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Ready, Fire Aim (?)3 Min Read

Ready, Fire Aim (?)3 min read


The term, “Ready, Aim, Fire” comes from the military, going way, way back.

And then it gained popular usage in business and marketing.

Ready: Get your marketing campaign in order.

Aim: Clearly choose your target audience.

Fire: Launch your campaign.

OK, this makes sense, right?

But it was Tom Peters and Bob Waterman (“In Search of Excellence”) who first came up with the “ready-fire-aim” go-to-market strategy.

Ready: Get your marketing campaign in order.

Fire: Get your message out there as quickly as possible.

Aim: Once you see results, readjust and try again.

This is really about taking action before you’ve got something perfect.

I seem to do this naturally. I get an idea and I try to launch it as quickly as possible. Sometimes it works, but more often than not, I miss the target on the first attempt.

But I’ve really learned something valuable in that first attempt. So I make some changes and give it another try.

And this has led to many amazing successes.

I often call this “failing my way to success.”

When my clients over-prepare, try to get it perfect and procrastinate in getting out there, I know success will come more slowly for them.

The old, “Ready, Aim, Fire” approach leads to long delays, uncertainty, fear of doing it wrong, and often ends up with never even firing.

But the faster you can launch marketing activities imperfectly, the more you’ll learn and the faster results will come.

For instance, the first draft of a presentation takes me 3 or 4 hours. I present it and see how it works. I make adjustments and present it again. And before long, I’ve filled my next program.

Look, most of my marketing strategies cost no money. They just take some time and effort.

So, you don’t have much to lose by getting your presentation (or any other marketing strategy) to an acceptable state as fast as possible and then getting in front of as many people as you can.

Another saying related to this is, “fail fast.”

Yes, give a strategy your best shot as quickly as possible. If it fails, so what?

You’ve saved a lot of time, and then you try something else.

But here’s the big problem with all of this:

People don’t like to fail; they like to succeed.

People don’t like imperfection; they want to be perfect.

They want ready-made strategies that are proven to succeed.

Look, those kinds of strategies are definitely worth trying, but they are no guarantee of success.


Because your situation is dynamically different than everyone else’s.

You have a different service than everyone else.

You have a different market than everyone else.

And you’re different than everyone else.

So the best a so-called tried-and-true marketing strategy can do is make the “Ready” stage of the process a little faster.

Study it, think about it, and then put it together the best you can, as fast as possible.

And then Fire!

Want to do an email newsletter?

Want to do webinars?

Want to get in front of more prospective clients?

Ready, Fire, Aim.

Start today!

Cheers, Robert


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