LOVE Your Community So They Can Find YOU
Over and over again I see people fearful to take the next steps with their business. Just got in from a run and saw that a branding expert (genius, in fact) had posted in a group discussion about the fear of promoting his/her events, paralyzed, did anyone have any advice? I thought, “Yeah, grow a pair. It’s scary to step out and it’s risky to pay for promotion. But that’s how we grow business.” I thought, “Who works with a scared branding expert?” Then a voice inside me said, “People don’t work with jerks, either.” I didn’t respond because I’m not a jerk and I like this person.
Everyone freaks out eventually. Whether or not you break through it is what differentiates a success from a failure.
The whole exchange made me reflect a bit on why it is we do what we do. I come back to ‘why’ often, and you should, too. Today we have so many options for promotion that are entirely free, but learning how to use them effectively will either cost money or time. After all one spends on money or time to do an almost great job, we may still be lacking all the elements of a comprehensive approach that causes us to be approachable, familiar, or exposed to the ‘Tier 2’ customer who can afford our premium services. Without a solid ‘why’, we’re not going to take the bold steps we need to. The risk is great. It’s not too great for a business willing to purchase sales, because they get it.
Think about that. We naturally talk about our own business promotion as though it is an investment. That means we allocate monies to marketing strategies that will expose us and cause customers to purchase which will then make back the money spent. That’s the ideal.
That perspective also says, “First, I have to spend. And the risk is that no one responds.” Sure. That will always be the risk. But there’s another risk in the world of marketing today. We risk attracting customers who consistently want something for nothing, we risk helping them in an effort to ‘do right’ and make an eventual sale, and we risk wasting time on someone who never considered a purchase to begin with. Yep. All risky. In a content-driven, teach yourself social media, Facebook Live and everyone-has-a-podcast era, the biggest risk is that after all of that Google pandering, we are right back where we started but now exhausted with no additional sales to show for it.
Marketing is NOT an Investment.
Marketing is a challenge. Marketing leverages tools and feedback to increase results. Marketing – by far – is more about learning how to position your company for the higher paying customer who needs to know a little bit more about you than how you feel about a trending moment or why you think they should buy.
Wherever there is confusion or doubt, there is no sale. Marketing then must measure up to the inquiries of the person desiring your best. When fully played out, maximizing the end game for the satisfaction of your highest paying client, you are no longer investing in your company – you are purchasing sales.
So what does it cost to purchase a new customer? What does it cost to purchase a repeat customer? How often does that customer re-purchase?
Your efforts will need to match the end result. As Catherine Monson, CEO of FASTSIGNS International, stated in my interview earlier this year, you will never have a million dollar company with twenty dollar effort.
Listen, every company in 2017 will need to adopt an audio, video, mobile and back link strategy to succeed masterfully. Yes, some will merely hang on for dear life. But I’m talking about living a life in business that allows you to enjoy the fruits of your labor. You can’t be afraid to live the life you dream of, and your community needs to see you profitable as much as your family does.
Your strong, influential brand is the difference. Strong influential brands are doing some things you should be paying attention to and stepping into. No. Fear.
Only YOU can separate yourself from the rest, and you can’t do that doing what everyone else is doing.
Susan Hamilton is the Chief Executive Officer of OffBeat Business Media, highlighting business owner experience and insight to rebuild American business influence locally, nationally, and abroad. Discover how to leverage talk radio, video, articles and advertising for your strong, influential brand by clicking the contact button below.