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5 practical things bouldering can teach you about successful marketing

One of my favourite hobbies is bouldering.

If you’re wondering what it is, here’s a brief explanation…

Bouldering is a less intense version of rock climbing, so there’s no need for ropes and harnesses. You’ll generally climb no higher than 20 feet (around 6 metres). It’s a great workout for both your body and mind.

You can go at it alone, get in your own zone for a couple of hours, or enjoy with friends – and even make new ones!

There’s also lots that bouldering can teach you about marketing. Here are five lessons you can learn.

1. It needs to be unique to you

Sometimes the clearest route isn’t the easiest. Everyone’s route up a wall will be different, depending on their own physique and skills.

In climbing, each route you set yourself is known as a “problem”. The aim is to solve your problem and get to the top.

To start off, it’s best to take a step back and look at the bigger picture.

Focus on where the problem begins, scope out how you’ll reach the top, then examine each hold. Be sure to take into consideration your height and ability. Try to imagine watching a video of yourself climbing the route.

It’s the same when it comes to marketing. There’s no one-size-fits-all approach, and a bespoke marketing plan will get optimal results.

2. Collaboration is key

Climbing is one of the most collaborative sports around, as you learn to work with others from your first day.

You’ll often get lots of people working on a wall. Some will crack it straight away. Others may find it a bit more of a challenge.

When you are climbing, you can’t always see where your next move could be. Sometimes you only need to move a smidge to the left, for other routes to open up. But, when you’re four metres up in the air and your palms start to sweat, it’s easy to start panicking.

That’s why it’s useful to have someone else’s perspective on what to do next. Others can help explain where to put your left foot or suggest potential ways to turn your body that you just might not have thought about.

It’s the same for your marketing. Listen and work with others and take on board any tips and tricks that’ll help you achieve the best outcome.

3. Patience and consistency are important

As long as you’re progressing, you’re a good climber.

To get “good” at bouldering, it can take around four years of practice. The longer you climb, the more you’ll become accustomed to looking at the bigger picture, noticing holds, visualising yourself climbing, and being able to break a “problem” down into small, easily digestible parts.

It’s good to push yourself and try harder “problems” but you may need to take a break to get your breakthrough. Or sometimes you need to take a break in order to let your muscles heal, ready for your next session.

With commitment and consistency, you will see the results you want to get. It’s the same for marketing (and something we talk about a lot).

Picture how you’ll hit the holds, and then focus on where your arm will face, and then which way your body will turn on each hold. Visualise yourself moving off the holds toward higher grips. Keep in mind where you might need to move faster because of difficulty and where you can move slower.

4. You need the right equipment to help you

Most climbers use climbing shoes. These aren’t as comfy as your favourite trainers but are essential as they stick to the surfaces much better, allowing you to feel all the features in the wall and provide extra grip when climbing.

Chalk helps counteract sweaty palms and provides a firmer grip. It’s not hard to see why increased grip is key when scaling walls or boulders using only your hands and feet.

Climbing tape is useful to keep handy, for when your hand slips off a hold and you tear the skin on the pads of your fingers.

Using a bouldering crash mat is essential to prevent injuries from falls. Since the height you climb at doesn’t warrant using ropes and harnesses, a crash mat is the only thing between you and the hard floor below.

It’s about having the right tools for the job. In marketing, it might include having the right systems in place to help you.

5. Knowing what to aim for next once you’re at the top

Great, you’re now at the top! You have the buzz from reaching your goal. As Eminem once said your palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy, but that’s all part of the experience.

Okay so now what? Now it’s time to get back down and tackle the next problem.

Maybe the next one will be more challenging? Or maybe you set yourself a simpler problem. That’s the beauty, you can do what you like. No two routes are the same. Set yourself easily achievable goals, or really push yourself. It’s the same when you write your marketing plan and you set out your goals and aspirations.

Sometimes you might find yourself between a rock and a hard place when it comes to marketing. So, if you need help figuring out which route to take, get in touch with us at The Yardstick Agency. Email or call 0115 8965 300.

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