EPISODE FORTY-TWO:

ACCEPTING CHANGE; The adoption process in America

Change is inevitable.

But growth is optional

– John Maxwell.

 

Today we talk about how businesses adapt to change, and adopt new practices and technology, to better reach their customers - on today’s Straight Shot marketing podcast.

 

People don’t like change. But change happens. Like John Maxwell said: Change, is inevitable. But growth, is optional. So the question is how quickly can your business adapt to change.

 

So Zachary, let’s discuss. The world is always turning. Society is always moving. Styles come and go. Words, slang, changes with each passing generation. Our lives, what we do within our lives, always change. How can the business community keep up?

 

Well, like you mentioned, people don’t like change. Businesses even more so. Running a business is like sailing a ship through the oceans of commerce. You concentrate on keeping it moving and making adjustments as necessary to reach your goal. But turning that ship, is not an easy task.

 

The key to reacting to changes in the ocean, or anywhere, starts with acceptance. You have to accept that change is happening, that change must happen or you are going to crash right into that iceberg (Titanic what?) and become ship wrecked.

 

But our job, as the companies, and the executives & marketing professionals that steer the ship for those companies is to keep ourselves in front of our audience – forever maintaining awareness and preferences while also soliciting new business to keep our ship moving forward.

 

That is the purpose of marketing, of business communications… and to do marketing right, you have to keep your business in front of your customers. To figure out the best move for your business, we have to understand the history of our society, businesses, and technology when it comes to the adoption process. Let’s discuss How The World Changes

 

Our society has gone through several shifts.

Society 1.0 – Hunter-Gatherer Society

Society 2.0 – Agrarian Society

Society 3.0 – Industrial Society Society

4.0 – Information Society

 

Each of these big-picture shifts occur in direct correlation to the technology innovations of the day.

 Society 1.0 – Hunter-Gatherer Society

• As we came – our tools where our hands and feet.. And rocks we found on the ground, sticks we found in the forest.

 

Society 2.0 – Agrarian Society

• Now we had tools for farming

 

Society 3.0 – Industrial Society

• We’ve learned machines. And machines revolutionize our society and our culture.

 

Society 4.0 – Information Society

• Now we have radio, television, internet and FAST access to information in ways like we never did before.

 

Now this is all very high level. Within each of this societal divisions we have things like the stone age, the bronze age, the iron age, the renaissance, the industrial age, etc.

Yes and even those are broken down… usually by generation (the GI generation, the Silent generation, Baby Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y, Millenials, Gen Z) or

 

Or if we aren’t talking specifically about people, we refer to them by their decades: The 20s, The 30s, The 50s, The 80s, etc.

 

But one of the keys even within these subdivisions is technology. The larger divisions mark bigger changes in technology. Once invented technology is often improved upon and people invent different variations there of, but once a huge invention comes along that marks the end of an era, we move into the next division.

 

Time is fascinating isn’t it. And people… I love to hear about people across time and to marvel at how they lived, the similarities with today and the differences. I think that’s why people enjoy period dramas on TV and in movies.

 

That and general nostalgia. Nostalgia is when you think on things in your own lifetime but I could sit and listed to older people about their lives as well.

 

Ok, back to business…. And the business community. Tell us how this change over time effects business.

 

Change effects everyone… including people working in businesses and business owners as well. But there are several keys to how businesses handle change:

1. Acceptance – we have to acknowledge change. Denial doesn’t help.

• Now I know that people don’t like change and businesses are filled with people.

• But keeping our heads in the sand isn’t beneficial for our companies.

 

So some people will be going against their very nature.

Owning a business, managing a business, isn’t an easy job. But someone has to be captain of the ship and if you are the boss, that’s you. And that means more responsibility and looking beyond your own nature – ask me how I know.

 

That’s true – I guess it comes with the territory…part of the job description when you sign up for the life of a business owner or high-level executive.

Yes, but people are flawed, we all are.. So here’s a tip to try to stay ahead of it.

 

Keep your ear the ground and our eyes on the horizon. We have to look for change, anticipating it, so that we can make the best decision we can for our companies.

This is why we have trade publications and associations, peer groups, etc. Keeping up awareness will make acceptance easier.

Here we go, getting deep again.

Owning a business is serious… it’s not as fun and games as some employees think it is  That’s one of the reasons owners and executives deserve the perk that they get within a company.

