The pace of change on the internet is amazing. The web changes every day, and is itself an agent for change. Get comfortable with the notion that everything online is transient. This does not mean that you should give up or be sloppy – it means that your online marketing strategies should incorporate this fact and act accordingly.
We Do Not Know the Future
Not that long ago, the concept that every business must have an online presence was new. A few years later, and social media is the “must-have”. Now – it’s mobile. I do not know what will be “the next big thing”, and neither do you.
Start Lean, Then Build
Many modern entrepreneurs embrace the “lean start-up” methodology. For the sake of brevity we can summarise: get the smallest, leanest version of your product or service to market quickly and inexpensively. Apply this concept to your online initiatives. Get lightweight versions of your site, app, advertisements, etc. out the door quickly, gather feedback, and then improve.
Make Small Mistakes & Move On
Also in the “lean start-up” methodology is the notion of “failing quickly”. Too many businesses burn too many resources trying to build the perfect solution, but if it fails – there is nothing left in reserve. It is better to try something small and simple, see if it works, and if it fails – learn from the mistakes and move on. Think of an online advertising campaign for your club. It is very difficult to know what copy will work and what will not. Instead of crafting the perfect ad, get a few online quickly, see which works the best, drop the rest and continue.
Create Loose Connections
In the past, your connections could be stored neatly for future reference –in a Rolodex, a spreadsheet, or a CRM. But with the advent of social networking, and especially sites like LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, it’s impossible to properly track everyone that intersects with your business.
Don’t worry about it! Make tons of connections. You won’t have time to properly store every one of them, and some you may never need. Don’t let that stop you from expanding your network. Start to think of yourself as potentially being connected to everyone on the internet.
As your connection pool grows, so will your volume of inbound messages. It’s impossible to properly process every message that you receive. Remember that e-mail was created as a very lightweight communications tool between individuals, and was never intended to track conversations and projects. It was never intended to archive critical information, ideas and documents.
In my next blog post (will add a link here) I will provide alternative tools you should consider to take some pressure off your e-mail system. But in the meantime ask yourself - "am I using e-mail for simple communications, or am I using it for tasks like project management, document storage, CRM and more"? The answer is probably yes.
Website as Hub
Previously I’ve written about how your website should be the hub of all online activity. That sentiment applies well here. As long as you keep your business website well oiled, it will not matter if Facebook collapses and another start-up explodes. Your website is the one piece of your network that you can control.
What Is Important?
I’m not suggesting that you rush sloppy work out the door. Your brand is critical, and is never to be degraded. But accept that the web is constantly in flux, so make sure your website is always tight, and for everything else keep your efforts fast, light and intense, and understand that it’s better to have lot’s of tiny failures than any one big one.