, and obviously action, always about the action. But first, I just want to break down this model. So I can explain it to you a little bit better as we go through today. If you do have any comments, if you do have any questions, please put them in the


or post them or wherever you’re watching this because we’re live on Facebook, YouTube, and LinkedIn. Well, modern one does a See ya. So what we’re doing today, it’s marketing and brick theory, which we really cool. Again, just as people start to join us, I just want to highlight the fact that this is, again, my methodology that I take to clients, to highlight how I can help them from a marketing point of view, and marketing consultancy point of view, and help them achieve their goals through marketing. So I’m a strong believer in my passion in life. And my main goal in life is to help as many companies and as many people understand what marketing can do for their business. So if you do have any questions about marketing, planning, my brick model as we go through it, or anything else, for that matter, just dive in the comments, and I’ll happily talk you through what my answers to your questions were I can, right. Okay, so let’s dive into this brick model, shall we? Right, okay, so the first part is values. So what do we mean by value, so this is the bottom, this is the base, these are your values, it’s the it’s the part of the brick model that will hold it all together. And that essentially, is what we mean by values, they are your non negotiables. They are the ones that Sorry, excuse me, I’m just going to post a link in to where we are live, so that people can join us one second. Let me just do this admin on air. I know completely breaking that wall. But hey, who cares? It’s my life, we can do what we want to okay. And let’s do that. So, let me

post a link.

Man, we’ll get back to it.

Brilliant. Let’s get back to it. Right okay. As I was saying, This is the brick model. And what we start with within the brick model in marketing planning, when I go and see clients is their values.

What do we mean by values?

What do we mean their non negotiables?

What are the non negotiables What are the elements of their company? What are their values, their beliefs, their culture, that they are not willing to negate in any way, shape or form, every company should have values, every company should have ethics and beliefs that they hold near and dear to who they are. And the idea behind this is that if we know these values, we know the non negotiables, we can then build on them, because they’re non negotiable. We can’t do anything until we know and understand those. And that could be anything from creating a better future from providing 100%, customer service excellence, loads of different things that could be on non negotiables. So they are your values. And we discuss them, we talk about them, so that as a marketer, helping companies, what we can do, then is build on what they believe in, straightaway, there’s massive benefits to doing that, because you get them on board straightaway, you understand what their beliefs are. And they realise, or hopefully, they come to the realisation that you are on their side, and you are not going to try and change their values or beliefs in any way, shape, or form. So that’s the first part of the brick model the values.

Once you understand their values,

we can move on to number two. And that’s the problems that customers have, what problems do their customers have? And this massively depends on a whole host of different things, the industry, they work in the size of the company. But first and foremost, let’s ignore all that, and focus on the customer. So

they must have a particular

industry they work in and multiple customers in that industry. So what problems does that industry have? What are the main issues within that market? We need to know and understand them first, before we can build on anything, because if we’re


solving problems, then we’re really not doing our job as marketers, or indeed as a business. So that’s the next part. We’ve got our values, our non negotiables, and then our problems, what problems need fixing

within our market? So that’s what we need to find out. Fantastic, right? We’re getting there. We’ll get some marketing soon. Once we’ve got problems, what do we do them? Well, we look for solutions, don’t we? We’ve got our problems, what solutions? Do you as a person, as a company, offer and provide other people, we need to know and understand those, we need to make sure that as an individual as a company, we are providing solutions that people actually want

to their problems.

Now, it’s not for us as marketers to run this down their throat and say we have a best solution. All we can do is provide all the evidence and the information about what’s the problem. And to our solution, it’s up to the end user, it’s up to the consumer, it’s up to the business to decide if you aren’t the right solution to that problem. The reason being is that there’s so much information out there, there’s so much guidance out there that it’s it’s almost impossible to control the narrative today, because everyone has got data at their fingertips whenever they want.

