Applying 10x thinking for better B2B marketing plans

If they ask for 10 % better, why not aim for 10x better?

At 1545 Charleston Avenue there is, by all accounts, an unassuming two-storey building that’s home to some pretty big brains.

These brains form part of a very secretive organisation that goes by the name of Google[x] – with a bold remit – to invent the future.

Wild rumours abound about what goes on there. It’s no surprise when the man in charge, one Astro Teller, says his team has genuinely spent time exploring the feasibility of levitation and teleportation. Whilst unfortunately that was a non-starter – Google Glass was one of Teller’s pet projects that has come to fruition. If you’re looking for ambition and innovation, Google[x] appears to have it in droves.

In a recent interview with Wired magazine, Teller shared a simple mantra that guides the Google[x] Labs – 10 times rather than 10%. The thinking is if you try to do something 10% better, you tend to work from where you are.

However, if you want to make something 10 times better, you need to think far harder and more laterally about what you’re going to do.

He cites the idea of a car that goes 50 miles to the gallon. Achieving 10% better fuel consumption would simply be about retooling the car. But tasked with achieving 10x better performance – 500 miles to the gallon – calls for a completely different approach.

So how could the 10x mantra apply to what you do?

Here’s an idea.

Next time you’re drawing up your marketing or campaign plan, no doubt you’ll have very specific, even aggressive targets, to achieve.

Draft the plan that you think would best achieve the objectives as usual – then set it aside.

Now get your team together, agency included, and collectively challenge yourselves with delivering a plan that would deliver 10x better return for the same marketing investment.

Then compare the two plans. Our guess is the original may now look a little underwhelming.

And while 10x better may be a big ask, it will hopefully challenge your preconceptions and make you think a whole lot bigger. Who knows, you may even end up with a plan that delivers way beyond expectations.

Because as Einstein once said, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

Here’s to B2B(x). Thinking 10x bigger and better.