Back in 2012, Futurist.com published an article titled The future of marketing starts with cross-disciplinary thinking. In that vein, we have been consulting with creative athletes to see how their secrets of success can boost the impact of digital marketing. That’s cross-disciplinary thinking squared!
One of these athletes is Logan Broadbent, the number-two ranked boomerang thrower in the world—not just the United States, the world! Logan also recently taped his second appearance on the kick-butt television show American Ninja Warrior and finished strong in the Boston Marathon.
You’d think with all of his successes, he wouldn’t have too many bad habits to confess. The reality is, however, that Logan has bad habits like anyone else, but he’s willing to put in the work to recognize them, acknowledge them, and then overcome them.
One example: in boomerang competitions Logan must perform “hackey” catches. To do this he needs to throw his boomerang and, as it is returning, kick it up before catching it. He used to kick using the inside of his foot, and actually got pretty good doing that. Later, though, he began realizing the benefits of kicking away from his body, because that gave him the ability to dive, which allowed him to catch the boomerang more often. But to perfect this new method—the better method—he literally had to perform it hundreds upon hundreds of times.
So, we wondered, how can we apply these insights to digital marketing?
Recognize when you’ve fallen into a rut
It’s not uncommon to spend your days crossing marketing to-do tasks off your list, doing them simply because they’re on the list. And when you keep using the same strategies and philosophies, you tend to get the same results.
That’s great if you’ve got more leads and sales than you can handle, but not so great when your results are lukewarm. Be honest—are you so used to getting lukewarm results that you no longer try to enhance your digital marketing? Are you just crossing items off your to-do list? Until you can acknowledge that you’ve fallen into a rut, it’s difficult to fix the unproductive habits that are keeping you there.
Alternate strategies take time to brainstorm and test
Let’s say you’ve taken an honest assessment of your marketing strategy and realize you need to break habits that are no longer working. It can be challenging to set aside time to determine which elements of your marketing strategy or website to test since your marketing to-do list already takes up so much of your time, and you don’t want current traffic or conversions to drop while you test.
If this is the case, it’s time to audit your to-do list. What items really aren’t necessary? Which ones can be done less often? Which ones can you assign to someone else?
Statistically relevant sample sizes can take time to collect and analyze
The reality is it takes a healthy sample size to come to a scientific conclusion about whether or not your new marketing messaging is actually an improvement. So, don’t rush through testing. If possible, test for at least two business cycles and take variables such as holidays, peak seasons, and the like into consideration when analyzing results. It’s also unlikely that you can test only once, make a decision, and then move on with brand-spanking-new, sparklingly successful marketing strategies.
Two big bad habits in digital marketing
Logan identified his less effective habits in hackey catching, which opened the door to create successful ones. Look at the following two bad habits and be honest. Are they ones your digital marketing agency needs to break?
Bad habit #1: Focusing only on yourself
Picture your team sitting in a corporate meeting. People’s faces are shining with excitement as you’re ready to unroll marketing messaging that tells everyone about your brand and how amazing you really are.