I hate to break it to you, but what worked a year ago in your marketing strategy won’t work today.
If you’re feeling frustrated that you’re not seeing the same results from the same strategies that were crushing it last year, I want you to know you’re not alone.
The reality is that the digital marketing world moves at lightning speed, and what worked a year ago will not cut it today.
There’s this marketing myth that once you find success you’ve made it and your progress will never go backwards.
But that’s FAR from the truth.
If you’re not continuously adapting to the changing digital marketing landscape, you will not maintain your momentum.
In today’s episode of the Not For Lazy Marketers Podcast, I’m going on a bit of rant to call out the CEO’s who aren’t willing to step up and adapt, and hitting on:
- Why putting the blame on your team isn’t the solution
- When it might be time to revisit your offer
- How to fill in the gaps in your foundation
You can’t keep relying on last year’s strategy to boost this year’s profits.
Shoot me a DM on Instagram (@emilyhirsh) if today’s episode leaves you feeling called out and compelled to take action!
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READ THE EPISODE TRANSCRIPT
Hello everybody. Welcome back to the podcast. I hope you guys are doing fabulous. I cannot believe we’re going into August. My kids are starting school in a month. I’m excited to have them in a real school. Of course, I don’t do most things traditionally, so it’s not a traditional public school. There’s no homework. It’s called Acton Academy actually, and my daughter’s going to a nature preschool and my son is going to Acton Academy. If you’re not familiar with it, I would look it up. It had their schools all over the U.S. I read the founder’s book and I’m super excited to try it out.
It is very much an entrepreneur school, and not that I would ever push entrepreneurship on my kids, but what I love about it is that it allows kids to do more of what they love to do, projects they’re doing like electricity building of cities. They encourage reading any book you like to read. They just want you to love to read. When I read about the school, I was like, man, I wonder where I would be today if I went to that school and not public school. I’m excited for my son to try it and be full-time in school. He’s been a little bit bored.
Right now we are going to be transitioning from California to Colorado for a month. I am extremely excited to hike every single day. I love hiking. I love being in nature. I plan on doing lots of solo long hikes in Colorado, so super grateful for the summer. In the meantime, our house has been redone and I can’t believe it’s all happening right now and that we’re this far into the year because we’ve been planning it since February of this year.
Anyway, I have a little bit of a rant today, but it’s not just a rant. It’s really to make you guys understand if you’re feeling this way, you’re also not alone. One thing that I’ve heard a lot of people say, whether it’s been in Facebook groups, whether it’s been clients we’ve had to have conversations with about this, or Ignite students, and just kind of give them the reality of where the industry is today, is saying something along the lines of, “but my webinar worked last year,” or, “but this launch strategy worked last year,” or, “but my offer sold really well last year,” or “my content was doing really well. My engagement was really doing well last year. My business was growing last year and now it’s not.”
I think there’s this, maybe it’s a dream, maybe it’s an expectation, that once you find success and you know what, I honestly had this at some point in my business and sometimes still do, because wouldn’t that be so nice, which is once you find success, you have made it and things won’t go backwards, or get hard, or stop working, or stop converting, or stop selling, or you’ll have a bad month. I genuinely thought when I first started my business that if I made it to a million dollars, like that was like $83,000 a month, if I made it there that I will never go backwards. But that’s just not the case. And I’ve talked about it before. Not that you would go back to below under a million, it’s not that your expenses go up and your revenue will continue to rise, but it’s not like from then on out, it’s just going to get more every month. You’re going to have lower months, or things are going to shift and change.
That’s not the point, but saying that XYZ worked even six months ago or a year ago, and it’s not working today, and then trying to say, well, then it must be my copywriter, my team, my coaches, my ads manager, whoever it is, it must be them because it worked a year ago. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could as CEOs find the problem that easily? If we just replace that person, it will solve this? I’m going to be honest with you, one of the red flags for us when we bring in new clients is somebody who’s like, oh, I’ve worked with six agencies in the last year because usually… and I might get in trouble for saying this from my team because I mean, there are a lot of crappy agencies out there, unfortunately. I feel very passionately about making sure that when you interview an agency or you talk to an agency they really know numbers, they have an incredible delivery and process system, because service businesses are no joke.