So we’re not there


guide people to our solution. If you’re like, what would their to do is go, hey, you’ve got this problem. These are our solutions. And this is why we feel we are the best fit for solving your problem. And if we do that, then we’re not saying what we’re not ramming it down their throat. We’re not pushing all the information onto them. The information is there. It’s readily available available to help people and if we’re helping people solve their problems, then will naturally get that pull. It’s being helpful. It’s it’s showing everything we have and saying look, we are here to solve your problems. These are our solutions are the fit for you, yes or no. If they are, please come and talk to us. We can help you. But if we try to create falsehoods if we try to create a narrative that is coming completely and utterly misjudged, consumers will see right through that.

So we need to make sure

that we are open and transparent about the solutions we provide to people’s problems. Okay, So to summarise the basis, we’ve got values, which are non negotiables, got the problems which we solve, and the solutions to those problems. So what do we do next, we learn. That’s the next stage, learn, learn, learn, learn, learn research, research research. And there’s various ways we can do this, we can do this learning. And what I like to do is kind of steal basically, from certain models and theories that are out there to really help understand three fundamentals. So when it comes to learning about an organisation, when it comes to understanding the areas, and and what that company is all about. There’s three fundamental areas, you’ve got the internal, you’ve got the external, and then you’ve got their customer, or that potential customer. And those three areas are the ones that we’re going to focus on right now. So what do we mean by learn? What is within the internal, the external, and the customer? So let’s focus on the external first, because there are external factors that we have no control over, but may have a massive impact on our business. So how can we look to analyse and view and judge those elements that might impact what we are doing as a business or as an individual. And there’s two areas that I would focus on in this external audit. And that is your competitor analysis. And what we mean by competitor analysis, is, there’s no particular right or wrong, it’s choosing areas that you want to be strong in, that you want to compete in, and looking at how your competitors compete in those areas. For example, do they have a social presence? If your ecommerce, what is the user experience like on your competitor’s website, as opposed to your own? If you’re b2b? What are the main caveats that they put in place to do business with them? Is it easy, or the non negotiables? What is their culture, like? Those types of things will make a huge difference within your market for your competitors. And as you’re analysing your competitors, you can make that comparison against you as a company. If you’re making that comparison, that’s not to say there’s any right or wrong in anything they do. It could be that one of your competitors serves a completely different person to you. And that’s absolutely fine. There’s no harm in that. But in understanding how your competitors serve, what their strengths are, what their weaknesses are, that exposes opportunities and threats to you as a business, it shows where your weaknesses lie against your competitors, shows where you’re strong. And it shows where you’re weak as well. If we know where we’re weak, we can do things to combat against that. If we know where we’re strong, we can do things to leverage that position. So that’s the first thing we do we look


Excellent external. Remember, these are areas that have a massive impact on what we do as a business. But we have very, very little, if any control over. So the second thing and external that I would look at is something we call pest delay. So the pest lane model, it started off as passed a few E’s, an owl, those types of things as we do as marketers, and you end up with pester like. And what pessoais allows you to do is look at the market as a whole look at the market and the wider the wide areas within the world to have an impact on user business in your market. So just briefly, if we go over what paslay stands for political, economic, social, technological, environmental, legal,

and ethical.

And if you do good analysis within all those areas, it will fundamentally highlight where potential opportunities are, where potential threats are gonna come from, and all those types of things. So what we do externally Remember, we’re still in the learning phase external. We look at past the leg, we look at competitor analysis. Now we can turn our attention to the internal so what do we look at internally, was a few models we can look up we can look at the seven p the seven Sorry McKinsey’s, seven S’s,

and we can look at the five M’s,

we can look at a whole host of other elements, the six eyes of digital loads of different models there. But what I feel is I’ve narrowed it down to six or seven areas that are fundamental that we need to understand as marketers, from an internal perspective that will real really help us going forward. First of all, that is what strategies are currently in place,

or strategies are

currently in place that your organisation has.

