When to throw in the towel

I wish I had a dollar for every single time someone told me marketing didn’t work. While I do not doubt their perception of this reality, I do wonder how they define “working” or “not working.” It is frustrating to pour time, money, and effort into something that does not net the results you are looking for. How do you know when to quit, abandon a campaign, change your message, turn off your social media, or in other words, throw in the towel?

The answer is like many things in life-circumstantial and not a hard and fast rule. Marketing is part art, part science. Here are a few tips to help you:

  • Define clear goals of a campaign
  • Speaking of campaigns, do a complete campaign (no one-off marketing projects)
  • Be consistent with your brand (same look, same message)
  • Always have a call to action
  • Set up ways to realistically measure your results
  • Test your variables (one at a time)
  • Set a budget that won’t cause you to abandon a campaign too early
  • Tweak as you go
  • Don’t fix what isn’t broken because you get bored

A very critical piece of making decisions is managing expectations. If you expect 100% readership of anything, you will be disappointed. If you need help setting realistic expectations, get help from colleagues with experience, or get help from a consultant. Maximizing your resources is tied to learning what realistic expectations are and being willing to make changes along the way.

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