Marketing like the beach

I spent last week at the beach with my family, and enjoyed a terrific vacation.


Now I'm back. I already miss being there and can't wait until I can get back again next summer!

Thinking more about that last statement, the beach must be using a pretty good marketing campaign. Let's take a look at what the beach is doing so successfully.

Be Persistent and Enjoyable

The beach gives me a consistently high enjoyment factor, every day I'm there.

  • Perfect Weather - we spent the whole week with mostly sunny skies and temperatures between 70 and 75 degrees.
  • Ocean Breeze - 75 degrees in direct sunlight can feel pretty hot in Phoenix (in early spring), but the beach provides a nice ocean breeze to help keep you cool. The breeze also has that ocean smell and feel to it - different from a windy afternoon in suburban Phoenix. (and better.)
  • The Sound of the Waves - Is there anything more relaxing than listening to the sound of the waves? And the waves never stop - they're a perfect example of persistence.
  • Waves to Swim In - Body surfing, boogey boarding, or just swimming and floating over the waves - it feels like a kid again to play in the ocean waves.
  • Sunsets - While Phoenix gives us sunsets with magnificent explosions of color, there's something uniquely pleasurable about watching the sun dip into the ocean at the end of the day.
  • Exercise without Working Out - Walking up and down the beach, swimming and body surfing, playing frisbee and smashball, walking to dinner - I exercised everyday without having to "work out" once.
  • Nostalgia - My family took a beach vacation every year when I was growing up, and I find being at the beach now gives me an occasional flashback feeling or warm memory.
  • Family Time without the pressures of everyday life - Being a vacation, we get to remove the pressures and deadlines of everyday life. But even more than other vacations, the beach is a place where there isn't much of an agenda; we get to focus more on each other.

Don't be Annoying

The beach isn't perfect, however, and has a couple behaviors that could use some work (from a marketing perspective).

  • Sand gets Everywhere - No matter how much you fluff the sand out of your towel, then wash your feet off at the boardwalk, then take a rinse-off shower outside the condo, then wipe your feet off on the mat - there still tends to be sand throughout the unit. Yesterday, my fifth day being home from the beach vacation. I pulled my wallet out at the grocery store and there were a couple grains of sand on my credit card. (and I don't even take my wallet down to the beach when I'm on vacation!) Depending on how much sand bugs you, this could be a real annoyance.
  • Clothes stay damp - At the end of the day we hang our wet swimsuits and towels out to dry on the balcony, and by morning they're no longer wet - only sort of damp. It's not like in Phoenix where a soaking wet towel dries in minutes.
  • Expensive - Let's face it, the beach is not affordable housing. Room rates are high, restaurants are expensive, and renting anything for entertainment will cost more than you think it should.

The beach isn't perfect, but it is good enough to pull me (and my vacation dollars) back year after year. We could all learn a thing or two from that:

What are your strengths? Are you using them consistently, day after day, with every client and prospect?

What are your weaknesses? Can you do anything to make them less weak? Are you doing anything which might be annoying for your clients and prospects?

Market yourself in such a way that people can't wait to see you again - like the beach - and you're on your way down the road to success.

- Chris Butterworth