During a recent trip back home to see family in Colorado, I thought of the similarities between mountain climbing and marketing a business.
Climbing mountains such as Kilimanjaro or Everest require much time, planning and training; these expeditions are even difficult for the world’s most experienced climbers. The climbers that make it the top understand the value of training and strategizing. Marketing a business, although not warranting the same physical requirements, involves having a similar mindset. There are four key elements that both successful mountain climbers and businesses follow to make it all the way to the peak: Timing, Implementation, Setting Goals and Analyzing Results.
When mountain climbers begin their training process, the first thing they develop is a timeline or regimen. For the notion of when to start, sooner rather than later is the general rule of thumb. To put it simply, you can never be over prepared! The same goes for marketing your business; ideally, you should develop a marketing calendar or schedule that you follow in order to know which activities should be deployed when. Not all of your marketing activities need to occur at the same time, but you should be doing some sort of marketing all the time.
Next, you need to establish the core exercises or marketing initiatives to implement within your business. Just as a mountain climber wouldn’t focus on exercising just one particular body part; you shouldn’t just put all of your marketing efforts into one specific channel. The best way to reach your audience is through a multi-channel approach – communicating with your end user through various marketing mediums.
Setting Goals –
Even though each element has its importance, setting concrete goals may be the most significant. What is the point of training or marketing if you don’t know what you are trying to achieve? How will you know when you achieved it? Your goals should be audacious enough to keep you motivated, but obtainable. Each of your marketing programs should have its own goal: awareness, lead generation, customer retention, etc.
Most mountain climbers through the timing and implementation stages, are recording and gathering the results so that they can review and understand the areas that require more attention or improvement. As a business owner you should be doing the same thing. The ability to track the effectiveness and efficiency of your marketing will help you find the areas that not only need improvement, but the areas that are working the best. This is also where setting goals will help you analyze activities properly. Over time, you will be able to definitively know the core “exercises” that work best for your business.
Regularly analyze your results and stick with it. Happy trekking—er, marketing.