Oh the shame of it!
‘Exp Jan 2014’, ‘Exp Mar 2016’, ‘Exp Oct 17’ read the labels.
My kitchen cupboards were a graveyard for ancient food so long past its best-before date that it was checking itself into a nursing home.
It was pretty bad.
Fusty old herbs turned to dust. Pickled vegetables floating freakily in their jars like specimens in Dr Frankenstein’s lab. Tins of god-knows-what with faded, withered labels.
But it really wasn’t my fault, you see.
My kitchen was, on the whole, pretty organised, clean and tidy. (I’m no Martha Stewart, but then I also haven’t been to prison, so…)
It was the design of my kitchen cupboards that was to blame. Really. Far too tall and deep, there was a Bermuda triangle of inaccessible space at the back of them where food would go to die and be forever forgotten.
Until recently at least, when these giant cabinets were torn down and my shameful hoard was exposed in front of tutting Polish builders (‘My wife – she would never let this happen.’)
But it’s so easy to do, isn’t it? To forget about things that we don’t see all the time. We all have dormant clothes in the back of our wardrobes and unused furniture in our attics.
And it’s why, I think, a lot of our marketing gets neglected. Because it’s just not top of mind. Blogs get all dusty. Newsletters die the death. Twitter feeds wither and perish.
Marketing plans get written at the beginning of each year but then get confined to the back of a drawer or nestled deep within the Cloud, never to see the light of day. They quickly reach their best-before dates, then their use-by dates and then become out-of-date and useless.
The best marketing plans (and the same goes for your business, sales or any type of plan in fact) are living, breathing documents. They get reviewed every week or month and get refreshed and updated when needed.
So I advise my clients to get visual with their plans – print them out and stick them somewhere they can see them every day. Or if they prefer, set reminders to review their documents online at regular intervals. And you should do the same.
So have a think about how to get YOUR plans out of their black holes and into the open.
It’s a simple thing, but having your plan more visible can make the difference between its success and failure. Give it a go!