Earlier this month Adweek released it’s 10 Best Ads of 2017
There are some really good ones on the list, as well as others for which I must not have proper appreciation. George Clooney silently hawking Nespresso and the Heinz ad with its origin in Mad Men were my favorites.
Social issues had an important role in the list with several of the 10 Best reflecting issues that made headlines and kitchen conversation material this year. Race. Truth. Suicide. Equality. Each relevant and meaningful.
While I don’t relate to some of list as “ads” they nonetheless grabbed attention.
The top spot on the list was an example of this: State Street Global Advisors “Fearless Girl”. I certainly didn’t see that as an ad. But, I guess it did garner attention, both positive and negative, for the firm.
The “Fearless Girl” is a bronze sculpture by Kristen Visbal and depicts a young girl standing in a strong pose, with her hands on her hips and her chin forward. The sculpture is located directly in front of the famous charging bull of Wall Street fame, making the pose even more striking. The intended message is about gender diversity and hiring more women for leadership positions and board members.
Fearless Girl has reportedly generated over seven million dollars ($7M) in free advertisement; television, radio and print coverage. So I guess from an “ad” perspective it worked.
When I view the sculpture I can’t help but wonder: What make her fearless? What does she know that we don’t?
Fearless is defined as “without fear; bold or brave”. I certainly want be fearless and I’m sure you do to.
As you may know Valens Point helps technology consulting companies grow. We do that by creating marketing systems that help these companies attract and retain ideal customers. And marketing is an area where I see many business owners act with fear. They may not call it fear, but they certainly aren’t being bold and brave.
Why do I call it fear?
These business owners shy away from narrowing their focus to their most beneficial customers, choosing instead to try please everyone.
Fearful business owners choose to ignore their difference and concentrate on being the same as everyone else.
Business owners that act out of fear just do what everyone else is doing versus determining the best way for them to connect to their ideal customers.
I believe being fearless is a far better attitude. Being fearless separates you from competitors and establishes your consulting firm as different from the rest of the companies that say they do the same as you.
Three ways you can have Fearless Marketing in 2018
The first step in becoming fearless is to commit yourself to developing a solid marketing strategy. A marketing strategy will at the very least define your ideal customer, determine your message, identify the difference you make, outline the channels you will use, and design a customer experience.
Your marketing strategy establishes the basics for all you do. Without a unifying strategy you are left to use a set of unconnected tactics that will not lead to the results you are wanting.
Having a defined marketing strayegy allows you to use the most fearless word in all of business: NO. Since you have defined what you’ll do, it’s much easier and powerful to decline the marketing tactics that tempt you to spend time and money.
Having a strategy is the first step to creating a marketing plan, budget, and calendar. These are the essenc of a marketing system, a system just like others in your business. I use the word system here because it implies two important concepts.
First, systems are consistent. If you do A and B, your result should be C. Consistency leads to accurate measurements and measurement leads to the second concept: systems can be improved. If you are consistently executing your system you can begin to make changes in an effort to test and improve. If you don’t create systems testing for improvement is virtually impossible. You’ll have no idea if the results are a reflection of your tweaks or something disconnected from the system.
Marketing systems give you the consistent and improvements, which are necessary for results.
Once you have a marketing strategy and marketing system in place you can begin to invest confidently in what is working. You will be able to scale your system to the tempo and cadence that suits your needs.
No longer will you be fearful of spending money on marketing. You’ll understand when and how your investment will produce results. You’ll move from a “hope” based marketing approach to a more confident, clear, and controllable system.
Strategy, systems, and scale are your steps to ignore fear in your marketing. Using this approach you can work towards the results you want: more leads, more customers, more revenue, and more profit.
Can you be fearless in 2018?
Are you a technology consulting firm needs help getting your strategy and system in place? Start with the Valens Point Marketing Checkup.
Fearless Girl Face Image Credit: Albin Lohr-Jones/Pacific Press/Zuma