A marketing strategy is a lot like a five-course meal; it is procedural, thorough, and should be seen through to the end (and if done right, delicious, satisfying, and worth repeating). Bailing early not only compromises the success of the experience but results in us trying to DIY our own substitute to quench the feelings of being underwhelmed and dissatisfied (like a 2.00am toasted cheese and Doritos® sandwich).
Course one: Soup (want)
Soup excites us about what is to come, but on its own, is hardly satisfying. No one goes out with an intention of hooking into soup unless you just got braces or are sick. Soup starts the process off but is violently frustrating without the rest of the meal.
Course two: Appetiser (plan)
Almost anything can be an appetiser – beans in a lettuce leaf, salted tofu, a snail. But an appetiser of some sort is essential to the success of the meal.
However, if the meal ends at the appetiser, we go home upset that we just wasted a heap of time and money for some soup and a chicken wing and leave hungry. Not to mention that our colleagues wonder why the hell we bothered starting the meal in the first place.
Course three: Salad (quick wins)
In some cases, we may finish the salad course and lose our eagerness for the rest of the meal and call it a night. We will probably wake up to stomach gurgles in the middle of the night but we can justify the decision not to complete the meal by considering the time and money we may have saved by coming home early, despite harbouring feelings of deep dissatisfaction smothered in faux practicality.
Course four: Main (action)
The main course is why we endure pea soup, ant-infused rice cups, and spiced kale medley. The main is why we are here and what we have been looking forward to from the beginning – the engine room of the experience. The success of the meal hinges on the main course.
Course five: Desert (review)
Desert is the time where we reflect on the previous four courses; what we liked, what we did not like, what we would like to experience next time, how it may have been better.
Occasionally if we are haters of life, we will skip desert. But often, nailing desert turns a great meal into a mind-blowing meal that is worth repeating and highly rewarding.
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If you are considering undertaking “marketing”, consider doing so with a strategic purpose. If you are considering undertaking a marketing strategy, see it through. Half-assing it will only leave you and those around you dissatisfied, frustrated, and unfulfilled.