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July 28, 2010 / jasonpinto

When Jellyfish Attack

Recently, I heard the following headline on the news: “150 people were stung by jellyfish at a New England beach”.

Now as soon as I heard this, I pictured an ocean that was absolutely infested with many jellyfish. From the shallow waters to the “deep-end”… In the waves and on the sand-bar… No matter where you tried to go, you were in danger of being stung.  The danger would not be reduced until great effort was taken to remove (or “shoo-away”) many, many, many jellyfish from the ocean.

This is what I pictured in my mind; that is, until I read the facts.

Yes, as the article states, the culprit was actually one jellyfish! Sure, it was huge. But once that jellyfish and its parts were removed, the ocean would become a safer place.

Jellyfish Attack Marketing Campaigns Too

When you have a marketing campaign perform a bit less than you expected, we naturally go into a “oh-my-what-went-wrong?!” mode. If we are not careful, we may start to believe that every component of our marketing effort is at fault.  In fact, you may start shouting items such as these:

  • You sent the email at the wrong time!
  • The call-to-action was bland!
  • The incentive/offer was lacking
  • Why would anyone respond to a URL with their name in it??
  • The creative was terrible.
  • The questions on the survey page were not compelling
  • , & on and on…

If we start feeling that everything went wrong with our campaign, then we may start to feel like we have an insurmountable hole to climb out of. That we have many jellyfish to deal with. This may cause us to put a major delay before we push forward with our next marketing efforts.  These types of actions will only hurt us.

Now, while I guess it’s slightly possible that we could make all of the above mistakes on a campaign, the chances are greater that we are better than that. If we truly pause and analyze the data and elements, we may find out that we are dealing with a smaller number of problems.

To analyze, we certainly need to devote time and effort. We also will need software that provides reports: Did many people open the email but not click the link? Did people view the survey page, and answer the first few questions, but bail out before hitting Submit?

Yes, if we can find and analyze answers to questions like that, we will be able to identify and fix our problem areas. Instead of chasing 150 jellyfish across the ocean, we’ll be taking steps to make our next marketing campaign that much better.

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