Articles

Random Acts of Marketing

Around Three Cats Marketing, we use the phrase “random acts of marketing” to describe how too many businesses try to market their products and services. But what does “random acts of marketing” actually mean?

To be fair, “random acts of marketing” isn’t actually a phrase that’s used a lot in the marketing world. It actually first came to me from my good friend and fellow StoryBrand Certified Marketing Guide, Thom Van Dyke. With his permission,Three Cats Marketing has adopted it as one of our own phrases.

But what are random acts of marketing? Well, there are three ways the phrase could be interpreted.

First, it might mean marketing activities that someone does without a clear plan or strategy. It suggests that a company is engaging in sporadic marketing efforts without a cohesive and well developed marketing plan. In short, it’s the approach that says “let’s throw stuff at the wall and see what sticks.”

This is probably the most common way small businesses market their products and services. The problem with this approach is that it’s incredibly inefficient, it’s not very effective at achieving long term goals, and it’s difficult – if not impossible – to measure the success of your marketing.

Second, "random acts of marketing" could also describe isolated marketing plans and initiatives that aren’t part of a larger, integrated marketing strategy. It’s like having all the parts to build a car just lying around your garage, and expecting them to get you somewhere.

These kinds of “random acts of marketing” fail because there’s no consistency in your marketing, and there’s almost never any alignment with the overall brand message and goals. Imagine a football coach who goes into a game without a game plan and instead just calls whatever plays sound good at the time. Worse, he calls different plays for each player on the field. No one knows who’s supposed to do what and there’s no way to build a sustained drive towards a touchdown. Obviously, that team isn’t going to lose most of their games.

Finally, there’s a third, somewhat more positive way to use the phrase, referring to unconventional, creative, or unexpected marketing tactics that don’t follow the usual rules. Doing things this way can capture the attention of your audience and stand out from the crowd, but they’re also risky and have the potential to backfire. One recent example comes to mind: the Bud Light fiasco. Regardless of your feelings about gender identity issues, it’s undeniable that Anheuser-Busch took a huge risk – and ended up alienating it’s primary customers. To date, Bud Light has cost the company several billions of dollars – and those customers are saying they’re not coming back.

At Three Cats Marketing, we believe the best approach to marketing is to have a clear, well-defined strategy that aligns with your business goals. Once you have a well-established brand, it might be time to think about going against convention – but do it with your eyes wide open, always remembering that, as Bud Light proved, there is indeed such a thing as bad advertising and marketing.

We think the best way to start is by having a clear, compelling brand message and staying close to it throughout all of your marketing collateral. That includes your website, social media marketing, and blog posts. In or next post, we'll introduce a framework that will help you clarify your message and talk about your business so people listen.

This Month's Free Resource

Is your business committing "random acts of marketing"? If you're not sure, there's a simple way to find out. Just take our free Marketing Assessment. It takes just 10 minutes to complete, and gives you a detailed report on your marketing and a free action plan that will generate more revenue for your business.

Authors

Paul Srch

Paul Srch

Paul Srch is the founder and chief marketing guide at Three Cats Marketing. After seeing so many businesses commit "random acts of marketing" by not having a solid strategy and clear message, he decided to do something about it. Passionate about seeing startups, solopreneurs, and small businesses succeed, Paul became certified in the StoryBrand 7-Part Messaging Framework which helps businesses talk about what they do in a way that's clear, compelling, and leads to increased revenue.

Show comment form
Trackback URL

Three Cats Logo

Too many businesses commit random acts of marketing - make sure your message is clear and your marketing stands out so your business gets heard through the noise!