The New Year is fast approaching and it’s time to make plans and set goals. Having New Year’s resolutions are a tradition we all take part in for our personal lives, but how about for our businesses in terms of marketing? Your business deserves marketing resolutions, but make them resolutions you’ll keep.
If you’re not sure where to start, look at some of the following ideas:
These are just a few simple ways to make marketing an important part of your business in 2013. Turn up the volume on your marketing efforts and keep track of your results. If you try something and you don’t get the results you seek then try something else. What’s the old adage, if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.
The Mad Lady is going on a holiday hiatus, but I’ll be back in January 2, 2013.
To everyone who reads my blog, I appreciate you very much and so glad you come by to read the Mad Lady’s marketing rants! So please have a very Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year!
Giving back to the community during this time of year or any time of year is another smart and inexpensive way to market your business.
Here are a few ideas on ways to give back and in return market your business at the same time.
There are so many ways to give back. You can get on the internet and look up a ton of other ways to give to others while marketing your business.
Remember, it’s always about marketing, but if you can help someone and in return help yourself, then I say go for it!
Marketing during the holidays is the perfect time to reach out and just say hello to your current and potential customers. You may not want to “go for the kill” so to speak, but this is the perfect time to make customers aware of your business.
Here are three ways to “softly” market your business.
If you think giving and sharing instead of selling and receiving, you will reach new customers and gain the respect and loyalty of your current customers.
So never miss an opportunity to market your business to others. Using creative ways will keep customers coming back for more and help you reach new ones.
The answer to this question is simple enough – MONEY!
To execute an effective and successful marketing plan, you will need money. You can either start your business with a marketing budget in your plans or not but one of these choices will cost you more money than the other. Can you guess which one? Yes, starting a business without a marketing budget will cost you more in the long run than starting a business with money set aside for marketing. How can that be? If you don’t include a marketing budget and try to build your business without marketing you may eventually reach your goals but it will take you longer and much more effort to do so. At some point, when you finally realize you need a marketing budget it may be too late.
Below is great information I found on the Small Business Administration (SBA) website.
“Whether you run a small business or a multi-million dollar corporation, marketing is essential to your profitability and growth. Yet many small businesses don’t allocate enough money to marketing or, worse, spend it haphazardly.
I recently got to know a business that was investing heavily in developing a hip, niche product to add to its already very cool product line. Seemed like a sure winner. However, it quickly became apparent that product development had occurred in a silo, while sales and marketing were off doing their own thing. The result? The week before launch, the business found itself with a fantastic product on its hands, but lacked a go-to-market plan or promotional material for the new product.
In a panic, an expensive PR firm, social media strategist, and marketing consultant were all pulled in to help drive awareness of the new product. Within a few weeks, the budget had run dry and the business had to quickly revisit its overall operational and sales and marketing strategy, while moving forward on a shoestring.
Products and services don’t sell themselves. By ignoring marketing until it’s too late, many small businesses risk hitting a brick wall and, quite possibly, failing. A hip and trendy product line shouldn’t rely solely on ongoing product investment and word of mouth.”
I included this information because it really drives the point home that marketing is essential and no business can make it without effective marketing and effective marketing requires a marketing budget.
I received a second, comment from H.W. again questioning my ability to “sell” my marketing services. Here is my response.
H.W. seems to think that it is my job to convince people to use my services. H.W. must have missed my post on 9/19/12 entitled – "Selling is Marketing but Marketing is NOT Selling", I along with thousands of other marketing agencies offer our services but it is up to the buyer to take us up on our offers. As marketing professionals, if all we’re concerned about is “closing the deal”, it takes away from our profession. We then become sales people and not marketing professionals.
Don’t get me wrong, whenever I create a marketing proposal for a business, it is my utmost desire to gain that customer but if I don’t, I don’t take it as a reflection on my expertise. I look at it for what it is. Some businesses just don’t have the money nor did they have the foresight to include a marketing budget when they started their business. That’s the reality. Their lack of funding or foresight has nothing to do with what I offer.