Secondly, what are the skills you’ve got? So you’ve got strategic directions? And there’s there’s things that we can say about those? Are they the right direction? Are they a good fit? And are they still fit for purpose. But then as we move on to skills have we got the skills internally to match the strategies to actually achieve the strategies. So when we’re talking about skills, they can be hugely subjective. But we’re talking about the skills internally, because what we need to look at there is Have we got the skills going forward that we require to solve people’s problems. And as you can see, we start to build on these, this groundwork here. And then we look at things like structure, processes, materials that we’ve got in place, interactivity. So interactivity, what what online, if we were to draw everything we have digitally online? What does that look like? What are we playing with? Is it good, bad, indifferent? Are we doing things that aren’t getting the engagement that we need to or should do? How do we change those loads of different things we can consider when we think of interactivity. And the final thing we need to look at internally, is objectives, what current objectives are set by the business? Now, these could be wide business objectives. These could be marketing objectives, or there could be comms objectives really, really, really down and really, really specific. So to summarise what we do, we look at the external pestel, a competitor analysis, we look at the internal, which includes strategies, skills, structures, processes, materials, interactivity, and objectives. Which brings us to the final learning element, the final learning element in this brief model, what’s that final learning element? customers, customer profiling, avatars, personas, ideal clients, whatever it might be, whatever you call them, what we want to do, along with our internal and our external analysis, is look at our customers. Who’s that person you want walking through your door? What does he or she look like? What are they look like? Is it a family unit, you want to get really detailed, and there’s a few ways we can do this, we can do it from an ideal client perspective, who we want walking through the door to say, I want you to solve my problems, please. Or we can do it from a theory and database approach. So we don’t necessarily look at who our ideal client is more who our current client base consists of.

Who offers the most customer lifetime


Who are our

advocates, and do it from a data driven approach. Personally, I like to mix the two. So I don’t think you can go through customer profiling without being a bit out there without being a bit. We want clients that are this or that we want people in this age bracket. We want people are passionate about such a topic. I don’t think you can actually do that

on data.

So I go for a mixture, I go for a bit of ideal client coming through the door, what do I want to see? Who are they? Where do they live? What car do they drive? Do they like holidays in the sun, or in cities, that type of thing. Also, then go through the data. Look at your Google Analytics, look at Facebook’s insight platform. Look at areas internally like a CRM system and gain as much information or data as you possibly can about your customers. Build that persona build that perception of who your customers are. And once we’ve got the internal the external and the customer profiling, we’ve learned enough to take us on to the next stage which is plan. I say learned enough because in my research, and what I’ve learned listening from people, such as Seth Godin and Mike Ritson is that after a certain while you can only plan and research so much so you can only research so much for it to be impactful. We can have reams and reams and pages and pages of data and information.


are we going to understand be able to analyse and data Every single part of that, yes or no, it depends on your team and the size of the company. But at some point, we’re going to get information overload and data paralysis. And we do not want that. What we want is enough information to make valid judgments from, so then we can move on to plan. That’s what we’re gonna do right now. So moving on to the planning stage here.

So what do we mean when we talk about


So for me, plan is looking to the future we’re planning ahead. And how do that? Well, there’s a couple of models that I’m really, really passionate about, and I really care about, and care about a bit strong, but I’m sure let’s rephrase that, that I’m really, really passionate about. And that is the SWOT and the toes. So how do we combine the learning phase with a plan or the planning phase. So what we do here is we take all our Learn learnings and our knowledge, and we move it into this planning phase. And by learning by moving into the planning phase, what we do we take this SWOT strengths or weaknesses, internally, opportunities and our threats externally, from what we learned in our planning phase. And we create the most critical, the most crucial, the most important elements in our SWOT strengths and weaknesses internally, opportunities and threats externally. So we take that from our internal and our external audit, and also our customer profiling. So we’ve got us what we’ve created a good SWOT analysis on say, five or six different elements, it could be more, it could be less for each s, w, o and T, doesn’t really matter. It’s the most critical elements, the ones you feel are most crucial from the analysis you’ve done. And this is the planning stage. So we’ve taken that, and we’ve put it in our SWOT. And this is the key bit and this is the part I’m wholly in wholeheartedly behind from any marketing planning. at all, it’s the toes element to w.