 

That’s true. And just like the way children treat their parents, business leaders are often under appreciated for these types of things. Keeping another human alive and well, sheltered and fed, safe and educated is a big task! They don’t know the long nights, the crying, the screaming,

Or the joy of when things are going well.. Running like a well-oiled machine… all pistons firing... All systems go -

- We use a lot of analogies you know that?

Yes, yes I do… best way to communicate a clear picture.

Another way to easy acceptance is to understand our past.

 

Let’s talk more about that. We’ve discussed the different societal divisions, but I know you talk more on this in some of your speaking engagements.

Yes, I often talk about the adoption process in a bit more detail that’s specific to whatever I’m teaching on. So let’s have it, we’re not going anywhere. Well one of the ways to understand and accept change is to see our track record as people.

 

Our World Continues To Change

Let’s look at from a different perspective… by industry in a way.

STORIES

1. Campfires

2. Theater

3. Books

4. Radio

5. Film

6. TV

7. Cable

8. Home Video

9. Streaming

 

MUSIC

1. Theater

2. Radio

3. Home Entertainment

• Records

• Tapes

• CDs

• MP3s

4. MTV

5. Home Video

6. YouTube (social media)

7. Streaming

 

NEWS

1. Town Crier

2. Print

3. Radio

4. TV

5. Websites

6. Social Media

 

RETAIL

1. Festivals

2. Catalogs & Mail Order

3. Brick & Mortar

4. Websites

 

Now, it gets more detailed as you look closer, like a microcosm.

 

1. Delivery of music

• Radio

• Boombox

• Walkman

• Car Stereos

• Ipod

• Phones

• Bluetooth

 

2. Personal Communications

• Shortwave Radio

• CB Radio

• Telephone

• Pagers/Beepers

• Cellphones

• Smartphones

 

3. File Delivery

• Hand delivery

• Mail

• Fax

• Email

• FTP

• The Cloud

 

4. Letting people know where your business is:

• Signage

• YP Directories

• Direct mail

• Search Engines

 

A little walk through history there… now, listeners, I want you to look at your own lives within those examples… Where do you fall? What are your experiences? What do you remember?

Now, as we said, people don’t like change and some of those took a long time to see become “normal” in our society. That’s very true, but by studying history, we can see that the adoption process has started to run it’s course quicker and quicker as time moves forward.

 

I have a chart that I’ll throw up on the screen for those of you watching us on video on apple podcast or youtube or wherever you can see the video version of the show.

In 1900s

• the telephone took over 40 years to become majority adopted.

• Electricity took around 25 years In the 1910s

• Cars took 10 years

In 1920s -Radio took 7 years

In 1930s-refrigerator - 10 yrs during the great depression

Now let’s jump forward a bit:

• In the 80s, Microwaves took 8 years

• 90s – internet took 6

• 2000s – HDTV – Less then 4;

• 2010s – social media about 3 years

• Smart phones took less than that

• Tablets took even less

 

When you line it all up like that, you can really see how the adoption rates have gotten to acceptance faster and faster.

 

Yes, now… here’s where it gets super interesting… if we break down the adoption process – regardless of how long it takes - we see some traits.

I’ve going to pull up a clip from my TikTok/IG Reels webinar that I did recently that talks about this.

 

Now guys, a lot of Zachary’s speaking engagements and webinars like this one are available on-demand in the member video library for patreon supporters. Just go to patreon.com/straightshot to gain access to the library… it’s part of the “Standard

Membership” level if you enjoy his teaches and want to learn more.

Yeah, right now there is about 9 hours worth of

content there right now and it’s growing everytime I do a talk or webinar. I also do live rebroadcasts on my facebook from time to time.

So be sure to follow his account as well – fb.com/bzacharybennett

 

Ok, next key, I’ve only talked about one:

Before we do that, let’s take a break. We have to take out to show some love to our sponsors. But when we get back – Key #2. See you in about 2 minutes

 

We are so thankful for our sponsors, they are who make it possible for us to put on this show. If you’d like to show your support, reach out to us at info@straightshot.net or visit patreon.com/straightshot for more info. Ok, we are back, let’s get back into it.

 

Ok, so #1 was Acceptance (using the wealth of history to ease and comfort us during that step.)

 

#2. Respect – when we see change coming, we always need to respect what has come before us. Disrespect can upset those that haven’t accepted the change. It can also move us to making rash decisions that aren’t always what’s best for

business. So, we have to keep grounded… don’t

chase every fad.