As H.W. put it, “people don’t buy what they need, they buy what they want”. I agree with that statement in regards to pure consumerism but we’re talking about business. Most small business owners barely have the capital to start a business let alone hire employees and then we add marketing on top of that? Most small business owner go into business under the impression that “word of mouth”, business cards or a few flyers are all they need for marketing. Once they realize these things aren’t producing the results they seek, they come to a marketing professional. When they come to the marketing professional, they have no more money than they had in the beginning and most times they have even less money. They are looking for someone who can help them make money without them having to spend much if any money. These are the people I’m talking to. I’m trying to get businesses on a shoestring budget to consider the importance of marketing and learn to put that important component into their everyday business practices.
Yes H.W., people do buy what they want over what they need. I want a million dollar house and no matter how good the sales person is, I know, at this point in time, I can’t buy that type of house so no matter how much I may want it, no matter how many realtors or banks I speak to, if it’s not in my budget, I can’t have it. I can look at expensive houses all day, every day but that won’t change my bank account. You may be the best sale person in the world but no matter how good you are you can’t make people buy what they don’t have the money for.
In conclusion H.W., you may want to read some of my previous post, before you question my abilities. I know what I do and I do it well. I have a host of satisfied customers who I didn’t have to “sell” to get them to sign with my agency.
It seems to me you’re looking for advice on selling not marketing. You may want to look for bloggers who offer that type of advice, but I speak about Marketing.
I received a comment via social media from a reader from New York. We will refer to him as H.W. He seemed to believe that the Mad Lady doesn’t live up to what she professes. I decided to respond to H.W. in my latest post.
Comment from H.W.
“…I went to that web site and read what the "mad lady" had to say and I have these questions.
If she is so good at marketing why can’t she convince prospects to pay her fees?
She seems to get them interested but yet doesn’t seem to be much of a closer.
What do you think?
Well H.W., you’ve got the Mad Lady really mad now!
If all you gleaned from that post is that the Mad Lady can’t get clients to pay her fees, it just goes to show me that you’re looking at this post as a negative on the Mad Lady and that’s your right but you’re wrong! If you look at the Green Leaf Marketing website, you’ll see that the Mad Lady’s wonderful team had and currently has customers who are more than willing to pay their fees. The point of the post was to get business owners to understand that marketing will help their business, but marketing cost money. It is not FREE! Too many business people contact me about marketing advice and suggestions and expect me to give them targeted advice about their business for free. None of us are in “business” to work for free. Some (not all) business owners who contact me want me to help them get more paying customers but they expect me to provide a free service. It’s not right and I’ve got to work to change the mindset of these types of business owners. Again, not all business owners think this way because some really get it. They understand that marketing works, marketing cost, and marketing is a necessary part of doing business.
So, don’t think the Mad Lady can’t do what she claims because she does it every day and has been doing it for years. Seriously, businesses are hurting in this economy and they are looking for ways to cut cost but don’t expect to cut cost on things that will make you money, which is what marketing does.
If you’re in business and you don’t have a marketing budget….get one! You need it. If you think you don’t and that I don’t know what I’m talking about then ask the other successful companies who depend on marketing for their success, i.e. McDonalds, GEICO, Progressive, Burger King, Car Companies, Clothing Stores, medical services and all the other businesses you see advertising. The advertisements and promotional events we see on television, hear about on radio, on the internet, in magazines, papers, etc…all stem from marketing.
So H.W., next time you want to “call the Mad Lady out” get your facts straight.
In anticipation of my response to H.W., the reader sent another interesting comment. I will address that comment in my next post on Wednesday. So stay tuned!
She is mad and she is not going to take it anymore! The Mad Lady Marketing Blog is just her way to drive home the importance of marketing in business. With over 15 years of experience in marketing, graphic design and communications, this marketing expert is mad (crazy) about marketing and mad (angry) at small businesses that don't understand or utilize marketing to promote their business.
Mad Lady Marketing is MAD!!
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