Tobin Lehman on Continuing to Improve Your Marketing Strategy in the Midst of Rapid Change | MP 54

Is there a simple and easy system you can use to test the efficacy of your marketing? Why should you focus more on short-term goals than long-term ones? What is the power behind testing and assessing your own data?

In this podcast episode, Sam Carvalho speaks with Tobin Lehman about continuing to improve your marketing strategy in the midst of rapid change.

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Meet Tobin Lehman

Tobin Lehman is an author and the founder of New North, an award-winning digital marketing agency dedicated to helping B2B technology firms grow. With over two decades of working with brands like Southern States, Pfizer, Thermo Fisher Scientific, Kimberly Clark, and a host of others, he has earned an industry reputation for taking the mystery out of marketing with clear strategies that earn real results.

With a Bachelor of Science degree in Graphic Design and Photography from Penn State, Tobin previously taught design and business courses as an adjunct professor at American University and Shepherd University. He has also served as a local President of the American Advertising Federation, and on the board of the local AIGA and other nonprofit boards.

Visit his website and connect on LinkedIn.

In This Podcast


  • Why agile thinking is better suited to an unpredictable market
  • Focus on smaller, short term goals
  • Minimize overcommitting

Why agile thinking is better suited to an unpredictable market

Really the agile idea here is just being nimble enough to not overcommit to an idea, and really to think [about] how we can create a process for seeing results incrementally before investing the whole thing. (Tobin Lehman)

Devising and working from a long-term plan without adequately planning for change will leave you stuck the moment an issue arises that was not a part of the process. In order to combat this, do not try to change the outcome, change your attitude towards them.

Having a flexible, agile, and adaptive attitude to issues and unpredictability will quicken your reaction time and strengthen your response to the issue, for both your business and you as a person, the CEO.

You can practice your mental agility by using these three steps:

  • Assessing: Look at the data and induce a hard reality check in your marketing to examine what is working and what is not.
  • Ideating: Once you have assessed your data, you can begin brainstorming. What are some ways that you can make your marketing better? Reach more people? Create a stronger connection?
  • Executing: Then, experiment with your change. Put it forward into the market and the process starts again, where you assess the data that you gather from executing the new idea.

One of the biggest temptations [in marketing] a lot of business owners have is looking across the street at a competitor and say “let’s just do what they’re doing!” and that’s only going to make you number two, that’s the reality. It’s only going to make you half as good as what they are because they’re the ones leading the way. (Tobin Lehman)

Focus on smaller, short-term goals

You can assess, ideate, and execute for many years without success if you are not working toward a specific goal. Having a goal in mind to achieve with your marketing will make it much easier for you to zoom in on what needs to be done in order for it to be achieved.

Chip away at your goal with the assess, ideate, and execution formula until it presents itself in the way you had envisioned, or perhaps you will be surprised by a different outcome. However, working with a goal is more fruitful and effective than working with an endgame for the whole strategy.

Break your overall, long-term marketing strategy into smaller, short-term goals and pursue those so that you do not get caught up in that rigid, one-track system mindset.

Minimize overcommitting

Even though you should hold steadfast to your goals and pursue them with intention and energy, there is a balance between committing and overcommitting that leads to the same rigidity that conflicts with having a flexible attitude.

Remember that it is important to assess your data when you are experimenting with different marketing strategies, instead of concentrating only on the execution because you need to also look at whether or not it is working in the first place.

Books by Tobin Lehman

Useful Links:

Meet Sam Carvalho

Samantha Carvalho DesignSam Carvalho is a graphic designer living in Cape Town, South Africa, with over five years of experience in both design and marketing, with a special interest and experience in the start-up environment.

She has been working with Practice of the Practice since 2016 and has helped over 70 therapist entrepreneurs take their practices to the next level by enhancing their visual branding. She loves working with a variety of clients on design-intensive tasks and is always up for a challenge!

Follow Sam on Instagram to see some of her work. To work with Sam, head on over to

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