It’s the toes element. So what do we mean by toes? Okay, right. It’s not is what backwards, but it’s not swap backwards, you don’t just do a swap backwards. So what toes does, and I’ve got other learnings that explain this a lot better. So if you want those hit me up in the comments. But what toes does, it combines all those elements of the SWOT together and pits them off against each other, to create future directions, future strategic direction, so let’s just talk that through.

So we’ve got strengths, and we’ve got weaknesses internally,

we’ve got opportunities, and we’ve got threats externally. We take those strengths, and look at the opportunities and the threats. And we go, Hmm, we’ve got a really, really strong strength here. And there’s a huge opportunity in our marketplace, if we can use that strength, to focus on that opportunity, we have the best possible chance of that strategy, working. And that’s the same with the threats, you look at your strengths, and you look at your threats and you go, that is a huge threat to us as a business. But we’ve got this as a strength. So we can use that strength to combat against that threat.

And you do that for the weaknesses as well. So you look at your weaknesses and go, there’s a huge opportunity in the marketplace. If we can reduce that weakness, that opportunity becomes a golden nugget. And then the final one, the one that people really, really struggle with is the double negative threat and the weakness, how can you take a weakness under threat and turn it into a strategic direction? Well, what we do there is we look at the threat and the weakness and go, Okay, so if we reduce this threat, does that combat against sorry, if we reduce this weakness, does that combat against this threat? And if it does, how does it? How can we reduce the weakness to combat against that threat, and that is your strategic direction. So there’s four areas to cover there. And what I’ll probably do is create another live where I go through the SWOT and toes in a bit more detail. And that’s the planning stage one part of the planning stage. The next part is to do an S fa, on those strategies we’ve created in our toes. So what’s the SFA? So that is suitability feasibility and acceptability. So what we do if we look at those strategic options we’ve created in our toes. And we look at each one and mark it out of 510 15 doesn’t really matter, you pick the score, but we mark it suitability, its feasibility, and its acceptability. And top score wins, basically, you look at each strategy is a level playing field, out of 15, out of 30, out of whatever number you like, and you go, that is the strategy for me, that is the one that we need to focus on. It could be two strategies, it could be three, but then you start to get into the realms of how easy that is to do unless you can integrate them all and all that kind of stuff. Stick with two, possibly three, depending on the size of your business, depending on how link there, but usually choose a good market. Okay, right, we have finally got strategic direction in terms of the planning stage. Now, what do we need to do with our brick model? We look to develop, we look to develop. So what do we mean by develop? We do this twofold. We do it long term, and we do it short term. So let’s cover the long term first. So now we’ve got some strategic direction in our plan. We look to develop our tactics, tactics sound really short term. But if you’ve got some kind of strategic direction, we can make sure we’ve got short term and long term. So what do we mean by long term, we’re looking for longevity and scalability. And what we mean by that is thinking about the bigger picture, you’ve got a strategic direction, that’s going to last a year, three, five years, how do we make that really last? How do we scale that up. And this is what we usually consider the long term in our brand building, becoming more aware in a particular market, building that brand presence from the top our brand is our brand. And what we stand for as a brand, is what we stand for as a brand, I should never necessarily change. So we’re thinking bigger picture, we think in brand building, for longevity and for scalability. But let’s claw it back. We’ve got that bigger picture over there. But we want to develop short term tactics as well. How do we do that? There’s a number of things we can actually do there. The first one being built on objectives. First and foremost, we need to set objectives. It’s as simple as that. If we haven’t got an exit objectives, how do we know we’re achieving what we’re trying to achieve?

So we set objectives, fantastic, brilliant.

