We’ve all seen the Wayne Gretzky phrase coined above.
“The Great One” probably gave it out as a throwaway statement.
Many online (and offline) marketers have tried to live by the words and try to “skate” where the puck is going.
Most of them fail.
I fail often.
But, I fail QUICK.
And I learn from the experience.
Let me share a personal story with you.
When I was 13 I made myself a screwdriver in my metalwork class at school.
It started off life as a long shafted flathead screwdriver.
I couldn’t get it to be equally balanced and it got shorter and shorter as I tried to cover up my mistake.
Eventually it became a very short, ALL METAL, screwdriver and I was very proud of it.
I took it home, waved it at my parents and then took it downstairs to an underground car park which we had in our building.
I found an electric socket and decided to see what my metal screwdriver might do if I pushed it into the live socket.
I don’t know how I didn’t die.
What I do remember is being flung about 50 feet (alright it felt like 50 feet, might have been 3 or 4), landing on my back and making a bit of a mess in my undies.
Since then, I have had a healthy respect for electricians (and a morbid fear of screwdrivers).
But what has this got to do with hockey, marketers etc. I hear you ask.
Ever since that experience I have been a firm believer in doing what you do best and ignore what you are not good at, or find other people who excel at it.
I see so many marketers try to buy display media and get crucified.
I see business owners create their own hideous websites.
I see them design their own banner ads.
I see their awful PPC ads, everywhere.
Just because I could get a pair of pliers and yank out my own teeth, doesn’t mean that would be a clever thing to do.
There are experts for that sort of thing, they are called dentists.
But Jim, this still has nothing to do with pucks, hockey, skating, analogies etc.
Let’s get back to failing and failing quick.
I read a lot of forums where people are trying to become experts in PPC or PPV or media buying, or mobile advertising, or lead generation.
Makes sense, there are more visitors online now than there has ever been, so more eyeballs = more traffic, more leads, more sales.
The problem with that is most advertisers who read or hear about it, do so around the same time that everyone else reads about it, by which time the results are starting to go stale.
The real money has been made 6-12 months previously.
It’s been that way since the panning for gold days.
Most keyword research tools are giving you historical data, which is fine for trend-spotting, but the real secret sauce is in reading stories and research that is predicting what might happen somewhere and then be there when it happens. In a Gretzky-esque way of course.
Let me give you an example :
You’d be crazy not to see there is a lot of activity in the mobile space.
There is a site I read called Mobile Entertainment – The Business Of Mobile Content
They have nearly 48,000 pages of content in the Google search index.
One section of their site is called Market Data.
They have 1231 articles posted under market data. You can find that content at http://www.mobile-ent.biz/news/tag/market-data
Looking at the social sharing, they write a lot of content, but not many people spread the love.
Which is a shame, it’s all amazing content.
As an example here is an article that caught my eye :
So thinking like a puck, I can see in the next 14 months there are going to be 50% more mobile users in India in the next 14 months.
You could extrapolate there will be another 1.3 million dongles and as a result even if there was no increase in the amount of time spent there will still be 2-6 visits to videos, games and news sites from these extra 43 million users. The concept of off-deck is something completely new to me, worth exploring.
There are a few Indian industry trade bodies that are likely to always be putting out data about what is happening, so that means all I need to do is subscribe to the FREE daily news headline service, or subscribe to this site via an RSS reader and I can get all the data I need to understand which country WILL be big, which network WILL be the dominant player, which devices WILL everyone be using and I can formulate a plan of attack from there.
It might be 2 months or 24 months before it happens, they might get their numbers completely wrong, but I don’t have to spend my time doing research, I have other people in the form of news reporters like Daniel Gumble doing all the hard work for me, I can just stand like Wayne Gretzky scoring goal after goal and amazing people with my incredible vision….
You can read the whole article here http://www.mobile-ent.biz/news/read/india-to-reach-130m-mobile-web-users-by-march-2014/020216
Oh, and just now there was another article posted on another site http://www.pcr-online.biz/news/read/samsung-smartphone-sales-expected-to-grow-35-in-2013/029912 saying Samsung is going to sell 290 million handsets this year…. that’s 795,000 new handsets a day….
Jim takes the puck, he shoots, he scores