Stick With It – How Persistence in Advertising Pays Off

When I was a boy my family had horses and we would ride these mighty steeds every single weekend that the weather permitted us to. The idea was to get our horses in shape before we took them on a two week long trip to the mountains. Depending on the year we would go to the big skies of Montana, the snowcapped peaks of Wyoming, and sometimes even the granite filled Black Hills of South Dakota, which I now call home.

These trips produced so many memories that my brain couldn’t possibly hold them all. While the trips were the highlight of my summer vacation, the arduous drive from Minnesota out to these wonderful destinations was less than ideal for a young boy who couldn’t sit still for more than five minutes. However, there is one thing that I remember about these drives and all other drives when we crossed state lines with dad behind the wheel and mom napping in the passenger seat.

As we rattled down Interstate 90 with the horse trailer towed behind our “big truck” as we called it, we approached the South Dakota border. As soon as we hit the Welcome to South Dakota sign, like clockwork dad would sing, “Goodbye Minnesota, Helloooo South Dakota!” My sister was always more fun than me and would sing and wave along as we entered into the land of Mt. Rushmore, I never did. At that time I was “too cool for school” and to me, greeting states wasn’t something a “cool” person does. Even still, every time we would make it to a new state my dad would sing his little ditty.

After years of road trips, it became time for me to head off to college. I wasn’t able to make the journey home until Thanksgiving that first year and when I did something very strange happened. I crossed into Minnesota and sang out “Goodbye South Dakota, Helloooo Minnesota!” To this day no matter where I go and no matter if I’m in a car full of people or traveling solo, I sing the same little song and each time I do it brings a smile to my face.

But Bret, how does this relate to advertising in any way at all? Well, Mr. Hypothetical Question Asker let me explain: As marketers, we are often quick to jump on the next big idea or trend that is happening. We want so badly to keep up with the Joneses that often time we won’t give our campaign room to breathe. Think of my dad, he was consistent and persistent for nearly 20 years before he saw results, but he eventually did see results. Please, don’t run the same campaign for 20 years, but if you have a good idea, run with it and let it spread its wings. Maybe you won’t see results instantly but all good things come in time.