Have you heard any variation of the idea that no strategy survives the first contact of the enemy? That’s usually attributed to a military strategist named Helmuth Von Moltke, but he said it as a practical observation that any seasoned warrior would have made. Now, marketing isn’t warfare, but there is a real similarity in the idea that strategy has to be flexible.
In warfare, a video game, parenting, or any other endeavor that involves more than one person, the dynamics change as soon as contact is made. You’ve got ideas, they’ve got ideas. You’ve got agendas, they’ve got agendas. Adding a new personality changes what happens, no matter what you had planned. Parents are very familiar with this idea because kids tend to change your plans all the time no matter what your strategy is.
The more people there are, the more flexible a strategy needs to be in order to get everyone on your side.
Strategy Must Be Secondary
If your strategy is your priority, then it’s possible to sacrifice the goal to keep the strategy. In marketing, this happens when a PPC campaign is cherished despite results, or when a slogan is kept even when nobody but the boss likes it. Your goal has to be the first thing on the priority list, and strategies are the means to achieve the goal. Here are some ideas, but the list is by no means complete:
Goals To Maintain
- customer satisfaction
- business growth
- online health of website
Strategies To Flex As Needed to Meet Goals
- ad campaigns
- marketing tactics
- SEO methods
- mobile marketing
Your strategies are the means you use — the tactics — to achieve your goals. If the strategy becomes the goal instead, you will be the only person happy with the results and your happiness won’t last long. The ability to change your tactics and strategies to adapt to changing conditions is one of the best ways to make sure everybody wins.