Can Elephants Really Learn to Dance?


Can a huge 150 year old company adapt to the new age of Marketing? Can an elephant learn to dance?

Just got a call from one of the largest and most highly respected insurance firms out there. They asked to meet with the President of Find New Customers.

That was certainly an inbound marketing win. I never called them. They read this blog, visited Find New Customers, downloaded our content, went into our lead nurturing program and was so intrigued, they called us to set a meeting with their top marketing executives.

This begs a question. Can a 150 year old huge insurance firm adapt to the new realities of the 21st century?

The odds are not good. Look at Kodak. Polaroid, Sony, and RIM (maker of Blackberry)- all three suffered from failure to adapt. They were, in effect, elephants that leaver learned to adapt. (Dance) And in BtoB Magazine reports that a study found the use of social media in Financial Services firms is “amateurish.” Big companies typically try and fail to adapt to this new world.

One elephant that did learn to dance was Milliken.  They invested heavily in people and innovation. They own over 2,200 patents today. Innovation became their main corporate value. Their business is booming. Congratulations, Milliken!

Will this prospect turn out to be a Kodak or a Milliken? Time will tell.

P.S. At the Content2Conversion Conference in NYC, I had a long chat with a lady who works for H-P. I heard many of the same issues I hear with many large firms - bureaucracy, politics, lack of innovation, complexity and more. This problem afflicts many large firms.

The author of this blog, Jeff Ogden, is President of the lead generation company and global marketing firm Find New Customers. He’s also the Producer and Host of Marketing Made Simple TV.

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