Do You Have What It Takes to Survive?
Remember learning about the concept of “survival of the fittest” in school? Those who are able to adapt to the changes that happen around them are the ones who will win in the end. This applies to many areas of life. Just as people and animals need survival skills in the wild, businesses need marketing survival skills to stay up to date with their marketing plans. When it comes to marketing, it seems like new outlets and techniques come about every time you turn around. Suddenly, you find yourself in the middle of unfamiliar territory with no idea how to navigate it. Take a look at this list of marketing survival skills and ask yourself whether you have what it takes to adapt and survive.
Take a cue from the Boy Scouts on this one. Make a plan. Don’t just jump into marketing without doing some research first. Look into what avenues of advertising typically work well in your industry, and then cater your approach to that. It is also extremely important to tailor your marketing plan to accommodate changes at any time. Pay attention to what’s going on around you, and be ready to respond to anything. Take real-time marketing as an example. Social media has made it possible to respond to an event as soon as it happens. Oreo took advantage of real-time media in a brilliant way during this year’s Super Bowl, when it tweeted and created the hashtag “dunk in the dark” after the power failure in the Superdome. This is a prime example of staying on your toes when it comes to marketing. Change comes about quickly these days, and if you’re not paying attention, your competition will pass you by.
Don’t Forget Your Compass
Just as a hiker needs a compass to find his or her way in the woods, you need a navigator to guide you through changes in marketing. Your guide might be a simple map of goals that help you steer your business along the right path. These will act as a benchmark to look toward while you traverse unfamiliar territory. If you find yourself floundering, stop, take a look at your end goal, and make a new plan. Another good compass to have is a social media manager. Even if you think you know everything there is to know about social media networking, you might not have time to use it as effectively as possible. Consider hiring someone who specializes in social media and can help you get the most from each platform. Besides knowing how to use Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn effectively, this person also has an ear to the ground and can keep you informed of changes in marketing as they’re happening.
Organize a “First-Aid Kit”
Your business will take a hit at some point. To counteract any marketing disasters that occur, you need to have a damage control plan in place. Technological changes in marketing have made it possible for companies to get information out to their clients and customers immediately, no matter the time of day. The benefit of things like social media, blogs, and email is that you’ll be able to implement damage control from anywhere.
In this case, your supplies are the tools you arm yourself with to help you face changes in marketing. Some of these tools are much easier to come by through technological advances in marketing. Communication is the most important tool you need. The customer has never been easier to reach than they are now, especially with the advent of social media. Instead of simply posting to social media networks, however, make sure you are interacting with your clients and customers. Communication is now a two-way street in the marketing world, and keeping a close eye on what customers are saying could actually help you start to adapt before changes take place. Knowledge about your target audience is another extremely important tool, and it’s one that is now easily obtainable through your social media network. It’s also important to keep up to date on the next big thing. One of the best ways to do this is to subscribe to websites, forums, and blogs that talk about what’s happening in technology and online media.
Make Sure You Have Sustenance
No, we’re not talking about food and beverages for the office party. Here, sustenance means fuel, and the fuel that energizes you is your current marketing plan. When change comes about, you have to roll with it, but things will be easier if your existing marketing plan is strong yet flexible. Keeping up with your plan, modifying it often to suit your and your customers’ needs, will ensure that you won’t be completely left out in the cold when something new comes along. Your existing plan should be kept as current as possible, so it can keep you going while you try out new strategies. While you may be targeting new customers with advertising, know that you should also concentrate on nurturing leads you already have. Customers who are loyal to your brand will help you keep business going while you’re working to adapt. If you’ve worked hard to build your brand and you have a strong online presence, you might be able to adapt to marketing changes quickly.
The world has become incredibly fast-paced, and it’s not going to slow down anytime soon. It seems that new technology is released every week that allows consumers to get information and products they need within mere seconds. The faster you can reach your customers, the better, and the only way to keep ahead of the game is to learn to adapt to changes in the marketing world.
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