Hi, my name is Sage Osterfeld and I’m a marketing communications pro for hire. I help my clients create successful product and marketing strategies and then execute those strategies with all the tools available — public relations, advertising, websites & social media, brochures, you name it — without spending the gross national product of Belgium to do it.
Having been in the marcom and PM business for twenty-odd years, I’ve seen so much stuff — good, bad, and ugly — that I’ve developed a set of three simple principles that all but guarantee a successful product and marketing communications program:
- Good marketing easy if you know what you’re doing. And it’s not at all expensive.
- Simpler is better. Complicated is interesting, but it hardly ever goes as planned.
- The purpose of marketing is simple: sell a product or service.
Not exactly the wisdom of Buddha I know, but most of my clients find it refreshing compared to the many other pitches they’ve heard.
Maybe you do too.
If you’re interesting in more information on my services, please click here.
I’m what you’d call a “seasoned” marketing communications professional. I began my career in the mid-1980’s with a degree in journalism and early stints as a newspaper writer and editor, ad agency copywriter, paste-up artist, PR manager, and tradeshow coordinator.
I eventually moved into management and spent a decade or so directing marketing communications for companies in software development, multimedia, Internet services, security and mobile technology fields.
I spent the latter half of the 1990’s as director of marketing for Websense, leaving the company when it went public in 2000 to become a founding partner of full service marketing communications agency. Several years later I left the agency to become an independent consultant.
These days I make my living as a sort of marketing gun-for-hire for small companies — fresh start-ups, venture-backed firms looking to build marketshare, and more established companies who might be preparing for a merger / acquisition, initial public offering, or some other type of exit.
My clients are primarily software developers, Internet companies, e-tailers, mobile services, and similar technology fields, but I also count microbreweries, household products manufacturers, and an industrial diesel engine builder as customers. Variety keeps my mind nimble and interested in what I do.
Contrary to what you may have been told, the practice of marketing communications is neither a black art, nor particularly difficult. And developing a good marcomm program is actually pretty easy if you just keep a few principles in mind.
- Good marcomm is easy — you can do a lot of it yourself
Yes, it’s an admission that drives a lot of my marcomm colleagues crazy, but it’s true. Most businesspeople — marketing professionals or not, understand the basics of good marketing — they just don’t know how easy it is to do. I make it a point to show my clients how they can do a lot of this stuff themselves, inexpensively, easily and effectively.
- Simpler is better
Given the option of a simple, straightforward marketing program or a complex, multi-layered, glitzy marcomm campaign, the simple program is better 99 times out of 100. Simple programs execute quickly, offer cost-effective, easy to measure results and can be replicated time after time. Not true with the complicated ones.
- The purpose of marketing communications is to sell
This is the bottom line of marcomm, but you’d be surprised how many people forget this. Nebulous but important-sounding things like “brand recognition” and “target audience outreach” are not purposes for marcomm, they’re means to an end. And that end is the sale of a product (service, person, what-have-you).
These three concepts are the foundation for every one of my client engagements, and you’ll hear (or read) me repeat them often. If they sound like common sense principles, then perhaps you’ll consider becoming a client.
You can read about the services I offer here.
If you have other questions, please contact me.