A home run is an incredible way to win the game. You risk it all on one big swing, hoping that night will be the night you single-handedly make the difference.
However most teams in the MLB this season average less than 1 home run per game. Usually, games are won by singles or doubles, accumulated over an inning – not a magical moment of individual brilliance.
So it is with our work or any pursuit we are trying to excel in. Undoubtedly, we dream of a home run each time we wake up in the morning, hoping that today will be the day the crowd finally witnesses our hidden talent.
Though instead of aiming to hit it out of the park each time, we should try to simply hit the ball first. Then, hit singles. Hit singles as consistently and reliably as anyone. Turn up, deliver what was promised, contribute, improve, share. Hit singles every time.
Eventually, you might even hit a home run. Yet until you are known as the person who is reliable, the one-off remarkable success will only be viewed as a fluke.
True success comes from mastering the basics, over and over again. This is a skill as rare as smashing it into the crowd.
Perhaps one of the greatest trends in digital behaviour is a lack of concentration.
Tweets are short. We use multiple devices at once. Often, we never use apps more than once.
Information is everywhere, uncensored and almost free for all. How then, do we expect to keep telling our stories the same way? How can we expect to sell the same way as we did before – when people used to pay attention to ads and billboards?
All we know is that we can’t follow the status quo and sell the facts. We have to have a unique story or emotional connection to break through the noise.
2 things we can try:
Tell our story only to people who are predisposed to the product.
Tell it in a way that focuses on comedy, pain, fear or motivation – not on the boring facts.
No mention of a product Apple didn’t directly try to sell us anything. No prices, sales or loud people screaming at us to rush into store.
A story that connects It’s about emotion, a simple story of family, creativity, love and a unique shared experience. It captures something we all hope for each Christmas. No complications, villians or heros – just a kid who uses his phone to make something special.
This ad is great because it makes us feel something without being sold something, but we still remember it’s from Apple.
People say the best authors write in a way that makes us think we could’ve written it. For marketers, this ad gives us similar hope. Anyone could’ve made this ad.
Is it the robotic voices that ask you to reveal your personal details out loud on public transport?
Could it be when they pretend to check with their supervisor before coming back with ‘no, we can’t do that’?
Or is it when we are transferred to 5 different departments before someone can help?
One overlooked reason why our customers become so frustrated with our service is how we structure our teams.
The people tasked with delivering and improving what we offer (marketing) are completely separate from the team that helps support that offer (customer service). In fact, they’re not only separated on the organisational chart, but often by countries and time zones too.
As a marketer, the best thing you can do to truly understand your user’s experience is not to spend time on social media listening, send out surveys or cold call customers – it’s to spend one day in your support centre.
Suddenly, you will see the frustration gap. You’ll see why quality support staff are essential to any business and why so many businesses fail.
You’ll see where potential customers drop out, why carts are abandoned and how a 1-step process can morph into 20.