Fishing in a Stocked Pond
Updated: May 25
Perhaps you caught the news this week about the record-setting blue marlin landed by Brian Stover of Paulding County, Georgia during the Orange Beach Billfish Classic. Measuring 10.5 feet long and weighing 776.4 pounds, the fish’s weight broke the tournament’s previous record. Stover was fishing aboard the “Mollie” captained by Jeff Shoults, a thirty-year fishing veteran. When he hooked the fish, they were about 240-250 miles southwest of Orange Beach and 150 miles off the coast of Louisiana. He said he battled the beast for about 4 1/2 hours before finally landing it in the boat. If you think about marketing like fishing, landing new clients shouldn’t be that difficult.
Let’s face it, most of us don’t have unlimited budgets for marketing. As we’ve discussed before, most of us aren’t spending enough time or money on our marketing efforts. It helps to have some guidelines as we prioritize our marketing dollars. In addition to the “does this help put me in the right place at the right time” test, a priority to our efforts should be targeted toward those that know us. If you want to put fish in the freezer, it’s easier, cheaper, and more consistent to do from a stocked pond than deep sea fishing.
Remember that your marketing efforts should communicate who you are and what you do – this is why you are referred and why you are hired.
Your branding helps communicate who you are. For those who know you, you’ve already got a leg up. Think of your circles of friends and acquaintances, both personal and professional. Think about all the groups to which you belong. You may not know all the other members, but the fact that you share membership is that leg up. These are your stocked ponds.
When you look at a stocked pond (at any time other than feeding time), it looks pretty calm and innocent. You probably can’t tell that it is stocked. It’s just a calm body of water. So identifying your stocked ponds is not enough. You’ve got to figure out how you are going to get the fish out of the pond and into your freezer. If you don’t have the right tools, you aren’t going to be very successful.
The tools most effective and efficient at delivering clients from your “stocked ponds” are those which are targeted to them.
Billboards, for example, are overkill. Email campaigns focused on your “ponds” are reminders about who you are and what you do. For example, email campaigns focused on your different “ponds” reminding them of who you are and how they know you, and most importantly, what all you do and can do. Face-to-face meetings are good investments when you are likely to yield a positive return, such as a large client or good referral source. For larger ponds, targeted digital advertising might be another good spend, such as ads in trade journals.