“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.

— Mark Twain

It was 6:15 am.

I was waiting for the light to turn green.

A flock of colour, balanced on expensive skinny machines whizzed by.

In the flock was a man perched high on a monster wheel. A baby wheel followed.

Riding a Penny Farthing in a flock of thoroughbred racing bicycles takes courage.

I’m sure well-meaning friends and family offered him advice.

“You’ll fall and hurt yourself.”

“You’ll embarrass yourself.”

“People will laugh at you.”

“Buy a real bike, so you’ll fit in.”

Friends and family have our best interests at heart.

They want us to play safe, so we don’t get hurt.

But Penny Farthing man is courageous.

He climbed his bike and rode regardless.

Of the flock that past me that morning Penny Farthing man is the only one I remember.

In nature, standing alone or standing out means you’ll probably get eaten. Not a good strategy. Being part of a flock offers protection. It’s survival strategy 101.

Flocking behaviour

Sheep are best known for their strong flocking (herding) and following instinct. They will run from what frightens them and band together in large groups for protection. This is the only protection they have from predators. There is safety in numbers. It is harder for a predator to pick a sheep out of a group than to go after a few strays.

Follow the leader

When one sheep moves, the rest will follow, even if it is not a good idea. The flocking and following instinct of sheep is so strong that it caused the death of 400 sheep in 2006 in eastern Turkey. The sheep plunged to their death after one of the sheep tried to cross a 15-meter deep ravine, and the rest of the flock followed.

From Sheep 201, a beginners guide to raising sheep.

As a teen, you want to fit in, not stand out. So you do all you can to become part of the flock. You apply survival strategy 101.

Then you start a business.

And what strategy do you use to grow that business?

The one that comes easiest, Survival Strategy 101.

So, you study what others are doing in your category and do the same. You…

  • Sound the same in your ads.
  • Look the same.
  • Hire the same.
  • Pay your staff the same.
  • Price the same.
  • Discount the same.
  • Follow the same trends.
  • Attend the same training.
  • Use the same tactics.
  • Stay open the same hours.
  • Offer the same guarantees.
  • Post the same on Facebook and Instagram.

You become an expert in being the same.

An excellent strategy for sheep and teenagers but not for growing your business.

Being the same in business is a slippery slope to oblivion.

You need to be the business customers think of first and feel the best about.

What you need is a strategy to help you stand out and THRIVE, not just survive.

Businesses that grow BIG and profitable use the five-step Relational Systematic Marketing strategy. It is strategy different from what you are doing now.

So, if you want to grow your business it will take courage to change.

“Courage is doing what you’re afraid to do. There can be no courage unless you’re scared.”

— Eddie Rickenbacker

Jeff Bezos has courage.

Steve Jobs had courage

Penny Farthing man has courage.

I know you have courage too.

Until next week,

Work hard. Have fun.

Don’t have the time to do your own marketing; prefer to concentrate on running your business? Schedule an alignment meeting or send an email.