Do you know what I’ve learned after almost a year of writing blog posts about race promotion?

It’s that you’re going to be ok if you don’t get it right the first time.

What do I mean by that?

Sometimes launching something that is good, is better than waiting until it is perfect.

I’ve promoted 5 races, written over 60 blog posts, and produced 17 podcasts in the past 9 months.

Were they all perfect?

Not a chance!

One of my races fell on an over 100-degree day, which greatly impacted turnout.

Several of my blog posts and email courses have glaring typos and spelling mistakes.

Something my editor is having a field day combing through and fixing.

And I’ve changed the format of my podcast 4-times now, trying to find a way to reduce production time.

None of those things scream perfect.

A couple of those things border on embarrassing.

A typo in a blog paragraph is one thing, but a type in a blog title that you then share on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin, is something that would make other people quit.

But not me.

Sure, typos and spelling mistakes are rough, but they also taught me to create a new process that includes the use of Google Docs, Grammarly, and a virtual Copy Editor.

It’s reduced those mistakes and hopefully made me a better writer.

If I had quit, I would never have improved.

Same is true for you.

Many race promoters hesitate when it comes to building a race.

They want their planning to perfect, their venue to be well selected, and all their marketing in place before they launch any effort to create the race.

Others have the opposite problem.

They work tirelessly on their race, spend more than they should to make it just right, only to have 30 racers show up on race day.

The disappointment is so great that they throw in the towel before they’ve even really started.

Which one are you?

Are you over-planning and trying to make your race perfect before it sees the light of day?

Or are you about to give it all up and try your hand at coaching football?

I’ve learned that you will never get it right. Ever.

You are going to make mistakes, create races that nobody comes to, or hesitate when you should be out promoting.

Don’t wait for perfect!

If you wait for perfect, you will never move forward, and you will never learn what works.

If you’re on the fence about your race planning, build it now!

No more waiting!

Until you have actual customers come to your event, you have no clue how “perfect” it really can be.

Stop worrying about perfection.

Sometimes, your “good race” is exactly what your customers want.

You might even be surprised to find that racers didn’t even notice all the extra planning you put into your race.

When that happens, you suddenly realize that nobody is going to punch you in the face if your race is just “good”.

Same goes for those that produced a race, and only 30 racers showed up.

When nobody knows who you are, you can make all sorts of mistakes.

Why? Because nobody is going to know!

Use those 30 racers to experiment, learn, and build a better racing business.

If you keep putting on effective races, those 30 are going to turn into 300 over time.

This business takes time.

Time to build your knowledge, time to build your confidence, and time to build your reputation.

One and done is not enough time to enjoy the benefits of owning an off-road racing business.

Race promoters come in all shapes and sizes, as do their problems and challenges.

However, we all fear the same things.

We fear not being ready for every eventuality.

None of us likes being laughed at for sticking our necks out.

And we all fear failure.

You need let go of all that fear.

You need to learn to let things you cannot control go, like what people will think about your race.

Focus on what you can control, like building courses, marketing races, and applying for permits.

Only when you put your creation out into the world will you truly learn how to build better races.

We have a limited amount of energy to create.

Don’t waste it on fear and what-ifs.

Focus on the right things to propel you forward by letting go of the hesitation and the perfection.

Build a race today.

Then build another tomorrow.

Then build another one and another one.

Build races until you learn to go from good to great.

Then when you look back on all that worry and fear, you’ll wonder why you ever thought that way at all.

Don’t waste your time on fear.

Use that time to build better races.

And now you know!

Posted by Kyle Bondo

Kyle started Reckoneer with the simple mission of helping those who want to become race directors and learn the mechanics of outdoor recreation engineering. Kyle demystifies outdoor racing with over 20 years of endurance and outdoor industry business knowledge. Combined with his top-rated podcast Merchants of Dirt, dozens of articles, lessons, and infographics, Kyle has made Reckoneer the premier educator in outdoor event management. Build better races today!

One Comment

  1. Wow, Kyle, great article. I replaced the word race and changed it to business. This is a great business article. I used to be a pretty good down hill ski racer-but- now I spend most of my time being too serious as I face the rat race.

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