Yesterday and today this blog has had several thoughtful responses/comments to the past two posts from Grant Martin and Paula Jones of Tensilica. Because this blog generally has a lot of my bitching about how bad marketing is in technology niches I thought it would be worth making a mention of just how good Tensilica's is.
The most public face of Tensilica is Grant. He writes a lot of stuff and not necessarily about Tensilica. He's involved in scads of technical committees, speaks, presents, sits on panels and is pretty much an industry advocate. Paula develops and implements marketing and communication strategies. The company overall is dedicated to marketing in an industry that is almost wholly focused on sales. Their efforts have been so good that Tensilica is almost an industry niched in itself. It is both vendor, customer and researcher to the general public.
Grant and Paula find great value in technical conferences, advertising, PR, direct mail, social media for one reason: they do it right. They understand that not everything can be measured, but they do take time to do a lot more measurement than most any tech company I know. Like everyone else in the industry, business is not great, but at the same time, Tensilica's business is not really as bad as most everyone else.
So just to be clear, the reason Tensilica still sees value and gets value out of traditional forms of marketing like trade shows and PR; the reason the company seems to be as visible and successful as they are is because they have invested in real marketing and they are always on the look for something new.
If more companies followed their lead, we'd all be in a lot better shape right now.