What You Can Learn about Marketing Strategy from the Cleveland Browns

Win or lose, the Cleveland Browns have shown commitment in the face of challenge and we can all learn about marketing strategy from this comeback team.

cleveland browns, learn about business strategy
Photo courtesy of the NY Times at www.nytimes.com

So the Cleveland Browns is on a serious winning streak and I’ll be the first to admit that I am utterly amazed and am humbled to learn about marketing strategy from this comeback team.

Even die-hard fans can agree that the season started off pretty rocky. And with the Brandon Weeden (Browns quarterback) injury and Trent Richardson trade, most were ready to throw in the towel on yet another football season.

Then along comes Brian Hoyer, the local kid from St. Ignatius High School with a good arm and some pizzazz. And now the Browns are first in the AFC division. I don’t know the last time I heard “Cleveland Browns” and “first” in the same sentence.

The Browns faced some challenges early on and made some tough decisions that sent sports reporters and fans into a near cardiac arrest – but they are bouncing back, despite Hoyer’s recent injury (a torn ACL).

So what can we learn about marketing strategy from the Cleveland comeback team?

1.       It’s Good to Shake Up the Strategy

Trading running back Richardson seemed like the worst decision in the world. Fans were pissed off, sportscasters were in an uproar and the stadium seemed to have a dark cloud over it … until the next game when the Browns won.

As business owners, everyone may not agree with your decisions and strategies, but you can’t build success without taking risks.

2.       You Can’t Please Everyone

Every single game, Browns management is called everything but the son of God for play calling, quarterback decisions, etc.

Owning a small business is tough and sometimes, you have to make unpopular decisions to stay afloat. Sometimes your choices don’t work out and at times they do. The key is focusing on doing what’s best for your business because you can’t please everyone no matter what you do.

3.       Age Ain’t Nothing but a Number

Why the heck would the Browns trade a young, agile athlete like Richardson for a veteran like Willis McGahee? For the Browns, it wasn’t about age. The organization was in search of a specific skillset and saw McGahee as the guy, despite his age.

It’s easy for prospects and colleagues to judge you for being a young or old school entrepreneur, but at the end of the day, it’s your skill and professionalism that matter most. So whether you’re still “wet behind the ears” or a seasoned veteran, don’t let age get in the way of your dreams.

What’s the word: Marketing plans and strategies aren’t written in stone. It’s okay to tweak your plan until you’ve come up with a winning solution. 

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