 

#3 is Self-education

• So you’ve kept your ear to the ground, you’re not acting rash or disrespectful – now you need to dive in and see what “this” is all about.

 

So they can do things like internet research, attend seminars and webinars – like you did for TikTok that you mentioned.

Exactly, and that’s precisely why I did that one. TikTok is new and taking the world by storm, so I did my research on it and then shared it with the

business community, it’s what I do.

 

I share it through my own social media, speaking engagements (webinars now thanks to Covid), in my consultation practice, etc.

Now, #4. Next is to Evaluation the Risks vs the Benefits. I don’t believe in making decisions without knowledge. What about wisdom? Wisdom and experience are important too, but you can’t fly the plane blind for long. And there’s another analogy. Always – but it’s important to lead yourself through this. You need to look at both sides and think of the

possibilities.

-Look at the history of the opportunity.

-Look into the hype, why are people excited?

-List the pros and cons of using the new technology or communication method from an open mind.

-Look at it in terms of strategy, is it long term or short term?

-Look at the costs associated. A lot of times, the cost are low enough that the risk is somewhat minimized.

I literally make a list and sit with it for a while as I’m making a decision.

 

#5 would be to look at the typical reasons of excuses for delayed adoption. Again, this is based on our history. What have people said before, when they decided to look this other way when it came to adopting a new process?

 

Why don’t you go through some of those here with us for our listeners.

 

Typical reasons or excuses for delayed adoption:

• I don’t like it

• It won’t take off / it’s a fad or flash in the pan

• It’s for kids

• Doesn’t apply to my business

 

Ask yourself, am I feeling or thinking any of these things & then evaluate the risks for your business:

• Will it hurt your business? - How much will it cost?

• What if I’m/They’re wrong? -

• Could I benefit from it now/later?

 

And lastly #6 get input from people you trust. That could be your board of directors, your management team, your employees, maybe you have a consultant or an agency. I know I get inquiries like this all the tim And how you ask for that input matters:

You don’t want to make a decision by committee. That is usually a mess. But get input. Say, I am considering and wanted to get your thoughts or what do you think of. You can present what you’ve learned and your thoughts or maybe you want a less researched more gut level response based on their own knowledge as it is.

In those cases it’s kind of like holding your own mini-focus group.

Very much. So, that’s what I have for today.. My 6 keys for leadership when considering change.

Well that’s a lot, thank you. Valuable as always. Now before I ask you for any Straight Shot for today’s episode, I want to remind our audience:

If you find Straight Shot valuable, or even if you Just like us a little – please, please, please – Hit that subscribe button, like this episode, click the bell if you are on youtube. It might not do a lot for you but it really helps us out with the algorhythms on these platforms. If you’ve already subscribed where you are, maybe go to a Different platform and subscribe and like to us there, tell your friends and collegues about us… you don’t have to keep us a secret Thank you so much for that.

Now, Zachary, tell us… what’s the Straight Shot for today’s episode:

Our world continues to change. You can’t stop it. The roles of marketing include connecting with the public where they live. in their lifestyle, with their emotions, meeting their needs, etc. And influencing them to choose your product or service and then prefer it in the marketplace.

 

Marketing is about PEOPLE. Marketing IS NOT about products or services.

Go to where they are living their lives, Make that connection, then fulfill their needs with whatever it is that you sell… and they’ll buy because they’ve connected with you, they like you, they feel you understand them, and you provide that product or service that they need.

 

And sometimes, that means using new tech. or new processes, new methods.

You want to be smart about it, but you also want to be quick.

If you are there before too many others make that same decision, then you have a larger audience all to yourself… with little saturation from other businesses or competitors. That is one way to find competitive edge.

 

Use these 6 keys to change for business.

1. Acceptance

2. Respect

3. Self Education

4. Evaluate the Risks and Benefits

5. Look out for common excuses

6. Get outside input

Then make your decision, commit to it, and measure your success.

 

Good stuff. Well guys, let us know what you thought of today’s content in the comments or on our social media if the platform you are on doesn’t have comments, I know some

Podcast platforms don’t. But on those, you can leave a review (wink). And let us know if you have a questions or a topic you’d like us to look into for you and make a show about.

 

You can email us at info@straightshot.net, call us at 678.825.8086 ext 300, or message us on our social media channels. Just search for “Straight Shot Marketing Podcast” (follow and like us while you are there) We want to hear from you.

 

Alright guys, that’s all for today - bye

 

 

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