Are you wondering what on earth is shiny object syndrome (SOS)?

Well… It is the tendency to follow an idea or trend without first fully weighing up the pros/cons, alignment with your objectives and potential return on investment. As a result of being attracted to this new ‘shiny object’ you find yourself distracted from your current focus that could actually be delivering great results.

Shiny object syndrome is not entirely negative.

While it is important to focus on completing what you’ve started, it is also just as important to make time to investigate and consider new ‘shiny objects’ (after you have conducted appropriate research), and then make a calculated decision as to whether it is a good fit for your business, or not.

Is shiny object syndrome hindering your business growth?

You’ve just heard about the latest and greatest resource, tool, KPI, platform, program or product that is a MUST HAVE for your business.

You experience extreme FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out), so you are one of the first to sign up to and introduce the new ‘shiny object’.

Suddenly, months have passed and you haven’t experienced the amazing results that were pitched to you when you first committed to and invested in the new ‘shiny object’ Perhaps what originally seemed like a fantastic idea actually wasn’t, and you are left wondering what happened?

Shiny object syndrome happened.

Firstly, rest assured that we are all guilty of this to some degree. We see a new ‘shiny object’ and chase it without thinking it through fully.

What are the symptoms of shiny object syndrome?

Shiny object syndrome isn’t a syndrome as such. It’s a name given to an approach that’s pretty common among entrepreneurs and creatives.

  1. Inability to finish projects
    You get excited about a new project before your first one is complete and may jump ship before you see any real results and return on your investment. For example, if you invest in an email campaign program, you will need to stick with it consistently for a minimum of 6 months before you start to see real results
  2. You live like a frog
    You find yourself jumping from one project to another with the assumption that the new project will deliver higher results than the others.
  3. Novelty is the key driver
    People who suffer from SOS tend to focus on the novelty of pursuing a new strategy or making a specific change rather than the suitability or potential impact of the new strategy itself. For example, they may love the idea of creating a new product and begin work on development, however they have not determined a long term plan.
  4. Poor fit
    There are hundreds of new resources, tools, KPIs, platforms, programs and products that may seem impressive and effective to use, however are they the right fit for your business and aligned with the existing strategies?
  5. Confusing for staff and clients
    You aren’t the only one affected by your decisions and constantly altering direction and/or momentum. If you change your business’s direction too frequently, your staff (and clients) won’t be able to keep up. Over time, this can have a serious impact on client and employee loyalty and productivity.

Wanting to keep your business ahead of the pack and staying abreast of new possibilities aren’t bad goals. However, when SOS becomes apparent, it is important that you recognise it and exercise a certain degree of restraint and patience while conducting the required research and analysis.

Every business is unique and there is no one size fits all approach when it comes to determining your marketing strategies. You need to consider:

  1. Your business objectives – For example, are you looking to grow your business or just maintain your trail?
  2. Understand your business positioning – Do you specialise in helping first home buyers or asset finance? Understanding your target market is important as it will help determine the digital channels and platforms that you should be present on.
  3. The resources within your business – As indicated earlier, your digital presence is unlikely to be a set and forget strategy – it is likely to require regular maintenance and updates. Who will be responsible in your office and what time allocation will be given to achieving your objectives?
  4. What is the intent (the objective) of your digital presence? – Are you just looking to ensure that potential clients can find you or are you looking at it as a means to actively grow your business or maybe just engage with your existing clients through educational social media content?
  5. Your existing sales process – Your digital strategy should enhance and strengthen your existing sales process. In today’s market we are seeing more and more brokers utilising digital, primarily social media to deliver their sales process.

By understanding the above, you’ll be able to formulate deliberate marketing strategies to achieve your business objectives – whatever they may be.

Ready to say goodbye to shiny object syndrome?

The next time a new ‘shiny object’ appears, don’t rush to embrace and implement it. Take a breather, weigh-up the pros/cons and ask yourself the above questions to determine whether the new ‘shiny object’ is really a good fit for your business.

With so many experts telling us what marketing we MUST do and how to spend our budget, it is not unusual if you are feeling confused, sceptical and nervous about where to focus and what to spend on marketing.

Because after all…
Your Clients Matter


The YCM Marketing Team

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