business-mistakes

Online Marketing & The Most Important Mindset Shift You MUST MAKE…

I spent a lot of time this week speaking with potential clients and during these conversations I noticed a common thread running throughout most of what they were saying and thinking about marketing and online marketing.  What I was hearing was so surprising to me that I just had to sit down and write about what I was seeing.

What I was hearing from these entrepreneurs was that they are all looking at and thinking of their marketing as a separate component of their business almost more like a “task”, something to be done once or handed over to a third party instead of as the SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT component of their business.  Marketing isn’t a task at all.  Marketing is the single most important piece of your business and is absolutely vital to its survival and yet so many entrepreneurs either ignore it or count on someone else to do it all for them.  Sound familiar?

Early in our business, we had the privilege of sitting under a lot of the teachings of a game-changing mentor Dan Kennedy (if you don’t know who he is, just Google his name, you’ll find out he is one of the most successful and respected sales/marketing minds of our era) and one of the things he always taught was that no matter what business you’re in… whether you’re a realtor, restaurant owner, landscaper, investor, business coach whatever you absolutely MUST look at yourself as a MARKETER first! 

If you’re a realtor… you need to become an expert marketer who sells homes.  If you’re a restaurant owner… you need to become an expert marketer who has restaurants.  If you’re a landscaper… you need to become an expert marketer who takes care of lawns.  If you’re a travel agent… you need to become an expert marketer who sells gorgeous vacations.  Got it? 

Your success depends entirely on how well you can market and reach your audience.  It doesn’t matter how good your services or products are if you don’t know how to attract a steady and consistent crowd of people coming into contact with you.  Make sense?

Every business is in the business of marketing.  Period.  Most business just aren’t seeing it this way and as a result they aren’t seeing the growth or success that they want and/or could have.

“But what about sales?”, you ask.  Well of course sales are important too.  It’s a pretty dang close tie.  It’s like what comes first?  The chicken or the egg?  You need to know how to sell, of course, but who will you sell to?  Where will your prospects come from that you are going to sell?  And if you do your marketing right, attracting the RIGHT KIND of prospects who want what you have, need what you have, and willing to pay for it… the selling will practically do itself.  This is NO JOKE (who wants to spend their entire day on ‘sales calls’ and ‘discovery sessions’ when you can sell in an EASIER WAY?) It’s all about WHO you’re attracting and HOW you’re attracting them. 

Anyways, back on point… We are FIRM, FIRM, FIRM believers that if you’re an entrepreneur… you ALWAYS need to have a finger on the pulse of your own marketing, no matter how much you delegate the implementation of sales pages, graphics, ads, all that…. you MUST understand and be in control of your marketing strategies and the growth plans for your business… and this takes a lot of ‘outside of your comfort zone’ kind of stuff. 

You’ve heard phrases like, “Do what you do BEST, and outsource the rest.”

You’ve heard the one, “Focus on your strengths, and outsource your weaknesses.”

Well how about this one?  Have you ever heard, “There’s an exception to EVERY rule”??? 

Most entrepreneurs got into business to do what they love, and so when it comes to the marketing and the ‘business muscle’ you just don’t want to work it. It feels uncomfortable, it’s hard to understand, it makes you feel weird, it’s not the thing that you find exhilarating and fulfilling, and so…. you avoid it.  Here’s the thing: Avoidance is NOT a game plan.

So you take those cliches above and you grab a hold of them as tight as tight can be.  And you think, “Yes!  Thank God! A way out from what is hard!” But it doesn’t work that way.  As long as you continue thinking, “I don’t have time to do my marketing… I don’t want to learn marketing… I need someone to do it for me so that I can do what I do best” you are selling yourself short.  The successful entrepreneurs don’t ignore or outsource their marketing strategies, they dig in with all they’ve got, they learn, learn and learn as much as they can, and they take control of their life & biz.  They don’t put the ability to make money in someone else’s hands.

So many entrepreneurs go from one coaching program to the other looking for that “secret sauce” or “magic formula” all the while ignoring the fact that marketing is THE key component and it’s a key component that CANNOT be segmented or fragmented.  And so they wind up learning about social media from here, or branding from here and then Facebook marketing here and the pieces of the puzzle aren’t fitting together cohesively.

Yes, your Facebook marketing is connected to your website strategy and yes, your email marketing is connected to your website strategy and vice versa.  Everything that you do to market your business has an impact on the other things and therefore this must be looked at as a whole strategy, there must be synergy amongst all of the components or you wind up undermining your efforts.  You wouldn’t believe how many entrepreneurs I speak to that tell me, “Well my website doesn’t really generate leads on a regular basis” or “social media must not be right for MY business”.  And they’ve arrived at this conclusion because everything they’ve been doing has been fragmented and isolated efforts.

The real shift here has to be in the way you think about marketing and the growth of your business.  Use the example I shared above from Dan Kennedy.  No matter what business you are in, you are really in the business of marketing.  Sometimes just a little 10 degree shift can have a huge impact on your business. 

What about you?  Do you think this little 10 degree shift is in order for YOU?  What kind of thoughts (or feelings) does it kick up for you?

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