No More Cheap Flings! Shameful Confessions of a Strategic Marketer

by Debra Andrews | May 24, 2018

Thinking about engaging in a short-term marketing relationship? We suggest thinking twice. Or better yet, listen in on business leader support groups to hear first-hand tear-jerkers about buying into the promise of “leads at first sight.”

Can a cheap marketing fling turn into a rewarding and fruitful long-term relationship? Sure.

Is it likely? Unfortunately, no.

Typically, one-off marketing (or sales) campaigns carry high expectations that often lead to wasted time and dollars and very disappointed buyers.

Okay, I’ll admit it. I’ve caved in on a few occasions. Marketri has been propositioned to assist with “short-term” marketing initiatives. Those occasions started with two clear signs:

  1. The buyer wasn’t interested in investing in marketing long-term, or
  2. The buyer didn’t have have the capital required to do it right.

The pick-up line sounded something like this: “Let’s do a short-term program and generate one or two pieces of business. Then, I’ll have the funds to do it right.”

I knew it felt wrong, but I said yes (on multiple occasions). Why did I do it? I guess I felt pressured and carried a glimmer of hope that it would be the type of engagement marketers dream of – low-cost, lots of time-saving shortcuts, and a big ROI.

As a trained strategic marketer, I’m ashamed of those choices.

Of course they never worked out! My new clients weren’t happy to lower their unrealistic expectations of short-term returns. And I felt remorse because, in my heart, I knew short-term marketing, or what I call “cheap marketing flings,” don’t pan out. My MBA and years and years of strategic marketing experience taught me better. And worse, in wanting to show a client the light, I’d put my business in a spot where it couldn’t deliver on our broader promise.

Marketing that fuels growth is a long-term journey.

It requires courtship. Marketri needs to get to know the client – their brand and positioning, goals and objectives, internal resources, and marketing assets.

It demands thoughtful planning.We develop strategic marketing plans that are custom fit for our clients’ needs. Every client is unique and extraordinary. Only when we understand and tap that special something, can great things happen.

And, it cries for consistency. There is no substitute for meaningful communications. Our clients’ audiences must know we are listening to their needs.

It’s time to move on.

After a few therapeutic talks, my Marketri team members and I have decided never to accept short-term marketing flings again. We know what we can achieve for clients who believe in and value marketing as an ongoing, strategic discipline.

Thankfully, we all have grown from those, “I shouldn’t have done that,” moments and become stronger, better, and more committed to those who share our belief in the sanctity of long-term marketing.

If you’re interested in following us along the way, I invite you to subscribe to our blog. If not, that’s fine too. Thanks for reading, and I wish you the best of luck on your marketing journey!

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Image Credit: Yellow Bow-Broken Heart by Linda TannerCC BY 2.0

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