Last Friday, June 26, 2015, the United States became the most populous country to legalize same-sex marriage.  This decision was the culmination of a movement that started way back in the ’70s.  That means this debate took about 40 years to resolve!

Think about that for a minute.  In the early years of this movement, there was very little success.  Just a lot of hard work with no payoff.  Then, about 30 years later in 2006, Massachusetts became the first state to legalize same-sex marriage. And then, more and more states jumped on board until same sex-marriage became the legal across the entire country on June 26.

What does that timeline remind you of?  A lot of hard work initially with very little reward.  Then a few small wins, and finally, success.

That sounds a lot like building a business doesn’t it?  Let’s take a closer look at some of the lessons from the same-sex marriage movement in the US.



Rome Wasn’t Built In a Day

Two of my favorite quotes by Steve Jobs are:

  1. “I’m convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.”
  2. “If you really look closely, most overnight successes took a long time.”

Both quotes highlight the importance of persistence when building your business and your marketing systems.  Again, it took about 40 years to legalize same-sex marriage in the US! That’s a really long time, but many businesses don’t hit their stride for many, many years after they start.

Creating your marketing systems is no different so don’t get frustrated if your digital marketing is not “crushing it” after just a few years.  Remember, success is just around the corner!


You Can’t Win the World Cup Unless You Qualify First

We’re in the midst of the Women’s World Cup and I’m happy to see the US is still a contender.  When the US team was formed, their goal was obviously to win the World Cup, but that was not their primary focus initially.  Instead, they had to focus on qualifying.  The early wins put the US in a position to reach their ultimate goal.

Similarly, in the years leading up to last Friday, the same-sex marriage movement had “won” several states first.  In doing so, they were in a better position to win the entire country.

To reach your business and marketing goals, break them down into smaller, qualifying goals.  For example, successful digital marketing includes:

  1. Many different traffic channels like SEO and advertising
  2. A website designed to maximize leads and sales
  3. Email marketing to follow up and nurture leads and customers
  4. Conversion tracking to measure and improve your campaigns

Don’t try to set up everything listed above all at once.  Instead, focus on just one to get a “win” under your belt.  Then systematically move on to the next until you have your entire marketing system in place.


Winning Begets More Winning

As mentioned above, it’s critical to break up larger goals into the smaller qualifying goals.  This not only makes the goals easier to attain, but it also creates more momentum so you reach the ultimate goal faster.

I mentioned already that Massachusetts was the first state to legalize same-sex marriage in 2006.  Again, that was about 30 years after the start of the movement in the ’70s.  Did it take 30 more years to get the second state?  Of course not!  That historical win in Massachusetts opened up the floodgates that led to the new national law just 9 years later.

This same momentum can be created as you add more and more to your digital marketing system.  For example, once you “win” in Google AdWords, then expanding to other networks like Bing and Facebook will not take nearly as long because you will have momentum on your side.  You will have found something that works, and you can take those lessons and apply them to different marketing channels.

So, if it seems like slow-going at first with your marketing, just remember to have perseverance, focus on getting some initial wins, and then apply the lessons from those initial wins. If you do this, then in time, you’ll gain more and more momentum… and eventually your marketing will become unstoppable.