May you live in interesting times. Is that ancient expression a curse or a blessing? I think it depends on what you define to be “interesting” and more importantly how you adapt to it. If you define interesting to mean unpredictable, challenging and threatening - then clearly we are living in interesting times. Business these days is more like shooting the rapids in a rubber raft than canoeing in a duck pond.
It’s too easy to be mesmerized by the danger of capsizing. If you focus on the rocks – that’s where you will go. The secret is to look for and steer to the high water and paddle like a fiend.
Marketing Resources for You
|Menu||Marketing in Turbulent Times|
Who is this book for?
Read & Write Book Reviews
Read Book Excerpt
Buy the Book
Key Questions for the CEO
What CEOs Say
Work with George Torok
Train & Inspire your People
Book George Torok
Preview George Torok
Free Marketing Tips
About George Torok
Contact George Torok
May you live in interesting times.
Is that ancient expression a curse or a blessing? I think it depends on what you define to be "interesting" and more importantly how you adapt to it.
If you define interesting to mean unpredictable, challenging and threatening - then clearly we are living in interesting times. Business these days is more like shooting the rapids in a rubber raft than canoeing in a duck pond.
It's too easy to be mesmerized by the danger of capsizing. If you focus on the rocks - that's where you will go. The secret is to look for and steer to the high water and paddle like a fiend.
Survival is not the goal
If you set your sights on surviving you could slip and sink. If you set your target as thriving then you might flourish.
How do you thrive in these turbulent waters?
Marketing is the result of all the messages that you and your staff send. In fact your staff sends more powerful marketing messages than all the advertising you ever do. Therefore marketing becomes the end result of almost every business decision you make.
Think long term
Don't make knee-jerk decisions especially about business strategy. Gather as much relevant information as you can. Seek the advice of people you respect. Be clear on your purpose. Examine both the short term and long term effects of major decisions. Once you decide, act quickly and confidently. Your staff will be looking to you for leadership and hope. Be open to course corrections when and as needed while clearly focused on the objectives and purpose.
Prepare for disaster
The fire department prepares for disaster - they don't focus on it or obsess about it. They think, plan, acquire the best tools and rehearse their response so they can move swiftly when and if needed. Where are you exposed and how can you protect yourself? When you are shooting the rapids it is foolish to save money by not buying life vests.
Don't make across-the-board cuts. That's a political response and just dumb. Instead categorize expenditures and investments into four categories.
Review does not mean reduce or eliminate. Training can be more important during turbulent times. This is when your skills and those of your staff should be at their best. You don't want to be losing sales because of poor customer service or quality control. Categorize your training needs into three categories.
It only takes one person's mistake or sabotage to sink your raft.
Too many companies stupidly make major cuts in advertising during turbulent times. My guess is that they did not review their advertising during the good times. Categorize your advertising into three categories.
In turbulent times nothing is more important than relationships. We will warmly remember those who suffered with us or helped us through the turbulent times. Invest strongly in strengthening the relationship with your best clients. Segment your clients into three categories:
Important note for you
Relationships are more important that branding - especially during turbulent times. When you have the choice to invest in branding or invest in relationships - choose relationships. It is the far more profitable choice for small and medium sized enterprises. Remember that big business invests in branding because they cannot build relationships. Don't be fooled by the branding hype.
Online Social Media
Don't hide. Use the Internet to keep your message and name in front of people. If you haven't yet created your blog, this is a good time to start. Post regular tips, news and positive messages. Register and maintain your accounts on social networking sites like Linkedin.com, Plaxo.com and Facebook.com. Explore the use of YouTube.com and Flickr.com to publish product news and demonstrations. Barack Obama, the new US president used these tools to successfully promote his presidential campaign and he plans to use them to convey his messages to the American people and the world.
May you thrive in interesting times.
© George Torok simplifies marketing for the confused and stressed entrepreneur. He identifies fundamental marketing principles and offers practical techniques. Get your free copy of "50 Power Marketing Ideas" when you register for your free Power Marketing Tips at www.PowerMarketing.ca. George Torok is available for media interviews and speaking engagements. Call 905-335-1997.
© George Torok is co-author of the bestseller, "Secrets of Power Marketing: Promote Brand You". He is author of the ebook, "Your Guide to Networking Success". To order your copy of this networking guide or learn more visit www.NetworkingExposed.com. To receive your free copy of "50 Power Marketing Ideas" visit www.PowerMarketing.ca.