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Practitioner Marketing Builds Killer Apptitude

October 12, 2017 - Influencer marketing -
By: Yolanda Fintschenko

What does it take to find a killer app? Killer Apptitude—that is, knowing how to suss out the most compelling problems to solve. Does it have to be the best technology? No. Does it have to be the smartest approach? No.

So how can you cultivate killer apptitude? Use problem and market knowledge to identify the right problem for the right group of people, plus the expertise to solve all aspects of that problem—including the business model that best delivers the solution. That means getting close to your customer.

What does that have to do with content marketing to increase your share of conversation? You want to use practitioner marketing to deliver your content strategy. This puts you in a perfect position to test which topics and conversations are most important to your customers—through the topics that excite practitioners. Then, test your hypothesis, measure your SOV, and exercise your killer apptitude.

Finding a problem

There are many ways to do this. Sometimes, you have a hammer and just look for nails. People tell you it’s a bad way to do it, but it can work. I mean, if you have nails that need pounding, you will (naturally) get the hammer.

A lot of what is required is fully exploring the question “What if?” When practitioners explore “What if?” questions (especially when there are some solutions that could be in your wheelhouse), this is a great way to do a little product development research. Did their content get any comments? Did their content get a lot of traffic? Did the topic increase share of conversation?

If your practitioner’s topic resonated, even if the solution isn’t one you would advance, they have probably found the right problem.
Using share of voice

Once you have found a problem that resonates, don’t jump to shove a solution down your customers’ throats. You can continue to use practitioners to develop your market by educating your audience about the problem and the solution ecosystem. As your share of voice and share of conversation grows, your brand awareness and authority grows.

The takeaway

Killer apptitude isn’t about touting the coolest technology. It is about building a customer community before you launch a product. Practitioners can help you find and build that community with authenticity.

Ultimately, this requires a team of experts in the customer problem, not just your solution. Building your company’s killer apptitude inspires you to build that team of practitioners who can imagine a world with solutions because they live your customers’ problems. Killer apptitude values the voice of the customer. It all starts with “What if?” content from practitioners. It builds with measuring share of voice and share of conversation, and ends with market domination.


Yolanda is a scientist, writer, marketer, coach and avid runner who lives and works in Livermore, CA.  She founded Common SciSense, a marketing company for technical products, and co-founded founderTRACTION, lean marketing services for startups.