What Can Mountain Men Teach Us About Business?
I recently caught an episode of Mountain Men on History Channel. It’s a reality show that follows a group of men who each live on their own unforgiving landscape in various parts of North America. Battling grizzlies, mountain lions and other predators, they’ve been able to overcome harsh landscapes and live off the grid.
While many perceive living off the grid as frugal living there’s a larger lesson taking place here.
Living off the grid simply means being able to live off the land you have using the resources already there. The men use the timber already there for shelter, they use the animals already roaming the land for nourishment, and they use the natural waterways already formed for drinking & cooking. It’s an amazing display of ingenuity & a perfect example of how to get all you can out of what you’ve got.
Is your business getting all it can out of what it’s got? Or are you ignoring the resources right in front of you looking for better options?
Think of your customer database. Think about how much time, money & energy it took to grow your database. Think about all the possibilities you have right there in your database. Now, think about your most common marketing approach today. Most spend their time searching for new customers which is the most expensive and time consuming way to growth even when they don’t have to. Your database is your land. How can you live off it?
In order to live off your “database land” without having to spend more money on less successful & expensive tactics you’re going to need know the affinity you have with your database. If you’ve never sent anything to your existing database before they might not be ready to act as soon as you would like. Some might be saying well Brad that’s silly; who’s never not sent something to their existing customers? I know it sounds silly but it is very common. I’m not talking about general correspondence or a random e-mail every once in awhile. I’m talking about strong offers to get them back in.
A real example. An eye care practice who’d been using various forms of marketing with little results shared they had 4,000 patients in their database who’d not been in for their routine eye exam in the last 3 years. Upon investigation it was discovered that all the patients ever received was a reminder letter; once a year.
A shock & awe direct marketing program was created to re-activate these patients using a strong offer, direct mail, and a carefully crafted telemarketing script. The practice saw a record breaking number appointments unmatched in 30 years of business at a cost per acquisition less than half of what their new customer marketing approaches were delivering.
The lesson here is that there are plenty of resources you already have in your business. You just have to be looking at things like mountain men and ask yourself how can I live off the land I’ve already got?