There are a lot of bad agencies out there and that does happen, but usually people who jump from agency to agency or business coach to business coach, or they’re hiring and firing team members, and they have that high churn, honestly they are the problem and not the people that they’re hiring. It’s usually because they want the ads manager, coach, team member to be the solution to a problem and that’s never the case because if the foundation has broken, or is broken, or maybe it was working and now it’s broken, if that is the case, nothing will fix that unless you go back to the foundation.
So if you have that happening to you where you’re like, my offer was selling last year, or like my webinar strategy was crushing it, people were watching my automated webinar now they’re not, or my engagement was incredible, my podcast downloads were up and now they’re all down and I don’t know the problem, and you’re trying to find who to blame or the one thing to blame, most likely the issue is the industry has changed. Your audience has changed their needs, their wants, their desires have shifted, and this can even happen with your customers.
I want to talk about the offer piece because I think that’s pretty important, and that is if you had an offer that sold successfully a year ago or six months ago, and now it’s stopped selling, you need to really go deep and look at what does your audience need today, right now? How can you shift that offer? I think people make the mistake of never updating or improving their offer, and this is a service, a course, a membership, a product, anything like that. You need to make those updates because things become relevant. So for example, in the last four, five months with the iOS updates, with all the shifts on Facebook, with the changes in the industry, with the saturation happening, we added components to our services. We added the fact that we now include landing page edits and updates, and more improved and increased in deeper level of funnel strategy in combination with our Facebook ads, we added messaging and workshops and messaging support for our students and our clients. So we changed, shifted, and in my opinion, improved our offer because what our clients and students needed changed because the industry changed.
If you have an offer that sold a certain amount of time ago and now it’s not selling, you can’t blame even the marketing strategy, or the Facebook ads, or the team member. You need to look at the offer itself. You need to get reconnected with what your audience needs right now. Today that doesn’t mean you need a whole new business or a whole new offer. That means you might need to change your offer a little bit. You might need to take something out, add a different feature, add some level of support, shift the way you’re positioning. It could be the case. Things become irrelevant. That is true in every single industry out there, and if you think you’re the exception to that, you are not.
If you look at my marketing strategy worked a year ago, my organic marketing was producing more results, my messaging, my content. If any of those things worked at one point and are not working right now, it is not an individual person’s problem. It is not one thing that you can put on the list and be like, well, if we solve that, we’ll solve all our problems. It’s a foundational problem. It’s most likely that the industry has changed and you have fallen behind, and unfortunately that happens a lot faster. That can happen in three months. Now I can tell you for a fact, because I’ve seen behind the scenes, very successful people and business owners that you look up to, influencers that you look up to, even if they have an automated funnel or an automated or program that runs on its own, 150% guarantee you they are putting a massive amount of energy, resources, and money in the backend of constantly updating that with new webinars, new courses, new modules, new content in the courses. The thing is they have a huge team to support with doing that. If you’re on your own, it’s hard. And you have to get ahead of that, but you’ve got to prioritize where that importance is.
If you see anybody and it’s like, oh, well, they’ve been running the same webinar funnel for three years and it works for them, that doesn’t exist. Show me it because it doesn’t exist. Go look at Russell Brunson. How many new challenges funnels offers has he put out there in the last two years? A ton. I’m not advocating that you don’t stay focused, I’m just saying you have to stay up to date on the trends. That doesn’t mean a whole new funnel, or a whole new offer, or a new business. It means mostly the positioning or that you’re really saying, “hey, what does my audience need right now? Am I giving them that? Am I connected with that? Am I in alignment with that with them? Or have I lost that and has another company come in and swooped them up?” I think that happens a lot.
So how do you address this? Well, we come back to the process of marketing. You come back to having the entire customer journey looked at from the ad to the landing page, to the webinar or the experience, to the offer and figuring out where people are dropping off. If you have a situation where your ads are still doing well, you have people still signing up for your webinar and you have people still going to your webinar and they are not buying, it is your offer. It’s your offer or the positioning of your offer, and you need to adapt and make sure that you can get connected with what your audience needs. Maybe that means you need to go do 20 interviews of your customers. Maybe that means you need to spend an hour a day looking in Facebook groups at the conversations that your ideal customer is having, whatever it is. You could have had a disconnect and you’ve become disconnected.
