The first of the final eight episodes in AMC’s television series Breaking Bad starts tonight, and it will be the end of one of television’s greatest characters, Walter White, played by Bryan Cranston. I got sucked into the series last summer when I burned through all four seasons on Netflix, then jumped in on the first eight episodes of the fifth season that were airing live on AMC at the time. I gotta say, I HATE following television dramas as they occur, because I cliff hangers annoy the crap out of me.
Heisenberg, Walter White’s alter ego in the show, is probably one of the best sub-characters in a television show, because of the character development and it representing the culmination of a once common man into a full-fledged drug lord. But, even though Heisenberg is not a hero and not a very like-able character, he’s important to the show. So for all of your Breaking Bad enthusiasts out there, I’m going to get creative and show you why you should approach Internet marketing like Heisenberg.
Approach Marketing with Confidence
The transformation of Walter White into Heisenberg was all about a passive man becoming a man who became very bold and confident in what he did. If you approach Internet marketing as just some other thing that you do or never really put together a solid strategy for it, you’ll never gain the type of leads or sales you’re looking for. You have too much competition in search, social, and email to be approaching it passively. Heisenberg was aggressive, and knew that if he was going to become the top dog in drug dealing, he couldn’t show weakness. If you show weakness as a marketer, your competition will win.
Be Willing to Take Risks
Walter was not a risk taker. Everything he did was calculated, and even when he did think of all of the angles, he would rarely go through with his plans. After watching the first and second season of Breaking Bad, this is one of the more major progressions you see from his character. He went from being extremely aversive to risk to being someone who was willing to think outside of the box and carry out a plan even if the risks were as high as losing his life.
You’re probably not curing cancer or making a life or death decision in marketing, but you may be faced with situations in marketing that cause you to take a risk. If your brand never goes outside of its comfort zone in marketing, it will never stand out from the competition. Look at Old Spice did with it’s Old Spice Guy campaign back in 2010. In the past, Old Spice was not thought of a forward thinking brand. It was the deodorant that your dad or grandpa used, but Old Spice saw that its demographic had started to change to the 16 – 35 crowd, so it created an entire YouTube campaign of hilarious videos. It chalked up eight figure YouTube views and doubled its sales within a year.
Be Proactive, not Reactive
Instead of letting things happen to him, Heisenberg knew that the dangerous life he led could not afford for him to be reactive in nature. He had to take matters into his own hands before he was either killed or the police caught on to him. In digital marketing, if you wait around to see what happens with your marketing campaign, you’ll end up not reaching your goals and ultimately failing. The industry changes every day. Google and Facebook do not consult Internet marketers before they make a change or announce a new product or guideline. I’m not suggesting that you try to always be ahead of the game, because that’s impossible, but instead of always finding yourself in a position of reaction against what’s happening, spend one hour a week thinking of ways you can better your brand and marketing strategy that doesn’t have to do with something you read in your feed reader.
My point of all this is to inspire you a little bit to stop walking through the motions of marketing. Don’t turn into a drug-dealing, self-absorbed bully, but start thinking outside of the box, take more control of your marketing strategy’s destiny, and for the love of God, watch Breaking Bad on Netflix if you haven’t done so yet!