I Think We All Need to Go on a Diet

No, I’m not saying we should start counting carbs, start eating 15 grapefruit a day or cut out caffeine (that wouldn’t go over well here).

I’m saying we should go on a marketing diet. Cut out the empty calories and get back to health food that does a body good. Get back to marketing that’s smarter, leaner and can carry a business further without fatigue.

I think there’s a tendency among businesses – and even seasoned marketing folks – to take an “anything that’s cheap” approach to marketing when the economy is tough and budgets aren’t what they were in the past. There’s a fear of doing anything too large or too bold, so doing a lot of small stuff seems safer.

So we go in without a plan.

We say “well, I’ve got to do something” and then execute without a real thought of the sum total of the little things we’re trying to pull off.

The problem is that in the mish-mash of direct mail, tweets, newsletters, e-blasts, take-ones and two-column ads, the brand message gets skewed. It gets out of focus. It gets sluggish. Fillers and empty calories replace its healthy routine.

At a time when we should absolutely be smarter about how money is spent, we end up being more wasteful than when the budget included room for risk. When pressures dictate a leaner marketing plan, the focus needs to be on marketing with some nutritional value (as it should always be).

It’s time to be strategic, meaningful and precise. It’s time to go on a diet.

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