We need to focus on two fundamental things that in developing our tactics, the seven P’s and the customer journey. So what we mean by seven P’s, the seven P’s is the marketing mix. So what we mean by the marketing mix, seven P’s communication mix, it’s just one of those P’s. So we look to develop the marketing mix, product, pray place, price, promotion of which is your communication mix, people process, physical evidence of which some we’ve covered previously, but they might develop and evolve. And this is why it’s called the development phase, the development phase in green. We’ve looked at the seven P’s, we’ve got our objectives, and now we’re looking at a customer journey.


from the first touch point

to continual engagement, after purchase, by purchase or transaction, it doesn’t mean it has to be monetary, it can be anything. So what we need to do from a customer journey point of view is map out all the touch points, map out, where people are going, where which stages people are going to and from. Understand what happens at each touch point and what somebody is looking for at each touch point. And how do you get them on to the next stage? That is crucial and critical. If we’re not doing that, per touchpoint, we can’t really know or really understand where our friction points are within our customer journey. If we can understand the friction points, we can reduce those friction points and make it a better customer journey, a better experience for our customers make it easier for them to reach that end goal of solving their problem. And we’re the company to help them solve that problem.

Okay, so we’re getting there. Now we’ve done all that.

We can fit one more part on there. And that is the Connect part. So what do we actually mean by Connect? Well, we want to connect to our audience. We want to connect think of that customer journey. So we understand and we know the touchpoints that our customers are going to be involved in but we’ve got nothing To show those touch points, this connection phase is all about content creation and creativity. And I just want to move that back off, but that the connection point, the creativity, that is fundamental and huge. Everybody likes to talk about the content creation. Everybody wants a social media marketer. Everybody wants somebody that’s a Twitter guru nowadays, or Tick Tock or whatever it might be the latest trend. But if we haven’t done all this, then we can’t necessarily get to that part. So that’s the the next part of it, connect, connecting to your audience at each stage of that customer journey. And that’s what we need to do connect at each stage of the customer journey, what are people looking for each touchpoint of the customer journey. And that’s what we do at that point. It’s a creative stage of the the process is an exciting stage of the process. But we don’t get there without any of that. That’s just one part of it a huge fundamental part, but the rest are huge and fundamental.

So that’s one other part.

Okay, we’re down to the final stage, we’ve done development, we’ve done Connect.

What onto the final part,

let me put this on here.

Which is action, action, action action is action. And that covers the whole brick model, it seeps down and pushes upwards. Because if we haven’t got action, if we’re not creating the who, the what the when, and I suppose some rationale into into why, then it’s all for nothing, it’s all for absolutely nothing. So what we need to do is we need to create action. And that’s usually in the form of a Gantt chart, and usually in the form of creating KPIs. So we understand each action each touchpoint each element we’re going to do in this marketing plan, we understand whether it’s working or not. And if we can do that, and we can work out whether it’s working or not, then we have ourselves quite a robust model, we have ourselves some theory that we can strongly base our ideas and are researched through to create a well rounded marketing plan, and content, and creativity. That makes sense is understandable, and is easy to follow.

So that’s my brick model. Really.

If you’ve got any questions in watching this live or watching it back, please use the comments, get in touch with me, I’ll happily talk about this brick model, continuously, however long you want me to. And that’s about it. It’s a bit of a shorter episode, but I just wanted to talk you through that brick model, see if it was it was any good if it was any use and if it made sense, or if it needed tweaking in any way, shape, or form. Because I want this to be your model. I want this to be a model that’s useful to you. I want it to be a model that useful to businesses, not me. I utilise it to help businesses. But if it’s not fundamentally helpful for businesses, then there’s no point in using it. The really isn’t. So please get back to me with any information, anything that didn’t make sense or anything you want me to dive into, that’s absolutely fine. No worries that at all. Also, from a wider perspective, if you’ve got any questions about marketing, or planning in general, or strategic direction or tactical elements, let me know. Happy to answer them at any point in the future. So this is me, Peter Sumpton. Signing off. My first live by myself a thinker is the second who knows who cares, really, as long as I’m adding some value to your lives. I’m happy. Okay, so have a good weekend

and happy marketing

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