Are You Trapped in Groundhog Day?

Today’s the day … the day in which a 20-pound groundhog has informed us that we’ll see an early spring (atta boy, Punxsy Phil!). Yes, Punxsutawney Phil, America’s furriest weather reporter, has filed yet another report. I watched “Groundhog Day” for the first time recently, and it got me thinking about being trapped in a rut of nightmarish proportions.

Today’s the day … the day in which a 20-pound groundhog has informed us that we’ll see an early spring (atta boy, Punxsy Phil!). Yes, Punxsutawney Phil, America’s furriest weather reporter, has filed yet another report.


Courtesy of The Washington Post

I watched “Groundhog Day” for the first time recently (don’t judge me … I was 11 when it came out; my humor was not up to par), and it got me thinking about being trapped in a rut of nightmarish proportions, much like Bill Murray’s character, Phil Conors. It seems like it would go from bewildering, to amusing, to boring, to depressing, to … well, you’ve probably seen the movie and how Phil turns it around.

Groundhog DayNow, think about yourself. Are you trapped in a “marketing” Groundhog Day? Probably with fewer groundhogs (which is a bummer … they’re cute), and more tired campaigns, drab creative and design, frustrating workflows, and other things that make you feel like this:

Bill Murray Ground Hog Day Clock PunchOr maybe:

Groundhog Day Bill Murray Toaster in the BathOof. That got dark REAL quick.

But it’s happened to all of us. Sometimes we get trapped in doing the same old, same old because, well, it works. It makes money. It’s what our customers want. None of those are bad things.

That is, until it stops working. It stops making money. And either our customers don’t want it anymore, or we don’t want those kinds of customers.

When we get too comfortable, we get stale, unless what works is pushing ourselves out of our comfort zones constantly (If you’re doing that, can we chat? Because I would love some tips.).

As my Groundhog Day gift to you (Seriously Hallmark, where are the cards?), here are three “sassy” suggestions for breaking out of your personal Groundhog Day Marketing Hell and waking up to discover it’s Feb. 3 and life is good:

1. Question EVERYTHING. I might drive Thorin and other coworkers nuts with this at times, but when I’m free to comfortably question what we’re working on and why, I sometimes identify things we need to reconsider, change, etc. And then we have a moment of “Phew … good question!”

2. Say the Crazy Idea Out Loud. This is great for a couple of reasons. First, it gets it out there … off your mind and out of your mouth. I find thishelps me clear my mind to move on to better ideas. And secondly … sometimes the idea isn’t that crazy. And you know what, it could be really freaking good. But you have to embrace the totally out there in order to do this.

3. Determine What You Can Easily Test on the Cheap. Testing is great because it allows you to try things out; that said, it can get expensive, or become time consuming. But if you can figure out a few things to test easily and affordably, you might discover some really interesting things you can take action on.

Winnipeg Willow
Not only did Winnipeg Willow predict the weather in Canada, but she was a wildlife ambassador who taught children about the importance of eating veggies. I’m honestly sure she’ll be missed by those who cared for her. Photo from CBC.

And finally, in other sad weather-predicting rodent news, Canada’s own Winnipeg WIllow died this past Friday, unexpectedly. So I dedicate this post to you, Winni-Will … may you be munching on all the carrots and kale in the wildlife afterlife, and may it always be spring.

Author: Melissa Ward

Melissa Ward is the managing editor for Target Marketing, and she has opinions! More importantly, she's a nerd for great copy and design, a disciple of authenticity, and really loves it when marketers get it right.

4 thoughts on “Are You Trapped in Groundhog Day?”

    1. I know, right? Fun fact: Bill Murray was bitten by the groundhog twice during filming and had to have anti-rabies injections because the bites were so severe.(I still want to pet the groundhog though).

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