Marketing Campaigns in 2016: Will you launch, or catapult your business?

There are obvious distinctions between the rocket ship, and the catapult. At first glance, the catapult is an ancient invention. Ousted by more powerful technologies, the catapult seems outdated. A rocket travels farther, faster, and is the “delivery vehicle” of the future, right?

The Catapult

Catapult your business

  • Ancient
  • Effective
  • Great Range
  • Inexpensive
  • Simple
  • Time-Tested

"A catapult is a ballistic device used to launch a projectile a great distance without the aid of explosive devices—particularly various types of ancient and medieval siege engines. Although the catapult has been used since ancient times, it has proven to be one of the most effective mechanisms during warfare." --

The Rocket

Rocket your business!

  • Complex
  • Expensive
  • Explosive
  • Long-Range
  • Powerful
  • Time-Tested

Compared with other propulsion methods, rockets are lightweight, powerful and capable of generating impressive acceleration.

The use of rockets date back to at least 13th century China.[3] Significant scientific, interplanetary and industrial use did not occur until the 20th century, when rocketry was the enabling technology for the Space Age, including setting foot on the moon. Rockets are now used for fireworks, weaponry, ejection seats, launch vehicles for artificial satellites, human spaceflight, and space exploration. --

How do catapults and rocket ships relate to marketing?

Let’s explore the pro’s and con’s of both. As the big picture develops, I know you will relate!


As it relates to marketing, the first trait I am going to discuss is acceleration. The catapult, like a rocket, stores energy and releases the energy to create momentum. In the case of the catapult the energy is released at once, and powerful momentum steadily declines until the target is impacted. In a rocket, energy is steadily released over a period of time. Initially much slower, momentum peaks as the rocket approaches its target.

When we are developing a marketing strategy, we tend to go one way or the other. Will our marketing campaign need to climb slowly off the launch pad (like a rocket), and gain momentum in the long run, or will our campaign need to spring into action, ultimately losing momentum in the end?

Of course, if our goal is to market an item on sale, the rapid acceleration from the catapult is the right choice, and certainly the rocket is a better approach for growing an audience.

Lucky for us in marketing, we can take advantage of both! A bit of brainstorming will help us to imagine a strategy that will combine these traits into a multi-faceted campaign.

Complexity vs. Simplicity:

We may assume that the rocket is recent technology, however the first rockets were used in China in the 13th century. Both the catapult and the rocket have a proven history, and both platforms are time-tested and efficient.

The fundamental difference between a catapult and a modern rocket are that a catapult is a relatively simple framework, whereas the rocket is can be extremely complex. However, a complex rocket is not always the case!

Remember that the rocket was developed in the 13th century as a tube containing fuel. By design, the rocket is truly simple. This also makes the rocket analogy extremely versatile where it pertains to marketing.

The marketing “catapult” strategy should always be simple. We want highly focused, instant momentum, to deliver a powerful short term impact.

The marketing “rocket” strategy can essentially be both. The simple rocket is lightweight, less complicated, and explosive. While the complex rocket is powerful, steady, and reaches broader audiences.

Earth to Mars… Are you still with me?

I could go on with many more analogies of catapults and rockets as they pertain to marketing, however my goal is simply this…

If we incorporate the principle advantages of both the catapult and the rocket ship into our marketing strategies, we will reap the benefits of both worlds!

What are you waiting for? Put on your thinking cap, and use creative thinking to plan the next successful marketing campaign!

I would love to hear your thoughts and comments! Do you have a “catapult vs. rocket” marketing analogy?

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