In a recent blog on Escape From Cubicle Nation entitled The First Step In Your 2013 Plan – Anchor The Why, The Whom And The What, Pamela Slim provides some valuable tips on anchoring your expectations and your commitments for the new year in order to make yourself an even better online marketer and overall individual. Slim breaks down these anchors into the answers to three overall questions:
1) What Do I Want to Create?
The first question that must be answered is what you are attempting to create in this new year. Just because your company has been making plumbing drain fittings since the 19th century does not necessarily mean the continuation of that product line is in the best interests of either your brand or its customers. In today’s world of marketing, everything that you do needs to be questioned, including the fundamentals of the product line itself. Your company wouldn’t be the first to veer away from its traditional products in order to reinvent itself in a completely innovative manner, and you should be ready to follow their need if it is in your customers’ best interests. Even if you are not going to overhaul your entire product line, you should be willing to examine the feasibility of completely reinventing your brand’s identity. Keeping your social media and online marketing presence fresh and engaging may require a wholesale reconfiguration, so dust off your creativity and imagination and get at it!
2) Why Do I Want to Create This?
The involvement in a business activity can’t just be all about the bottom line and how much money you manage to cram into the bank account between now and the close of business on New Year’s Eve. You have to make a determination as to why it’s important to you as a person, and what relevance it has to your community as a whole. In this highly globalized society we are all citizens of the world at large and therefore we have a responsibility to act in an ethical and sustainable manner. Therefore if your brand is profiting by ruining the health of its employees or damaging the environment, it doesn’t matter if it’s happening in your hometown or in an isolated village in a faraway Third World country, the negative impact is just as real and just as massive. Doing things the right way may take greater effort and investment than cutting corners but there is never any justification for getting involved in something that is outright wrong. Anything that you decide to create must pass the test of contributing positively to the world around you and must be undertaken with a commitment to success.
3) Whom Do I Want to Serve?
The Golden Rule is applicable to all forms of online marketing and merits being one of your most basic tenets of business. The best way to ensure positive results for yourself and your brand is to work hard to provide the same level of positivity for your customers. Each and every day you have to be involved and thoroughly engaged in the challenge of providing your customer base with the highest possible levels of quality and service. Your customers are the single greatest asset your brand has, and in order to achieve the heights of success that you are aspiring to you need to build that commitment and mutual trust and respect with each customer. If you are looking at your customers only as an infinite source of kvetching, grumbling and bellyaching then you have to realize that they’re not at fault but you are. It’s your brand that is failing in maintaining that critical relationship of positivity with the customer and if you look hard enough you’ll find that every bona fide complaint that comes your way is a reaction to a lapse in your provision of quality products and services, not a manifestation of an ill-mannered or spiteful customer.
Adoption of these anchors may lead you to fail, but even if you do, you will have learned valuable lessons which will increase the chances that you will be successful the next time around.