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The Beaton Path

Connect The Dots

Jay Beaton - Monday, September 30, 2013

We have a great deal of fun at On The Beaton Path, and we love what we do. One of the reasons why we have as much fun as we do is because we subscribe to two philosophies: K.I.S.S. (Keep. It. Simple. Stupid.), and we play Connect The Dots. We often use a child’s eye to view situations. Many companies espouse the first. Let’s face it, if you can make a situation easy to read, digest, and understand, then the likelihood is great that a solution can be found, and success can be achieved.

With that said, how we at OTBP view all situations can be summed up by playing a child’s game, Connect The Dots. Now, you can give this fancy names like Relationship Associations and such, but there is nothing more Simple (see above), and more disarming than to trigger a memory of something long tucked away. There is nothing threatening about Connect The Dots. After all, it is a child’s game. But within that game lies a lesson on how to view situations (all situations). By the way, this is a natural trait for Conceptual Thinkers. It occurs naturally and regularly  and they may not realize that this is how they observe and dissect a situation.

What is Connect The Dots? It is a game

 where an array of dots are displayed on a page. The child may or may not see the picture, but as the child begins to connect the dots, using a pen, pencil, or crayon, and the image appears as more and more of the dots are connected. Many Creatives, no matter the age, can envision the end result even before they begin. That is the power in how they view the situation, in this case a picture. 

Let’s fast forward to adulthood, and present a situation that happens in business on a daily basis: Partnerships. When OTBP is called in to consult, we often ask 2 questions, “How can we connect the dots?”, and “How many different ways can we connect the dots?”

In trying to establish partnerships (see Partnering for Promotions), we look at many criteria, What is each business looking for in this partnership? What do they look for in success? Is it a local approach? Is it a specific industry? Is it a new geographic territory that a partner seeks to open? Is there a tie between the Partner #2‘s demographics and Partner #1‘s business needs? These are good first connections, but we need to look deeper. Is this the first time partnering? What was the response in previous partnership efforts? How can you better the results? What platform is the best platform for both? Can you run the promotion over multiple platforms (and still keep it simple)?

Not everyone is a conceptual thinker, and therefore cannot envision the image without connecting the dots. It’s our job to envision, and create the image, and by delivering superior marketing services, help our clients connect the dots successfully, and gain success from these situations.

The next time you find yourself faced with a project. Stop what you are doing, sit back for a moment and remember your childhood. Take out a blank piece of paper and think about what you are trying to create. If you find yourself at a loss for vision, try to connect the dots, and your picture will come into focus.


Jay Beaton is a Principal with On The Beaton Path, LLC, a marketing consulting firm. For more information, Contact him: jay.beaton@onthebeatonpath.com; or 312.925.7822.

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