If marketing often feels like Sisyphus pushing the rock up the hill, only to have it crash down repeatedly upon you, you’re not alone. In fact, big as well as small companies—and everybody in between—are struggling.
If you’re feeling like Sisyphus, and are unsure about where to go next marketing-wise, here are a couple of coping strategies that can help right the ship:
- Step back. Most of us are too close to our businesses. That skews perspectives and often obscures excellent marketing opportunities. One way to step back is to take a break and revisit the issues when you’re feeling refreshed. Another is to bring in fresh sets of eyes to view the situation and make recommendations.
- Make sure your product/service is all it can be. Will Rogers famously stated that if advertisers spent the same amount of money improving their product as they did advertising it, they wouldn’t need to advertise it. This is more true than ever in the age of social media, the ultimate lie detector. If you are doing quality work, treating your employees with respect, sincerely acknowledging your customers/clients and other stakeholders, your marketing efforts can reinforce these positive elements. If not, get your act together because no amount of advertising or other marketing-related promotion will offset a negative reputation that’s getting propagated throughout the mainstream and social media worlds.
- Distinguish yourself from the competition. Too often, companies emulate their competitors to “play it safe.” Entrepreneurs, much like football coaches who play not to lose versus playing too win, are by nature risk-takers. So, don’t stop taking risks when marketing. Do something bold, something that will set you apart from the pack.
- Plan your work; work your plan. Another common entrepreneurial trait is flying by the seat of one’s pants. We all need some structure in our lives to get organized and to stay disciplined. Your marketing plan doesn’t have to be fancy. Minimally, make sure to address who, what, when, where and how—then do your best to stay on point. It may not be perfect, but it will give you an objective document against which you can measure your progress and where you need to re-evaluate and/or regear.
Mark Lusky, President, Mark Lusky Communications (aka The Happy Curmudgeon) is a veteran writer, storyteller and author, with 40+ years of public relations, advertising, marketing and journalism experience. READ BIO