Good old Bart Simpson. Endearing himself to everyone squished inside the family car, he couldn’t stop asking this famous road-tripping question. This is the time of year where we too wonder if we “got there.” Did we build relationships with our blog? Did we build a stickier website (what’s sticky, anyway?)? Did we win the number of pitches we needed to? Did our funders back our plan for 2009?
We don’t ever finish marketing. The website goes up, and darn those R&D people — you’ve got more products to describe and sell and post online. You brainstorm, write, and test your sell script, and the potential client says, “Yes, but, what about [fill in rebuttal here]?”
Case in point. You may have noticed I’m launching the Panache Writing, Inc. site in phases. Before the New Year, we’ll add a buff portfolio and more informal ways to talk to each other instead of a Scheduled Telephone Consultation (wow, that sounds so corporate).
In a deadline-driven environment, it’s easy to think of a marketing project as something to think through, execute well, and move on to the next thing. The good thing about dwindling budgets — of course, I’m always telling you the upside of business! — is we must be even more discerning in how to apply strategy.
Beware the creative team that persists in throwing ideas at the wall hoping for something to stick. Yes, we should be more discriminate in the projects we take on, plan better, and track them much more carefully. But don’t let indecision freeze you. Pick something small and test it. Do a letter campaign of 100 instead of 10,000. Do a split test of copy on your home page instead of rewriting copy for all 500 pages. Just make sure you pick something and get moving. Now’s not the time to rest on laurels.