The Role of Luck in Marketing and In Life – by Christopher Ryan

As usual, I get many of my best blog ideas from reading what others write.  Today is a good example. BNET has a blog posting from Jessica Stillman titled How to Build Your Own Luck that got me to thinking about the role luck plays in my business and professional life as well as those of friends and business associates.  In her post, Jessica referenced another blog that claimed that luck is really a function of the quality of your network. 

I do agree in part but would amend this to say, “Luck is a by-product of the quality of your network and how hard you work.”  It is amazing how lucky you can feel if you network regularly and have a strong work ethic.  We like to think that this is why we are successful at Fusion Marketing Partners: work hard for existing clients and network with future clients.

Thus, when someone says to you: “You are really lucky that you landed that job”, the truth is that you spent a lot of time working your network and exposing yourself to quality potential employers.  When they say, ” You are lucky to have a great spouse”, the truth is that you kissed a lot of frogs (e.g. worked the network) until you found your life partner. 

Likewise, in marketing – unless you are in a market that is white hot – awareness, leads and sales don’t come to you just because you are lucky.  It may appear that way but the truth is, over time we reap what we sow.  There are a few exceptions to this but as the great golfer Gary Player observed, “The harder I work, the luckier I get.”  The same is true of networking – the more of it you do, the more so-called luck will come your way.   

By the way, networking works a whole lot better if you do it before a crisis hits.  If you have cultivated hundreds or even thousands of contacts while you are gainfully employed, these people will be more helpful than if you connect with them only when you are seeking a job.  Likewise, it is important to do favors for others when there is nothing you need.  This stuff almost always comes full circle.  And stay open to the opportunities that come your way.  Closed-minded people are seldom considered lucky.          

Incidentally, there are some great quotes about luck – a few of my favorites follow:

Luck: when your burst of energy doesn’t run afoul of someone else’s.” –  Mignon McLaughlin

“Be ready when opportunity comes…Luck is the time when preparation and opportunity meet.” – Roy D. Chapin Jr.

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“Some folk want their luck buttered.” – Thomas Hardy

“Each misfortune you encounter will carry in it the seed of tomorrow’s good luck.” – Og Mandino

“Don’t believe in miracles – depend on them.” – Laurence J. Peter

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Christopher Ryan

Christopher Ryan has 25 years of marketing, technology, revenue growth experience. As both a marketing executive and services provider, Chris has created and executed numerous programs that build market awareness, drive lead generation and increase revenue.
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One comment

  • Arman January 6, 2011   Reply →

    It’s actually really interesting to me that you made this post…

    I don’t know whose book I was reading the other day but he was talking about the relation between “luck” and the network of people you know.

    The book said that the more people you know, the more opportunities you’ll be offered…the more doors will be opened for you… and as a result the “luckier” you’ll be.

    I really agree with that… and then combine that with your idea of hard work, it’s perfect.

    Thomas Jefferson said it best… “The Harder I Work, The Luckier I get.”

    Great post.

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