Marketing ninja warrior? What the heck is that? Many of you have seen the TV show American Ninja Warrior, but if you haven't, here's a brief description: ANW is a game show in which contestants must tackle and succeed in beating very challenging obstacle courses. Now, I know what you're thinking – "How does this have anything to do with marketing my business?"
Expand your thought process and think of putting yourself/your business to the actual test – but rather than facing physical obstacles, you're breaking through any complications you have running your business.
As with any great athlete, you have to train – to educate yourself. Ask some questions. What are others saying about your company? Stretch your ear muscles and listen to the buzz roaring on social media. What are your customers saying about your business? What are your competitors saying about themselves? What are some of the more useful tactics they’re employing that you might do well to use also? When you feel confident enough to begin practicing what you've learned, you've stepped up to the starting line (much like the ninjas do).
The first obstacle you will encounter are your stepping stones. You must jump from step to step without skipping any or falling off in the process. (I would like to point out that each phase could be compared to a move in the classic marketing funnel technique as well.)
- The first step represents attracting your potential customer. You need to create some blogs around topics that you heard your customers talking about and post them to social media.
- The next step is converting a visitor to lead. You can do this by adding a call-to-action to a blog that will take you to a landing page.
- The following step is the closing aspect. Here you will close a lead into a client.
Now that you've sealed the deal, you're finished, right? WRONG. Even after you've traversed the steps, there's one more part to the stepping stones obstacle:
- The rope of delight. This will carry you through to more clients and hold on to your already existing clients. This step can make or break your process, so make sure you send those thank you emails and collect testimonials.
As your business changes, you may experience more traffic, whether it is on your website or other social media. You may have even acquired new clients at a faster rate than you expected – BUT HANG ON!!
The Log Roll
The next obstacle is the log roll. Its job is to spin you out of control – kind of how a lot of new traffic might throw you off your game. HOLD ON!!! On the log, you must hold on for dear life, but there are handles you can grab. These are the ninja's lifelines, and yours, and should be presented as segmented processes.
- One handle represents time management. You can obtain this skill by reading books or blogs on the subject.
- The other handle is highly essential: planning. This is where you should organize your processes and get all of your staff on the same page. Setting up planning periods is incredibly productive. You will no longer have to spend time keeping them up to date, as they will have received this information at the meeting.
Have you held on? Good.
The Spider Jump
The next task is the spider jump. This obstacle forces you to jolt yourself up and catch yourself between two walls.
- The first wall represents tactics you may have used in the past. These may consist of outbound tactics such as snail mail or TV ads.
- The other wall is the newer inbound tactics such as blogging and other forms of content like webinars and eBooks.
Using a wide range of techniques is critical to surmounting obstacles, depending on the target demographic. Normally a wall would be perceived as a hindrance, but in this case, you're using two opposite walls to elevate yourself and ultimately conquer the obstacle.
The Warped Wall
Once you have spider-monkeyed your way out from between the two walls, you must complete the final obstacle – the iconic warped wall, a 14.5 feet, curved wall that you must run up and pull yourself over to succeed. At 14.5 feet high, you may cower at the bottom, looking up at all the beautiful things you want from your business.
DON'T become discouraged. This wall represents all of the parts of your business you dread. The only way to climb this wall and get to the top where success lies is to find the motivation to run past the fear of failure and grab your goal. Use all of your strength to pull yourself up and hit that buzzer of success!
If you climbed that wall and hit the buzzer, congrats, you are a MARKETING NINJA WARRIOR!!!
Here are links to the obstacles in action.