Marketing Agency In Phoenix: It Costs No More To Be An Optimist

By Allan Starr

While preparing for a presentation to a client at our Phoenix marketing agency, a promotional piece popped onto my computer screen. I was on deadline, but because I was a bit intrigued by the subject line, I decided to give it a glance. It promised to offer keys to success in what it called the ‘post recession business economy.’ Interesting choice of words, I thought, so I opened it.

The piece instantly brought to mind the following thoughts, listed here not necessarily in the order of importance:

— Even though there have been some signs of a partial recovery, there have been at least as many indicators that, indeed, we still are in a recession (some responsible pundits even hinting at a double-dipper).

— The perpetrator of this promo was an optimist, a charlatan, or both.

— So, what’s wrong with being an optimist, any way?

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The answer is nothing .. . so long as it remains an attitude rather than basis for planning ones next moves. John Kennedy called himself ‘an optimist without illusions’ (a self-serving self-description, but one that offered the hope, at least, that we were in good hands). We like leaders who are optimists, don’t we? If so, it seems our employees should, as well – doesn’t it?

My uncle said so

Flense Hawkins, my ne’er-do-well uncle who still plows the soil on his mini-spread up in Heber, AZ, may be the black sheep of the family (he’s detested mainly by the prudes in the clan, who methinks secretly envy him) told me something as a barefoot boy with cheek of tan that I never have forgotten: ‘It costs no more to be an optimist, Little Al.’

On many occasions that belief has been proven to be correct, especially considering the wrong turns we might have taken in our life were it not for ‘The power of positive thinking.’ (And, didn’t Norman Vincent Peale cash in on that line handsomely?)

And even though the only person Ol’ Flense commands these days is his horse, Sally, you can bet his strong hand on the reins are a comfort to her. And the probable deciding factor that gets them both back to the barn well before sunset and right at “Bud Time.”

The important part

Be that as it may, the important thing to consider is that, much like the pilots, we seem to get better mileage in business with a tail wind rather than a head wind. And, as heads of our companies, leading by example is a proven technique that trumps most others we may practice.

That said, instead of waiting for the recession to chew us up and spit us out, I subscribe to the principle that being a victor is better than being a victim. This process starts with acting like a winner by being proactive. And what better place to start than the adoption of a marketing plan that is conducive to success, rather than drift?

Someone has said failing to plan is closely akin to planning to fail. Go forward with a smile on your face; one that everybody, not the least of which are those on your staff, can see and emulate.

And, happy marketing!

About the Author: Allan Star, founder of Marketing Partners of Arizona (MPA), is former governor of the Southwest District of the American Advertising Federation (AAF), two-term president of The Arizona Small Business Assn. and served six terms on the board of directors of The Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce. MPA was founded in 1976 and provides strategic marketing, advertising, public relations, sponsorship procurement and internet marketing services nationwide.


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