Oh boy. I’m already cringing just thinking about the outrage and debate this one is sure to unleash.
I’m sure your first reaction was “WTF?”
And yes, technically, what I do for my clients falls into the ‘marketing’ bucket. So, aren’t I just saying no-one should hire me because marketing doesn’t work?!
Um no. I didn’t say “Marketing doesn’t work” … I said “Marketing doesn’t get you customers”.
If you’re reading this thinking … “Right, well I thought the WHOLE point of marketing WAS to get you customers, so if it doesn’t do that then WHAT THE HELL IS IT GOOD FOR?!”
Then this is definitely the post for you.
Why on earth would I say this?
Well, here’s the thing …
Marketing doesn’t get you customers. Trust does.
Let that one sink in.
While you do, let’s take a step back and look at what marketing really is.
Put very simply, marketing is everything you say, everything you print or publish and everything you do in the course of running or promoting your business.
Anything that exposes your business to employees, suppliers, customers, potential customers or the general public in any way is marketing your business. Because marketing at the most basic level is the collection of activities and collateral we use to get our message out into the world.
Yup. It really is that simple.
So. Posting on your Facebook business page is marketing, posting an ad on Facebook is marketing, attending a networking function is marketing, writing a blog post is marketing, your website design and copy is marketing, the way you treat your staff is marketing, sending out an email is … you guessed it … marketing. The list goes on but it’s getting pretty boring right?
Now, simply ‘marketing’ (or what most business owners think of when they think of marketing is in fact advertising) isn’t going to get you the results you want if you’re like any of my other clients – because the results they want from investing time and money in marketing are more sales.
You might still be shaking your head at all this but I have a question for you.
It’s a pretty prickly one …
What if the message you’re putting out there through all your hard marketing work just doesn’t connect with your ideal client?
What if what you’re saying doesn’t sound interesting or appealing even to your ideal client? If your message has no hook or packs no punch? What if it’s just bland, boring, beige and forgettable? What if no one wants what you have the way you’re pitching it? What if your message too salesy and feels like it belongs on an infomercial? What if the way you’re coming cross gives you have zero credibility?
The ultimate question really is what if the way you’re communicating your message (for whatever reason or reasons) is not creating the desired reaction in the person you’re communicating it to?
The desired reaction is that among other things they trust you, what you’re saying sounds credible, believable, honest and desirable. They have to feel that everything is lining up and making sense … what you’re saying, your personal presentation, your business card, your website … whatever they can see, hear, smell, taste, touch or feel.
If this is happening then simply repeating this message more frequently to more people across more channels just isn’t going to help.
Marketing AMPLIFY’S your message.
And there it is … the penny dropping.
Of all the marketing mistakes I’ve listed so far this is THE NUMBER ONE problem 95% of all my clients have.
But they don’t know they have it.
This is the main reason I have clients in my office every single week who have wasted tens of thousands of dollars on social media advertising campaigns that have delivered nothing, new websites that have completely missed the mark and don’t generate any business and wasted months going to networking events that have resulted in nothing more than a few small jobs and a lot of coffee meetings.
I’m not having a go at you if this is you (or you think it might be you), I’m speaking from experience. I spent YEARS not understanding this stuff which is probably why I’ve invested so heavily in figuring it out over the last few years.
And this is the FIRST thing I help my clients to fix, it’s about 85% of the battle in getting your marketing right.
It’s like geometry, 2 degrees off at the start doesn’t look like much BUT down the track a 45 degree angle instead of 90 degree angle is quite noticeable!
You may think you’ve got it ‘pretty much right’ and that there’s not much that needs to change … so you’ll just keep this website now you’ve paid for it, and just use those business cards up until they’re all gone. BUT as time goes on the distance between where you wanted to be and where you are get’s greater and greater. So fixing things ASAP really does pay off.
There’s a lot more to this one, and to cover it all off I’ve been working with my clients in a consulting or coaching capacity. I’m working hard on trying to develop a simple affordable product to help businesses with this one. Stay tuned … I don’t reckon it’s too far off.