The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli is one of my favorite books. I re-read it constantly.
This Italian political treatise is about 500 years old, but contains a lot of insights into human behavior that translate well into modern life, particularly politics and marketing.
I recently thought of my favorite passage from The Prince during an awful client meltdown.
This situation will be familiar to many of my digital marketing friends:
- The client previously had significant engagement on their blog and social media.
- Organic visibility fell off now that Facebook and other social networks started pushing paid ads.
- The client doesn’t want to spend money on social media advertising, and blames your firm for supposedly providing subpar content.
- A competitor comes out of the bushes, and makes unrealistic promises of organic reach and other snake oil remedies.
- Client is now pissed.
When dealing with a client who refuses to accept digital marketing changes, I think about Machiavelli’s warning to leaders who face resistance to change: