Marketing is taking your business to the gym

You’re doing it wrong.

OK, well maybe not you, because you’re awesome – but most don’t do it right.

What is that you inquire? Marketing.

It’s interesting to actually think that there are successful business people out there that don’t understand marketing. And I guess I see how these people can think. Especially asĀ  a business owner, it’s incredibly important to look at the balance sheet and try to minimize the not needed expenses. But how do you know it is not needed, and why does it seem like marketing the first on the chopping block?

It’s kind of funny because businesses that say they “don’t do marketing” actually do. Every business does, but they don’t really know it or think of it as such. For instance, word of mouth advertising is even marketing. For some businesses, it’s the ONLY marketing they do. They let their customers tell their story. It’s usually combined with location marketing – or in other words, being in a popular street with a lot of traffic. Only when you add a controlled marketing medium on top of word of mouth advertising, you start controlling the message being said about your company.

Usually the business owners that try to avoid marketing have been burned by it in the past. This is easy to understand. When you market to the masses or use the “spray and pray” method, you usually end up spending a LOT of money, and don’t really have fantastic results because you may be only hitting a small percentage of the target market, and you without any tracking, you have nothing to show for it in the end.

Here’s the key: start small, and start super-targeted.

I once worked for a business that did radio advertising once using “market to the masses” method. They tried it once, and after it was said and done, they said never again. This is too bad, because I think radio is one of the most powerful forms of advertising, if you have the right message targeted to the right audience. Granted it is expensive with the allure of being on the top 40 station because you think “Everyone listens to Katy Perry, therefore everyone will like my brand.” It’s a misguided way to start, and a solid crash and burn when the budget is depleted in the first month. Rather, fine tune your message to a smaller market segment using a lesser known channel that you know your target audience listens to at the non-expensive time time slots once a week or few times a month.

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Here’s the second key: Don’t give up.

Marketing is an ongoing activity – much like going to the gym. You don’t go every day for a week straight to walk out on Friday night saying “Yeah, I’m done for good!” No – It’s a starting point. And for some it’s just the beginning, while for others, it’s a great way to stay in shape. It’s your choice.

When you give up on the marketing, that’s when the problems start. Then you usually hear “See, it never really work from the start.” Actually it did, but when you pulled the plug on marketing, that’s when the problems arose.

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The experts say that it takes roughly seven touches for a person being exposed to a brand to become a buyer. Keep that in mind constantly when doing your marketing activities – because each time a prospect is exposed to a brand, whether they see a logo or hear a jingle for your company, it counts. It starts building a story of your company in your prospects minds.

Marketing is storytelling. So tell a GOOD story. Tell YOUR story, and tell it OFTEN!

The key to getting a sale every time

It’s interesting people’s perception of sales if they’ve never been in the role before professionally. Many think it’s kind of a slimy thing. Well, the worst people, or in this case the aforementioned “slime-balls,” are the ones that try to push people into something they don’t want or need. They usually don’t end up doing sales for long. The truth is everyone can be a sales person no matter what you do.

The best people in sales are the ones that build the relationships. Because the ones that end up truly being successful are the ones that get what their customer wants. Sounds simple, right? Well that could mean more than you think. But in order to get your customer (or anyone, maybe even a friend) what they want is to simply listen to their needs. And I mean FULLY understand what they are looking for. This even goes for a product you’re not currently selling.

To be the best, you can’t think about the balance sheet, you need to think about treating the person you’re talking to like a friend. Getting to know people and building the relationships takes time, but has the longest lasting impact.

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So what is the “Key” that this article is titled for you may ask? Well other than all the great tidbits I was just informing you before, here’s the key:

Ask for the sale!

If you don’t ask for it, you won’t get it. Because chances are they’ll go to someone else who asked for it. Now this only works only if your product fits their needs, what I was talking about before. And in order to do that, you need to LISTEN to their needs.

Try it, and you’ll be surprised.