Success Takes Time: A More Patient Approach to Digital Marketing

They say that good things come to those who wait. This can be a difficult concept to adhere to, particularly in an industry where information moves rapidly and consumers seem to shift their opinions seemingly instantaneously. But the fact remains that success in marketing does take time. As much as it may seem that time is short and a window of opportunity is fleeting, the reality is that any strategy must be given time to actually take hold and work before pivoting away from it.

What do we mean when we say that a strategy must be given time to work? Consider this example: a brand has contracted with a podcast to do some advertising. The niche of the podcast seems to be a great fit, and with all the attention podcasts are receiving right now it seems to be the right time to get involved in this medium.

A three-month contract is signed (more on the length of this contract later), and assets are delivered and ready to begin performing. When the first month’s results come in, the marketing team is happy to see that users are redeeming the promotional code given out on the podcast and that traffic to all their channels is up. Success!

As the last two months of the contract wind down, the traffic comes down from that early spike in interest as repeat listeners of the podcast are no longer hearing about a new brand for the first time on each episode. This is a perfectly normal “evening out” in numbers that many brands often see after a big push. Does this spell disaster? Absolutely not!

The key to success here is two-fold. First, the marketing team should be coming up with fresh assets that the podcast can deliver in the following months after that first big push. Second, the objective should always be to both entice new customers as well as turn first-time customers into repeat customers.

Can all of the aforementioned objectives be accomplished in a three-month span? Most likely not. This initial three-month period is perhaps more important because it generates a buzz and gets users excited about the product — but what happens after those three months? If the advertiser suddenly disappears from the podcast, the likelihood that listeners will forget that product exists increases.

While there is no singular answer to the “sweet spot” of time spent on a specific campaign, marketers must still be in it for the long game. It can be easy to make a splash and build a buzz, but maintaining that buzz and excitement level presents a new set of challenges. This is where a marketer’s skillset is called into action, challenging them to come up with enough creative assets to keep that initial momentum from fading off.

Patience is the key to any marketing strategy. After all, no one wants to just be a flash in the pan success. Giving a campaign enough time to do its job, rather than pulling the plug after a few short months, is more often than not worth the additional investment. Of course, an extended period of time requires a refresh in creative assets periodically to prevent content from going stale, so it’s important to not just let a campaign “sail” without checking in periodically.

Taking the time to see a campaign through to the end can go a long way for building up customer loyalty and achieving that coveted genuine connection with loyal customers.

Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5WPR and one of the most well-respected Public Relations professionals in the United States. Ronn is the author of "For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results with Game-Changing Public Relations."

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