They say life imitates art, and right now you could say politics imitates business.
We all know that to be successful in business you need to do three things really well. Constantly get new clients through getting your message out (marketing), turning prospects into customers (sales), delivering the goods and keeping your customers coming back for more (loyalty).
So what’s the difference between that and being in Government?
Any Government (in a democracy) needs to constantly spruik their message (marketing) to get new voters on board (the customer), deliver the goods (do stuff that advances the country and the population) and keep voters loyal (customers coming back and re-electing them).
Looking back over the last 3 years I believe the Labour Government under Julia Gillard has spectacularly failed at one and three.
While most pundits would agree the Government has been able to put through huge amounts of legislation that will help the nation, they’ve been terrible at marketing these achievements and keeping their base loyal.
Julia Gillard is by all accounts a great negotiator and one tough lady. But she just couldn’t cut through with her message.
In short Labour’s marketing sucked and they couldn’t sell their message for quids. Their market (us voters) simply weren’t listening, didn’t care and in many cases gone from love to hate.
And if you think this never happens in business – just think New Coke. Remember the massive worldwide backlash when Coke ditched its tried and true formula? They had to backtrack in a hurry.
So the Labour was looking like it would be wiped out at the next election.
Let’s move to Tony Abbott for a second.
Every successful salesperson knows you should never, ever denigrate the competition. Prospects don’t feel comfortable when you do and it will always come back to bite you.
A lesson Tony Abbott would have been smart to heed.
Having played the politics of putting down the other side for so long, he’s got a reputation of just being negative.
And to a large extent it worked – while the other side wasn’t selling their message well.
Voters were switching to the Liberals in droves. A classic case of we hate the other organisation so much we’ll do anything to not use them in the future.
For quite a while Abbott basked in the glory of being the front runner – market leader if you will. There was no opposition, and his ascendancy was by all accounts a foregone conclusion.
So what do many large organisations do when things look dire?
Boards step in and change the person at the top.
The hope is the new CEO will bring new energy, fresh ideas, possibly change the culture and get their message out more effectively.
Which is exactly how it’s playing out in the Labour Party.
As recent events show, it’s frightening how fast things can change. Your competition can do something unthinkable (or so they’d have you believe) and claw back your lead and maybe even overtake you.
Kevin Rudd has brought new energy back into the fray. Labour has gone from a position of possible annihilation to an even chance of winning – all in a few weeks.
For whatever reason, Kevin Rudd is able to cut through with his message and people are listening again.
He’s marketing himself as the “new Kevin” and selling his Government’s message in a way that is resonating with many voters.
Dear Tony is looking decidedly shattered, wondering what’s hit him. Frankly, he’s been hoisted by his own petard.
Abbott made a classic mistake with marketing.
Rather than concentrating on why the opposition’s product was deficient, and constantly being negative, he should have concentrated on what his organisation could have done for us the voters.
We all want to know what’s in it for us. How our lives will change for the better. While pain gets people moving, without balancing it with positives, people will not choose you.
As they say a day’s a long time in politics. And it’s the same in business. Underestimate your competition at your peril.
Now back to your business.
It’s a given that you do a great job with delivery. But unless you can consistently get your positive message out and sell your services, but will not ever reach your full potential.
Which is where we can help.
Our proven marketing and sales strategies have helped many organisations like yours become leaders of the pack. Many are world-wide successes, others have left their competition in the dust.
We have different levels of engagement that will suit small one to two person operations, all the way to working with multi-nationals helping with specific marketing and sales programs.
Call us on (02) 9499-7958 for more information.
Remember, your competition wants to eat you for lunch. Don’t get blindsided thinking everything’s fine. It’s not.
Talk to us about our 2 Heads Program – where we give you sharp, actionable advice which will keep you moving upwards.
Rashid & Barbara