Is the Red Queen moving against you?

How can content marketing help you defeat the Red Queen?

‘Of course it is’ said the Queen…now here you see, it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place. If you want to get somewhere else you must run at least twice as fast as that!'” — Lewis Carroll, Through The Looking Glass and What Alice Found There, 1871

It is human nature to ‘play what is in front of you,’ which is perfecting and selling your current offering – whether that is accounting services, franchises, logistics or information… But, while it’s a strategy that may work on the rugby paddock, it’s fatal practise in today’s rapidly changing environment.

Red Queen marketing refers to the practise of innovating new products and services just to keep pace with your competitors who are doing the same thing.

The race is not won until the organisation innovates itself – rather than products or services — into one that is adaptable, flexible and emergent.

Red Queen marketing is like “winning the battle before it is even fought”.*

For example, we may be concentrating on selling excellent franchises, accounting services, IT support or software – great products, great services, great systems, great prices… but your competitors are doing the same.

Not only that, changes in technology, human behaviour and the economic environment mean you have to run faster.

For example, it’s possible that the future franchise model will be completely cloud based, requiring only a low monthly fee; or accounting compliance work completely automated online. Already, small fee based services are gathering, processing and distributing information – often for free…

The fact that anybody or any machine can do a passably good job on their own – regardless of the skill – means that the Red Queen is on the move and she’s travelling faster and faster every single day.

Quality is losing ground to the sheer volume of automation.

Companies that continue to ‘play what’s in front of them’, may survive 2015, and will probably be gone by 2021…

What will business success in 2015 require? In the words of Sun Tzu (The Art of War) “Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win”.

Three marketing strategies for winning before going to war may be:

1. Instead of trying to take more market share, grow the market;

2. Use thought leadership and content marketing to build your profile and credibility – customers are more likely to buy from people they know, like and trust

3. Monitor the current environment your customers are living in – political, economic, social, technological, legal and environmental trends. Where are they going and how will this impact your customers? How can you help?

Essentially, winning the war before it is fought requires changing the rules of how the game is played.

What will be your game breaker in 2016?

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