Thursday, April 30, 2009

Fig Tree Provides Marketing Lesson

I just watched the company president unwrap his fig tree from a long winter's nap. For over an hour he took off bungee cords, rope, a tarp, and what looked like roofing paper. The tree's top shows evidence of pruning with a sharp knife prior to hibernation. Textbook gardening in my opinion.

Come September and October the tree will burst with plump, delicious figs, and soon family and friends, many of whom I only see around this time, will tip-toe into the backyard to snatch the juicy fruit for it's Vitamin A, C, and from what I understand, laxative properties.

The boss's actions over eight months ago allow him to reap a bountiful harvest. His preparation is a great example of effective marketing. Research, plan, implement, and as I saw him inspecting the tree after removal of its protective cover, to possibly adjust his future actions to improve his results.

My dad also has a fig tree that receives no pruning, no winter blanket, nothing. He does the complete opposite of my boss. The result? The fig tree produces small fruit and about a third of the yield. If dad was a marketing guy, he would fail miserably - no research, no planning, no implementation, and obviously, no results.

What to learn from this "Better Homes and Garden" moment? If you have planted the seed for a great marketing idea for your company or start-up, don't go in blindly. Do your homework, read some books, talk to the experts, budget, and most important, do something. Many marketing endeavors languish on the vine, never reaching their full potential and sometimes never having the opportunity to grow.

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