Every so often, I like to check out Seth Godin's blog. His short, daily posts are full of interesting insights. He describes these outpourings as "riffs on marketing, respect, and the ways ideas spread".
So, Seth's latest post: "The myth of quick". In it, Seth addresses our perpetual search for the "quick fix" - from losing weight to building a business, we are often unwilling (whether through laziness, procrastination or fear) to slog it out to achieve the results we so desire. Therefore, we seek out "the pill, the neck crack, the organisational re-do that will fix everything".
And, as Seth points out, sometimes it works. Sometimes the quick fix does materialise. But it usually doesn't - everyone knows that juice fast isn't sustainable long-term, for instance.
In the age of social media, where we are bombarded by images of perfection and success at every turn, it can be easy to underestimate the stories and struggles that exist behind that carefully edited Instagram post, Facebook status or Tweet.
Real change requires real work, through all the ups and downs along the way.
And that's just as true when we think about content marketing. It takes time to create valuable content; it takes time to build up an audience; and it takes time to turn that audience into customers. However, in taking this time, we can engage more meaningfully with the people that matter most to our business.
As Seth says: "The instant win is largely a myth." So, aim for the win that occurs after hard work and determination.
The myth of quick...
Deep within each of us is the yearning for the pill, the neck crack, the organisational re-do that will fix everything.
Sometimes, it even happens. Sometimes, once in a very rare while, there actually is a stone in our shoe, easy to remove. And this rare occurrence serves to encourage our dreams that all of our problems have such a simple diagnosis and an even simpler remedy.
Alas, it's not true.
Culture takes years to create and years to change.
Illnesses rarely respond in days to a treatment.
Organisations that are drowning need to learn to swim.
Habits beat interventions every time...
There are innovations and moments that lead to change. But that change happens over time, with new rules causing new outputs that compound. The instant win is largely a myth.