Is Your Skin Thick Enough to be a Marketer?

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One thing I learned early on working in marketing, if you don’t have thick skin, you’re not going to last long. When you’re working in a creative field where there’s no one set way that things have to be done, you’ll run into disagreements with your clients. It’s inevitable.

Sometimes, you’ll have what you think is an amazing idea, and the client will shoot it down instantly. They’ll instead want to do something that you see as unoriginal and uninspired, and you might get angry or even have your feelings hurt that they thought your idea sucked.

Other times, clients or just the general public can be downright nasty about their dislike for your work. They will let you know in no uncertain terms that they think you created a bunch of garbage. It’s never easy to hear such harsh criticism, but you have to learn to accept it if you want to keep working in this field.

So, what can you do to make sure you don’t let rejection get you down?


  • Never take it personally—Even if the person criticizing your work takes things to a personal level, don’t take it personally. This is just business. You’re being paid for your work. You’re a professional. You can’t take it personally or you’ll never be successful in this business.
  • Embrace criticism—If you’re too sensitive to tolerate criticism of your work, you’ll never get better at what you do. I’m always trying to become a better copywriter, so I’ve learned to view criticism as an opportunity to find ways to improve my writing skills. At the very least, even if the criticism is completely off base
  • Know when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em—There are times that, as a professional, you have to stick to your guns. If the client wants you to do things in a way that you just know is wrong and know will have a negative result, don’t do it. Your reputation is on the line, and it’s better to walk away from the project than to continue. Other times, you might need to swallow your pride, admit that maybe you missed the mark, and deliver what they want.


Do you agree that thick skin is an essential characteristic for marketers?

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