Pareto’s Law and Marketing in the 21st Century: Are You the 80 or the 20?
As most of you know, I was in Vegas this week teaching business owners in the pool and spa industry about sales and marketing. The experience was a rewarding one and some great relationships were built with other tremendous people over these last few days. Notwithstanding, I want to discuss a very interesting experience I had while giving my second seminar on Wednesday.
You see, this particular seminar was all about inbound marketing, as well as the need for small business owners in 2010 and beyond to take the reins of their web marketing destiny and know that yes, they can absolutely be their own webmaster and brander if they’ll but only have the faith and subsequent action to make this vision a reality.
By the end of the class, as the seminar was reaching its apex, I had one of those moments that speakers occasionally have when everything in the room slows down and you start to see everyone around you a little differently. In this case, what I was seeing, and feeling for that matter, was the sad reality of Pareto’s Law.
That Dang Pareto
You’ve heard of Pareto’s Law, it’s also known as the 80/20 or 90/10 rule. But as I was looking out at the audience of business owners, I suddenly felt overwhelmed and emotional at the fact that although the information I was giving them could literally help or even save their business, a very large majority would simply never act on the promptings they received in that class—whether they believed the teachings or not.
In fact, at best, maybe 10% of the participants will take inbound marketing and run with it. They’ll start a blog. They believe in the power of YouTube and video marketing. They’ll realize that with the CMS technology of companies like Hubspot they can be their own webmaster and finally get control. Yes, they will embrace a new way of thinking and with hard work elevate their company and brand to a level previously unattained.
At the same rate, there is another very large portion of the class that heard my words and felt their veracity yet something within them will hold them back. Something will keep them from taking the plunge. Maybe it’s fear. Maybe it’s other distractions. Or maybe their business just hasn’t hit rock bottom enough for them to experience the pain needed to realize serious change is needed.
Desire Leads to Emotion
Whatever the case may be, my heart literally went out to those people on Wednesday afternoon. After 75 minutes of pleading the case for a new way of thinking, for a few seconds my mind could only think of those good people that would not make a change on that day. Oddly, I found myself in front of this audience of 80+ people fighting back the tears. And as soon as I felt them coming, I literally had to stop myself, look away, and get it back together. After a few seconds, I was back on track.
Later on that night, my dear friend and business partner, Jason, discussed the moment with me I’m now speaking of. What’s interesting is that he said the emotion that came out in my words only further put an exclamation on the sincerity of the message, as it showed how much I really cared.
Boy was Jason right. I do care. I want other businesses to succeed. I know how inbound marketing and sales principles changed my life and I that’s why I write this blog in the first place. It’s not about the money. It’s not about the recognition. It’s all about helping others catch the vision.
So that’s my hope on this day. Don’t find yourself in the majority of Pareto’s Law. Fight against the status quo of average and normalcy. Look forward and be a part of the education-based and inbound marketing revolution that is happening all around us, just waiting for you to join in.