10 reasons marketing is like fitness
by Bryony Thomas
“A regular marketing activity plan, is like that regular exercise regime that gives you the stamina to out-pace the competition”
The thing about dipping in and out of a fitness regime is that it doesn’t work. To get fit, the ‘little and often’ approach is far more effective than big bursts followed by extended periods of inactivity. The same is true in marketing.
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New Year's Resolution"
10 ways in which achieving Watertight Marketing is like getting, and staying, fit:
IT'S HARD TO CHANGE THE HABIT OF A LIFETIME
If you've got into a groove with how you find and win business, maybe through cold-calling, mass mailing, or personal selling, moving to a more consistent marketing-led approach can be tough. It's moving from a quick-win mentality to a focus on long-term (and sustainable) results. This is like ditching the booze, taking up running, and eating a healthy-balanced diet... if these things are new to you, it's hard to suddenly start doing them overnight. This is why we always recommend starting with something manageable, then building up gradually. Like, a weekly blog post to start with, building up to a weekly blog plus quarterly paper and event. This is like starting with 4 press-ups, then 8, then 12, etc.
IF THINGS HAVE GONE TO SEED, YOU'LL NEED TO PUT IN SOME GROUNDWORK
If you've developed some sloth-like habits and piled on more than a few extra pounds, running a marathon would be seriously hard work. And, if your website is ancient, your brand is a mish-mash, and your products are more than a little flabby... doubling turnover would be a tall order. Taking time to review your current marketing operation, identifying where changes need to be made, and accepting that you'll need to dig deep (in money and energy) to get into shape first, is essential to long term success. What this often means is that you may need to do some unpicking, and make a time investment, before you see any results at all.
A REGULAR, STRUCTURED APPROACH IS BEST
Yo-Yo diets don't work. They mess with your metabolism, knock your confidence, and play havoc with your motivation. Boom and bust marketing is about as good for your business health. Stopping and starting means that you never really get good at it, and if there are prolonged periods of inactivity, you'll have to forgive people for forgetting about you. Little and often is much, much, better. Showing up frequently enough to stay on people's radar.
But, simply showing up isn't enough. This is like vanity fitness... you know, all muscle and no stamina. In marketing terms, this is all awareness activity, and no support for sales conversations or customer loyalty. Like, spending piles of cash getting people to your website, but providing nothing of interest when they get there. You need a mix of marketing tools and techniques mapped against every stage in the buying decision, so that the whole sales journey is supported. It's the equivalent of a mixed routine at the gym.
At its heart this is about stepping off the roller coaster and getting your marketing to deliver long-term, sustainable, sales results.
And, the other great thing about a company that’s marketing fit is that if their immune system is in great shape. You’re much better equipped to survive a downturn, or change in market circumstances. After all, if you were backing someone to run a marathon, you’d go for the person who’d put in the training. Your customers are no different. When times are tough, and the purchase decision really matters, they’ll choose the company that can go the distance.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Author & Founder, Watertight Marketing
Bryony Thomas is the multi-award winning creator of the Watertight Marketing methodology, captured in the best-selling book of the same name. Bryony is a popular professional speaker for entrepreneurial audiences. Bryony's impressive career includes heading up the Microsoft account in the UK aged 26, and securing the role of divisional director of marketing for FTSE 100, Experian, aged 28.