As you grow your business, this is going to happen, so you need to have process and ability to make sure this doesn’t happen, to prevent this from happening, because it will happen and you’ll become disconnected. You’ll become in the day to day, you’re in the grind, you’re focused on your business growth. Then you’re losing sight of the shifts and changes in the industry. The way you combat this is if you have something that’s like, “Hey, it worked at one time and now it’s not working well,” number one, you need to find the holes just like with something that’s never worked before we need to find the holes. Is it the ads? Is that the offer from the ads? Is it the landing pages? Is it the strategy? The way you find that is you figure out where people are dropping off.
Here’s the reality that I am calling out. If you’re a CEO, if you are the leader of your company, I also want to say you should be stepping up into that leadership and taking accountability for that and not trying. I know it’s easy to do. I have done it subconsciously. I know it’s easy to be like if I just find that team member, if I just get that new agency, if I just hire that new coach, if I just buy that program that will solve this problem and I’ll start selling things again. It just doesn’t work like that. You have to take accountability. You have to say, “hey, I’m willing to do this because I am in this for the long game, because I want my company to be here in five to 10 years from now, because I’m building this legacy. So I’m willing to get my hands dirty, to go talk to my customers, to spend time doing the research, to admit that I’ve fallen off, that I’m doing things wrong, that I need to change my delivery, that I need to update my offer.” Don’t waste time trying to blame an individual, or a company, or a coach, or a mastermind ,or a program, take the responsibility and take the action to go and change it.
That might sound harsh to you guys, but the faster you do that, the less time you waste trying to put band-aids over these holes, the less money you’re going to ultimately waste, because the faster you can get on track to fix them. You can update your messaging, you can make sure you’re relevant, make sure you’re connected to your audience, to your customers, to your leads, the faster you’re going to get back to that success. And then it’s going to happen again. So build in process to make sure you stay connected to that. I’ve personally experienced this. I mean, if we didn’t do anything to address the iOS updates, to look at the industry, to look at what clients are needing and their marketing, even right now we’re in conversation around including more video editing and reels editing because of how important they are. If I kept my service exactly the same for the last year or three years or two years, or even six months, it would be less helpful to my clients.
You have to adapt and change. You can look at this in big examples of big tech companies like Microsoft. They did not adapt and Apple took over. So if you think that you as a small business owner, probably in a way smaller capacity than Apple or Microsoft, think that you’re the exception to it, you’re not. Don’t waste the time trying to find the bandaid. Let’s go find the root problem. Let’s go back to the foundation. Let’s make sure we’re in alignment with what our audience, our leads, and our customers actually want. Let’s take that accountability. Let’s be the leaders and let’s step up so you can create that success. I’ve had to challenge myself to do this. It is sometimes exhausting because the industry is changing so fast, especially the marketing side of things, but it is absolutely critical and essential for success.
I hope this was helpful for you guys today. I didn’t want to be too hard on y’all, but I think everybody needs to hear this. This is also one of those things that people are not talking about enough. What drives me crazy is that there are coaches and agencies and people out there who know that this is the reality, but want to make the sale, so they still promise you, “I can fix it for you. Here’s what I’ll do.” But if there’s a foundational issue, like the offer, like the funnel, like the strategy itself, like the messaging, like the positioning, nothing will be able to overcome that. What you need is somebody to give you that real talk and say, “hey, I could do this for you. I could probably get your cost per lead down. I could probably improve that. I could probably help you with this, but we’ve got to go get to the root of this. We’ve got to get to the root of the problem. It’s going to take a month or two. Here’s what we’re going to do.” That’s the real talk. That’s what we do. Sometimes people don’t want that and then they don’t work with us, but at the end of the day, I only want us to work with people that we know we can help, people who are willing to do that and are at the place where they’re willing to put in that work for that foundation, for that sustainability. All right guys, thanks so much for tuning in. I’ll talk to you next time.