1. Start with a plan
When Columbus set out, he had a plan. Sure, he missed India and found the Americas instead, but his mission was still a success. He found new land.
Start now with a plan for your marketing in 2012. Even if your journey takes you off course, you may still find success in unlikely places. The important thing is to keep sailing and not abandon the marketing ship.
2. Bring the right supplies
Columbus loaded up the Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria with all of the supplies he would need for his journey. He even stopped at the Canary Islands to get some more supplies before starting across the Atlantic.
In business marketing our supplies are different than food and water, but just as essential. Load up your ship with a wide array of marketing tools. Pack email marketing, social media and direct mail into your marketing plan. Consider hosting events or webinars tailored to your industry. Resolve to try a marketing tactic you have never tried before such as telemarketing. Each marketing tool has a unique benefit and reaches different audiences.
3. Tell a great story
When Columbus returned from the New World, his letter to Ferdinand and Isabella outlined his thoughts and recommendations about how Spain should proceed in their dealings with the New World. Their Highnesses listened to everything Columbus recommended and continued to fund his trips for years to come.
As you think about your marketing, what story are you telling about your business? Is it a story that will make your customers want to come back year after year? By telling a story that your customers want to listen to, you will build your brand loyalty and create repeat customers for years to come. Take some time to ask your customers what they want to hear from you, what types of offers they appreciate most, and what new products or services they would like to see. Use their feedback to build a new story for your business.
Columbus set sail to unseen destinations and found the New World. As 2011 begins to wind down, take some time to dream about a new world for your business. Use the lessons from Columbus to generate success in 2012.