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Stepping Outside Your Marketing Comfort Zone

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Rick Doran, now retired, spoke on this topic previously and we are sharing it again because his experience encourages us and our retailers to be comfortable with stepping outside a marketing comfort zone.

Ever look back and remember the “good old days?” They say you always look back at the past with rose colored glasses, but there certainly have been times when I’ve looked at the past and remembered some of the not so rosy memories. Let’s not pretend some of the things you’ve done in the past weren’t absolutely unforgivable— dare I remind you of those bell-bottoms you once bought?

Our First Pitch

I remember the first time I had a company pitch their marketing services to me. I’m sure you all remember the Yellow Pages—that big business directory that was meant to be the best way to market your business out to new clients. I still remember how in the early days of my business, Yellow Pages reps would come to meet with me in order to pitch their giant brick of a book, trying to convince me that advertising with them was the way to go.

I remember sitting at my desk watching this rep pitch me in a half cheerful, half desperate manner on how I could increase my business revenue by just advertising with Yellow Pages. In fact, this was the first time I was introduced to something called an “ROI Calculator” or “Return on Investment” calculator.

They would essentially ask me questions like “How many sales do you close per month?” “How much do your customers pay?” After punching in some numbers, he looked me in the eyes and said “How would you like to make $10,000 more every month? That can happen with Yellow Pages you know!”

This was the late 1990’s, so there was still some lingering faith and trust that had to be placed in things like the Yellow Pages. Relying on the Yellow Pages for local marketing was the thing everyone still did. It was comfortable and at times, pretty reliable. But it’s 2018 now and the Yellow Pages are nowhere to be found.  We’ve had pioneers disrupt the market and start shifts towards new and exciting ways to market their businesses.

What if Google Did not Exist?

Imagine if Google and Search Engine Optimization wasn’t a thing. Imagine if the dreamers never put the dream into reality, if we were all still using the Yellow Pages to get our brand out there. We’ve adapted to new technologies and new things. At least that’s what I had to do. When moving from one focused media in the 1990s and 2000’s to focusing on multiple medias today, not only did I have full control of my business but I was now in charge of my own destiny. It felt good to adapt.

I could have easily stayed in my marketing comfort zone and refused to adapt or evolve my business, but I chose the hard way. The way in which I would need to learn and unlearn in order to succeed in this world. Without adaptation, the world continues to speed on ahead until you’re eventually left behind.

That’s what we at R&A take pride in doing. We take pride in helping furniture retailers adapt, and in helping retailers of all sizes realize the true potential of their business.

In today’s age, R&A and our clients refuse to take the comfortable way out. We create, we innovate and we adapt. I invite you to realize the same is possible for you. Adaptation is key but don’t think you have to go through it alone. We will always be here to guide you through it.

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