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bullseye representing content marketing

So much of marketing today is hit or miss. Imagine an archery target with tons of holes all over the surface along each of the rings. A few hit the bullseye, but most don’t. This is often the “going viral” strategy—try a whole bunch of stuff and hope something clicks.

Have you ever had an executive come to you and say, “Can’t you just make us a viral video?” If only it were that easy.

Businesses are competing against innumerable pieces of content bombarding their prospects and customers every single day. Consider these stats, courtesy of

In other words, it is awfully difficult to stand out with content.

According to HubSpot, 75 percent of people “don’t accept advertisements as truth,” yet 90 percent “believe brand recommendations from friends.”

The answer, then, is not to throw more money at marketing or advertising. That statement comes from someone who spent more than twenty years in Corporate America leading marketing teams at three Fortune 300 companies and two B2B companies.

Let’s consider just some of the most popular marketing channels today:

cartoon figure holding sign saying "customer"

There is a better way than spending more on marketing, and that is to focus on your existing customers. Listen to your customers, engage with them, and they will become your best marketers. That’s right, your existing customers will help you acquire new customers.

So stop constantly saddling your sales teams with unreasonably increasing sales goals every year, and start paying attention to your “leaky bucket.”

Almost every business has a leaky bucket. Most companies are focused on sales growth and bringing in new customers at the expense of the existing customers who are funding the business. Without our existing customers, we’re out of business. So why do companies spend so much money and time focused on higher and higher sales and new customer goals yet not nearly as much time with the customers they already have?

Retaining an existing customer is easier and cheaper than acquiring a new one, but the net effect is the same.


Excerpts taken from The Experience Maker: How To Create Remarkable Experiences That Your Customers Can’t Wait To Share by Dan Gingiss (Morgan James Publishing), available for pre-order now and releasing September 14, 2021.