The best marketing ideas come from different industries
Arsene Wenger arrived at Arsenal football club in 1996 and immediately banned Mars bars from the changing room. That wasn’t all he banned. Arsenal, one of the biggest clubs in English football, had a heavy drinking culture. Considering they were professional athletes, the players were eating unhealthily: food like pies, fish and chips.
Wenger was a French coach and after a successful spell at Monaco, he worked in Japan for a year before moving to England. The eating and drinking culture he encountered wasn’t unique to Arsenal.
Wenger introduced a new nutrition regimen at Arsenal. Players were no longer permitted to go on pub crawls during the week. They were eating grilled chicken and pasta before matches rather than steak and chips.
This change transformed the Premier League. With hindsight, Arsenal’s players were unsurprisingly fitter, leaner, quicker and stronger than they had been. They were already a talented group of players. But, with the impact of the new eating regime, Arsenal went on to win two domestic League and FA Cup doubles.
The diet wasn’t the only reason for success. Wenger brought in a handful of high quality players from Europe in the early days which improved the squad. But, on the whole, the transformation in performance was down to the new diet and culture at the club.
After two or three years, competitors in England began to copy the changes Wenger had made with nutrition, and the competitive advantage was gone. Wenger didn’t win another title again after 2002 (he was at the club until 2018).
New methods transform the landscape
This is a recurring theme in football. Allardyce did it with Sports Science at Bolton and Mourinho with in-depth opposition analysis. Both reaped enormous ‘breakthrough’ rewards, significantly overachieving relative to their resources available. Competitors then catch on two or three years after and the advantage disappears, which leads to a level out in achievement.
The myth is that these men are genius’ who ‘transform football’. They’re not, but that’s not to downplay what they achieve. They introduced new methods which are alien to the market they work in, which produces remarkable results.
Wenger didn’t invent the dietary regimens he introduced at Arsenal. He learned about the importance of diet through a previous manager 1. He built on that knowledge via his own experiences in coaching and playing. When he arrived in England, nutrition was not given much consideration, and by introducing it to Arsenal he gave his team a competitive advantage.[/efn_note]. He built on that knowledge via his own experiences in coaching and playing. When he arrived in England, nutrition was not given much consideration, and by introducing it to Arsenal he gave his team a competitive advantage.
Sam Allardyce took Sports Science concepts from other sports (namely NFL) and introduced them to a league and sport which wasn’t using them. The result was a breakthrough moment and extreme competitive advantage, meaning that Bolton Wanderers seriously overachieved considering the resources that they had available.
Mourinho did the same with in-depth competitor analysis. This was happening in different sports. Mourinho didn’t invent it, but he had the foresight to look at what other sports were doing and consider how different methods would translate in football.
Jay Abraham refers to these as breakthrough moments, and they’re available to every single business owner willing to research strategies and models used in other industries. For example, content marketing is used by practically every online marketing agency to drive website growth, and therefore increase inbound leads. If you were to set-up a marketing agency and deploy content marketing to increase website traffic, you’d be doing what every other competitor has done before you. Only difference being they started earlier so you’re at a disadvantage. You won’t see a great deal of movement in your numbers or enquiries.
But, if you take content marketing and implement it in a different industry where it’s not widely used effectively, say construction, you’ll find it has a monumental impact on the volume of enquiries coming into your business.
You didn’t invent content marketing. You’ve seen it work in other industries, taken the blueprint and translated it for your own industry where it’s not being used, giving you a competitive advantage in online marketing.
Transformative strategies are there for the taking
It’s highly likely the best marketing strategies and tactics available to your business are those which are happening in other industries. When you start looking for them, you’ll find that it’s not hard to find them, because everybody in that industry is using the same strategy. But, when you implement the strategy in a new environment, the impact can be transformative.