A long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away in a planetary system called Sol, one planet’s residents had the ambition to colonize it’s red, barren neighbor.
But as it turns out, they had only the means of reaching the planet but have no sure means of surviving neither the journey nor the harsh environment once they arrived.
The tragedy of the Mars One project represents a common B2B marketing problem within the tech sector: overestimation. It’s not just issues of miscalculations or bad quotes. It’s the sheer overestimation of what current technology can do.
It’s not the first time the Mars One Colonization Project has been brought under scrutiny for the age-old fact that we are not technologically capable yet.
For example, in order to make the place suitable for life, we’d still need more advanced space travel and transportation, along with secured life support if you’re planning on any construction’s on Mars’ red, rocky platforms.
Don’t even get started on the financial backing, advanced medical tools, greater technical expertise that’s further required. In our current state, achievement in 30-50 years would still be a very generous estimate.
Tech marketers and lead generators need to slice off whole chapters from their book. You might very well be in the same boat, making astonishing promises to prospects but actually lacking the necessary technology to.
Are you too optimistic?
On the one hand, you have Mars One, a privately owned NPO. On the other, you have NASA which is the go-to organization for space travel (because you know, they’ve actually been to space). Who are you going to believe? The one with just the fancy simulation video or the one who actually went through a nightmare just to plant an actual drone on the red planet?
Unlike in science fiction, advanced tech isn’t always at your disposal (even if you’re the one selling it). Just as the critics find Mars One far too optimistic, you need someone to get your head back on the ground when pitching a rosy proposal on what your IT products can do.
Do you have a real budget plan?
The project’s estimated $6 billion budget was seen to be too low to successfully transport, much less colonize Mars. NASA made a similar study and had an estimated cost of at least $100 billion (and that’s just for a successful landing).
So what’s MO’s answer to that? Funding via reality TV show.
Really? Do you really think a proposed budget plan like that is even going to fly with your prospect CIO? Talk to your sales reps (as marketers always should). Even they could come up with a better pricing model for your tech compared to something so naïve.
Are you neglecting health and ethics?
Another controversial statement by Mars One is their focus on not really the science but the idea of livelihood on the red planet.
From a marketer’s point of view, that’s like ignoring all the possible dangers just for the sake of keeping prospect’s eyes one the dream. It sounds motivational at first but you should at least consider how these obstacles can keep your prospect’s goals from being realized.
Think of the natural hazards of space and Mars as the equivalent to the health hazards sometimes posed by technology in the work place. Users that are often too stressed and overloaded from the digitized workload can’t possibly achieve the efficiency they wanted to have.
Like the Mars One project, there are still many ways your technology could wreak havoc in a prospect organization. Be careful about overestimating your technology in front of potential clients because there’s always going to be somebody who’ll call you out on it.