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About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.

Written by: Vickie Sullivan  |  May 14, 2015

Two Kinds of Attention

Hearing from a lot of folks with great ideas. And all of them have one thing in common: they want those ideas to change how the world sees a particular situation.

There are two schools of brand strategy that get that attention. First, there’s the “let’s get out there” approach. Plans are built around standard Internet marketing tactics such as free stuff first, then small-fee stuff, etc. You get the idea. The focus is on what ideas work best and where should the content show up. A lot of good practical topics come out of this effort.

The second strategy is the “stop and think” approach. The focus is on the “what” first. The plan is to first define the territory you can dominate. Of all that is your perspective, what leads? What will capture your best audience/client’s attention? What will get that visceral reaction? Type A folks hate this. Feels too slow. And, of course, it’s a lot more fun to get out there and “do something.”

The problem: you need both. But many thought leaders get the order mixed up. If you focus on tactics first, you blow through so much time and money that by the time you find out that you’re missing that visceral reaction, you don’t have enough resources (including emotional energy) to fix it. Strategy drives the response to the tactics you deploy. It has to be on-target first.

As Chinese general Sun Tzu once said, “Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” Too many of us are in the latter situation. Let’s be slow in our victory. It’s far better than a noisy defeat.

 

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About Vickie Sullivan

Vickie Sullivan is internationally recognized as the top market strategist for thought leaders, professional speakers and B2B professional service firms. Specializing in brand and message strategies in crowded markets, she has helped thousands of talented people outsmart their competition since 1987.