Decisive Super Bowl Play Demonstrates Power of Being “Always Ready”

My last post was about why the Coast Guard motto, Always Ready, is also a valuable mindset for business and marketing teams.

Because something unbelievable happened at the end of Super Bowl XLIX between the New England Patriots and the Seattle Seahawks, “Always Ready” is a pertinent topic again.

Malcolm Butler wins Super Bowl XLIX for the New England Patriots. Credit: New England Patriots.

Malcolm Butler wins Super Bowl XLIX for the New England Patriots. Credit: New England Patriots.

Unless you’ve just come out of hibernation, you’re well aware of what happened Sunday night in Arizona. This is not the place to critique Seattle’s play selection.  You can find that everywhere.

Instead, let’s go behind the scenes and understand how one player made one of the all-time best plays in American sports history.

His name is Malcolm Butler.

In an interview on ESPN’s Mike & Mike radio program Monday morning, the rookie cornerback explained why he was ready.  Pay special attention to the end of the audio excerpt:

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Free Marketing Advice from the US Coast Guard

Credit: United States Coast Guard.

Credit: United States Coast Guard.

The motto for the United States Coast Guard is Always Ready (Semper Paratus).

It’s a good mindset for marketers, too.

The best are ready to adapt, change and adjust as needed, guided by a solid business strategy.  Of course, sometimes you also have to be ready to change the strategy.

Top performers are ready and able to:

  • Experiment
  • View and process things from a different lens (e.g., competitors, markets, colleagues)
  • Explore new ways to work better with their team
  • Understand that maybe the other guy is right (at least sometimes)
  • Embrace a new challenge or initiative

A now famous example of being ready led to the Oreo team’s real-time marketing success in the 2013 Super Bowl

Being ready usually means you’re in a position to be successful.  Consider one of my favorite quotes:  Luck is when preparation meets opportunity.

So I posed the following question to members of MENG, the Marketing Executives Networking Group:

What would you say is the number one most important thing for marketers to be ready about/ready for in 2015?

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