Are Best Practices the Easy Way Out…

Or Is The New Generation of Marketing Strategies Taking over?

 

Using best practices within your marketing strategy seems like the obvious choice. Why wouldn’t you utilise tried and tested ways of working, if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it! But as new methodologies are coming into fruition, it is causing many businesses to question, are these old systems dated? It’s important to stay current within any industry, but crucial that you marketing strategies are one step ahead of your competitors.

It’s no wonder we are beginning to see companies explore innovative new approaches. The rise of social media has revolutionised the way we conduct our marketing. Many businesses are even questioning if they need a website these days. (Check out our ‘Do I Really Need A Website’ blog to find out, spoiler…you do!)

While I understand people’s eagerness to pioneer the movement, I’m a little reluctant to discard the classics just yet. After all, they are tried and tested methods, lets not reinvent the wheel. Best practices are strategies that are still highly regarded within the marketing industry for their success. From these foundations you can grow and adapt your business, learning from the accomplishments of others. But as we advance within this new age of technology, is it time for an upgrade? Or is it just a case of reeducating ourselves using the tools we already have at our disposal?

There are pros and cons to both sides, but as you develop your business you need to understand the difference. Whether you want to implement them into your marketing strategies or understand the agenda of others. It’s always worth being able to spot which tactics work, and which are a colossal flop.

Having pondered on the positives and negatives of both arguments I have concluded 6 elements that are important to consider.

How revolutionary are these new ideas?

If you are considering implementing new practices, it’s important to consider whether new radical ways of working are that much different from the old.

Weigh up the reasons as to why the situations are similar or dissimilar. Their findings should be backed up with data that has been built upon best practice. So you can be certain that their discoveries are a development of working practices. Not just a stab in the dark at a new concept.

If so, you must further question are the new strategies ground-breaking enough to cast aside traditional practices. It is important to consider if the implementation of these strategies is wise for your business’s needs. Is it worth the risk?

Modernise the Mundane

Best practice can lead to teams becoming complacent with tracking performances. You mustn’t rest on your laurels. Implemented practices should be constantly monitored to track metrics ensuring that they are working for your business. And if the success rate is not living up to the hype, adapt accordingly.

Performance should be planned proficiently and requires constant evaluation. Your teams must have the skills to meet these requirements. Failure to implement this could lead to a lull in the progression of your business. While it is important to appreciate marketing foundations, empower your teams to get creative and think outside the box.

Can they build upon the success of others whilst executing their right to artistic license?

To leap or not to leap…

Relying on best practices could be causing you to reject ideas that could revolutionise marketing strategies. Allow your teams to explore, test, and discover new methodologies. Just because something is a protocol, it doesn’t necessarily mean it is the best response.

Solutions must develop to stay up to date with technology. These methods can be monitored using algorithms to track their success rate. Not every solution will be a resounding success, but by taking a leap of faith, could you uncover something remarkable?

Although this is a risky move, it could be the thing that puts your business on the map. If this is a strategy you wish to pursue, make sure you contemplate the risk factors. There’s having the courage to try something new, and throwing your business away on a hunch. Be strategic, don’t be afraid to take a risk, but don’t put all your eggs in one basket.

 

If your risk does not pay off, you always have best practices in place to take the fall.

Does the cost reflect the benefits?

 

Pioneering the new way of marketing could certainly cost you a pretty penny. So you must understand the benefits and analyse whether the price is justified. The advantage of best practice is that it’s rooted in years of trial and error. It has been refined to establish the best ways of working. You are paying to gain access to the experience of others, so you don’t make the same mistakes.

In theory, implementing best practices successfully into your strategy should help your business grow. But it is not a one size fits all model. You must ask yourself if best practice is right for your specific company. Or does the nature of your business lend itself better modernised ways of working?

Tread on the side of caution

 

The sole purpose of best practice marketing is to sell your product. This could be anything from a tangible object to a personal brand. The more you sell, the more insight you will gain into the needs of your customers.

It may be in your best interest to explore new concepts within best practice and promote your findings. However, you must verify its validity before fully committing to the new ways of working. You must ask yourself these questions: Why are you doing this? Are your ideas fuelled only by profit? Has your concept been tried and tested? Can you back up your ideas with concrete evidence and success rates?

You must understand exactly what you are investing in. Protecting your business without wasting not only your time and money but tarnishing your reputation. Careful analysis of schemes is always justified. Trust, but verify.

Best practice vs client expectation

Concrete evidence and reality usually aren’t aligned. A vendor following best practice would say it is important that you implement a tracking script into your webpage. That way machine learning such as google analytics can track who has been you your page and their consumer journey.

But implementing this for example could influence the loading time of your page. You must weigh up the benefits of best practice vs the reality of customer experience. If you are seeing no correlation between tracking services and click-through rates, it may be time to consider a new strategy.

At the end of the day, it is your clients who determined whether your business strategy is working or not. You must respond to their requirements accordingly, even if it is not necessarily classed as best practice.  

Best practice is key to the success of any business. It is a proven way that allows you to grow your company learning from the success and failure of others. But it is important to assess whether it is working for you.

It requires more than just mere execution. You must analyse your strategies and adapt them to your business model. It requires constant evaluation to stay up to date with the latest trends in the market.

So while I would argue that best practice is fundamental to any successful business, don’t be afraid to get creative. Respect where strategies have come from but dare to be different.

 

It might just be the thing that transforms your business into a thriving enterprise.

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