In CultureTalk, Inbound Marketing, Leadership, Marketing Strategy

How to Escape Impulse Shopping for your Communications Strategy

Beware of shiny new objects.

Have you ever grocery shopped while hungry? Been lured with a buy two get one free sale? Were you accidentally alone wandering in Target? Then you’re probably all too familiar with the impulse purchase.

If you’re like me, you wake up every morning to a seemingly limitless spread of new tips, tactics, ideas, and methodologies for better marketing, advertising, or public relations. It can cause both intense FOMO (fear of missing out), or make you want to never read Twitter again. But, unfortunately, even if I stopped reading Twitter, I’d hear about it as soon as I turned on the Today show, or listened to the radio, or went to work…or talked to my mom.

1342043973127_1599022With all of these new fancy options out there, how do we stick to a plan?

The communications landscape is changing almost hourly. If you search the word “marketing” in Google, you’ll get almost 2 billion results. BILLION. For every result there is a new fangled idea tempting you to shift and reposition your marketing strategy.

Our tools and tactics will change, but marketing will always be about people. While tastes and habits have changed, people will always be people. When it feels like you’re spinning down the rabbit hole, you don’t have to eat the first thing you see.

Okay – all together now – let’s take a deep breath. Refocus. Walk away from the shiny objects.

Three simple questions to ask to keep your communications strategy in check:

Does this align with my business goals?

We all need to eat. Every marketing, advertising, or public relations move you make must align with a business goal. (This goes beyond a goal of “do more business.”) If you want to increase sales by $100,000 this year, and building a customized mobile app is going to cost you $30,000, is it going to make you $130,000 or more? Sure, you could make the $100,000 elsewhere. But then what’s the point of your mobile app? Just for fun? Get to your goals faster (and save a boatload of money) by overlapping communications strategies with business plans.

Does this align with my culture?

What do you believe in? Why are you in business in the first place? If you’re a company that believes in ‘saving the day,’ a new communications tactic might help you respond quicker or get there faster. Is education a key tenet in your culture code? Then how will this help you help others? If you treat your core values like a compass, you’ll never sway off course.

It this a fit for my target personas or audience?

Considering the current user landscape, it might be kind of weird if AARP started using SnapChat. Or, it probably wouldn’t go over well if MTV teamed up with E*TRADE to offer 401k advice. Someday? Maybe. But if the intention of a new communications tactic is to reach customers, then you’d be smart to meet them in the right context with the right content.

Have faith and do a gut check

“If you jump, I jump.” Right? Nope. As romantic as it was for Rose to say this to Jack as the Titanic sunk into the icy Atlantic Ocean…she didn’t make room for him on that floating door. Just because everyone else is jumping on Periscope, Meerkat, Snap Stories or whatever else is brand new…doesn’t mean it’s where you have to be.

At Allegory, we believe that intuition is a business skill and following your gut will usually get you to the right place. By all means, keep an open mind as you’re walking through that Target dollar aisle. But don’t forget to ask yourself, “Do I really need this?”

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