Hope Is Not a Marketing Strategy
Updated: Aug 3
Do you suffer from Field of Dreams Syndrome?
It’s the blind optimism that leads you down the path of believing your target audience will naturally flock towards your business.
The “if we build it, they will come” mentality, so to speak.
In an era in which we can get the word out with the click of a button, falling into the trap of marketing faith is all too easy. Whether you think your company might just “get discovered” by your content being in front of the right set of eyes, or that your insights will be so compelling that they’ll just spread like wildfire — think again.
Don’t get me wrong, your tactical efforts to get the word out about your brand are essential! The problem arises, however, when your tactics aren’t supported with any strategy other than hope.
From building blocks to blueprint
Many small businesses skip right from their goals to their frantically hopeful efforts to achieve them. Taking your brand to the next level, however, means tying everything together with a strategic plan.
Your strategy is the overarching plan, and the thread that runs through everything you set out to do. Strategy offers a clear plan to follow as you set out on your journey, keeping you in check.
You wouldn’t set out to build a new house or add on that needed addition without a blueprint — so why do we do that in business? Just as you’d have an architect devise a blueprint to guide the creation of your expansion, the same must be done with your marketing efforts.
Strategy is a guide that informs your actions and decisions. Without it, your tactical efforts will be a hopeful shot in the dark at best.
Navigating the waves of change
As a business owner (especially a business owner in post-COVID 2021!), you know that the road to a successful implementation isn’t always smooth. Twists and turns are inevitable — not only in your brand’s market, but in the world at large.
Why invest in your strategy if your company could have to pivot in the face of a major event, like a world pandemic, you ask? Well... this IS why, actually.
While you may be advised to shift your tactical efforts drastically, including cutting budgets in response to market (and societal) changes, developing a strategic plan will inform how to make those tactical pivots, while retaining your customer base and maintaining alignment with all that you’ve built to date.
Hope doesn’t pay the bills
Whether you lead a startup, a small business, or a middle-market company, times are tough for businesses.
Owners often kick the idea of a marketing strategy to the curb because they see it as an extra expense, not an investment.
Worried that investing in a marketing strategy won’t be worth the cost? The harsh reality is this... the cost of strategy is much more effective than the alternative: the cost of marketing failure.
Without a strategy to guide you forward, all the money you spend on a media buy, creative development efforts, production costs, and other services could be for not if the assets you develop don’t align with a clear, overarching strategy, or simply don’t work.
A shocking number of business leaders claim that poor implementation is the central reason why their company fails to reach its goals. This is no surprise when so many allow strategy to be an afterthought.
Hope doesn’t pay the bills; careful planning and thoughtful planning does. It’s time to stop letting marketing be driven by tactics alone.