Strategy vs. tactics: Does your company let the tail wag the dog?

Breakthrough in your business comes when you create the right strategy and implement the right tactics.

I was visiting a client last week and one of the folks asked me about secrets to getting to the top of Google search.  He then wanted to know about going viral on YouTube. Then everyone started chiming in. They wanted to know the tactics.

These days, a lot of companies get wrapped up in the tactics.  With all of the social media buzz (pun intended) going on, it is easy for organizations to be driven by a set of maneuvers. They hope these will act like Spanish flies, seducing new customers into following them on Twitter and handing over their wallets.

Don’t let the tail wag the dog.

A better philosophy is to be strategy-driven, provided it’s focused on the end goal (awareness, acquisition, retention, etc).  Developing the right strategy will incorporate the right set of plays, or tactics, that achieve the right connections that move a company towards success.

Kat French said it this way in a recent post on the Social Enthusiast, “The important thing to remember is to begin with the end in mind.  Plant your efforts firmly in the ground best suited to produce the harvest you’ve set as a goal.”

What if we:

  • Approached things with a clearly defined goal
  • Watched and listened for clues that would highlight potential paths to reach those goals
  • Chose the best tools and courses of action to meet objectives

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