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Are You Challenging the Status Quo?

Mary Pink's picture

Harvey McKay, Author of Swim With The Sharks recently posted this on Twitter: @HarveyMackay- Never be afraid to try something new, even if the old way isn't broken. The results might be better than you expected. #leadership
Do you keep doing the same thing expecting the same results? Do you ask yourself: If things are working in your marketing campaigns, why would you do something different? What you should be asking is: what can you do differently even when things are going well?

You need to challenge the status quo and how you can make things even better. As an example, at Iowa State we have had a very successful kid’s club, Jr. Cyclone Club that has over 5,500 members. Mailing out their packets had gone well but we decided to try a new way to get our fans to pick up their packet and reward them. We offered our members a Cyclone themed titanium necklace if they picked up their packet instead of mailing it out. The success of the promotion was incredible, as we not only saved on mailing costs, but we provided our club members with an added value item. We didn’t have any idea if the promotion would work but we felt the risk was worth it.

You need to have a strategy as to why you are making changes and what your end goal is. If you don’t know why you are making the change, then don’t do it just to do it. Trying something new is about looking at how to improve on your current results. Another example of this was changing our football video board open. Fans liked our video board opens but we decided that we wanted to make a change to the ending and we created a Cyclone weather alert with a siren sound to improve on it. Our fans loved it and now the siren sound has been incorporated across our other sports.
We don’t always want to do something the same way twice. It may have worked but there also may be better ways to do things. If you don’t challenge yourself to look at it another way, how do you ever improve upon what you are doing right? It could be even more successful than you ever dreamed of.

The last example is a t-shirt promotion we had executed for men’s basketball. In the past, we had thrown out t-shirts whenever one of our players hit a three-point shot. While fans liked the promotion, we wanted to take it one step further and make the shirts special. We took each shirt and had a number put on it starting with number one, all the way to number 300 and put the phrase “I am number __" on the shirt with the corresponding number. For each three pointer now, we threw out the shirt during the game for that three pointer. Then, we took it a step further by adding a social media component for our road games and post season where fans could participate on Facebook during the game by listing under our posting, the name of the player who made the three pointer, and which number it was. From there, we drew winners from the posts. This added element had the highest engagement rate on our Facebook page of any post during the year. Fans really enjoyed the uniqueness of the promotion as well as the opportunity to engage with our brand during away games.

What have you tried today? Think about one thing you could change that is working. If you keep challenging yourself to look at things in a different way, you’ll not only continue to improve your product but you will also improve yourself.

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