Just In Time Vs. Just In Case Marketing

Before I begin, I have a confession to make: I got the idea for this piece from Oprah magazine. That being said, if you choose to continue to read, thank you.

Just in time marketing means understanding that you need to have an arsenal of techniques with which to react to changes, whether they’re in an engine’s algorithm or your seasonal business needs. It means that you aren’t actively holding onto anything that makes your marketing more cumbersome or cluttered, that you simply are able to adapt readily when necessary. This is like having a savings account that you aren’t using. It’s nice to know that, if you need it, you can access it. Just in time marketing means spending time reading, learning about what works and what doesn’t, and just generally staying informed so that you can react in a timely and appropriate manner. In case you care, just in time marketing has its roots in the Japanese factory industry. Instead of filling up their warehouses with parts needed, they’d simply order them just in time and save on storage. I may be oversimplifying but it’s not really a difficult concept to grasp.

It’s much less stressful than just in case marketing, where you continue to do things like spend $5000 a month on a banner ad that was good 2 years ago, isn’t doing much for you right now, but one day soon it might again. Yes, I know that the banner ad is enjoying a renaissance but I’m talking about the OLD banner ads, thanks. This is usually done by people who hang on to jeans that are 2 sizes too small in hopes that one day they’ll fit again. I don’t do that, for the record. I DO keep the ones that are 1 size too small though. Just in case marketing can tie up loads of your budget, and occupy your mind with things that aren’t going on RIGHT NOW. Even if you aren’t spending money actively, if you have to look at a PPC account for 50 keyphrases that you’re marketing that get zero traffic and maybe 5 total impressions per month, you’re spending time and effort that could be put to better use elsewhere. I say all this with complete respect, of course, as I tend to carry around an emergency string cheese wherever I go and I am rarely in an area with restricted cheese access.


Just in case marketing does have its place here, of course, but if you’ve done the basic SEO on a site, you’ve probably handled a lot of it already. The point of just in time marketing is the freedom that it gives you. If you’re not being pulled in a billion different useless directions, you’re more efficient with what you do need to be doing. As mentioned above, time spent monitoring something that isn’t productive for your needs is time taken away from something that could bring you more visibility. Instead of continuing to hope that someone searches for (insert obscure long-tailed keyphrase here), why not try and find some new keyphrases that will produce? I feel like one of those people who writes the “want to eat this, how about trying this instead, as it has half the fat?” articles now.

Obviously you’d not want to go to either of these extremes, as they each have their downsides. However, maybe if we spent a bit more time in the “just in time” mindset, we’d all be a lot more productive.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *