First step to successful marketing

Marketing – just do it

Marketing is communicating the value of a product, service or brand to customers, for the purpose of promoting or selling that product, service, or brand.

Wikipedia definition

Wikipedia’s definition is nice and to the point.  It also leaves it open so that marketing can be relevant to all.  From large organisations to individuals, we are all in need of a bit of marketing. Many are timid when it comes to marketing – in a “who will want to know about me or my product” sort of way.  Others are positively disdainful in a “it’s all a bit sales-y and beneath me” sort of way.

From my work as a business coach and marketing consultant, I have come to realise that the one thing that many individuals and businesses lack, when it comes to their marketing, is confidence.  The timid ones – well, that’s obvious, but the disdainful ones – I believe they too lack the confidence to step out of their comfort zones and try something different. The disdain is just another way of dealing with something alien.

Start up business

You’ve got the idea, how to do it, you might event have some money behind you.  You are sure it’s a winner.  So how are you going to communicate this to your customers out there? I have seen so many businesses struggle at the beginning because they fit into the timid or disdainful categories.  Too shy to promote themselves – “they might think I’m show off, after all” or “ah, but I didn’t set this up to be a salesman”. Ah, but you are a salesman if you have a business.  Or at least you should be. Imagine how you might feel if you never let anyone know about your business and it never gets off the ground? Then imagine how it will feel when you look back at how you grew your successful business…

But I’m a professional….

Accountant, dentist, lawyer, whoever you are, if you’re in business, you’re going to have to be commercial. You have a service that you need to sell.  Otherwise you will find it pretty difficult to find customers, or clients. Yes, you may be able to employ a marketing person, but if you think that marketing is a separate part of the business, then you and they are going to struggle to get the message out there.  There has to be a connection and you have to see that getting your service into people’s minds is essential.

Customers will just come to us

This does happen. But rarely without a website (marketing), direct mailing (marketing), networking (marketing), events (marketing).

But marketing people are pushy

There are all types of people out there.  The best marketing experts are rarely noticed.  They are working too hard on getting your service in front of the right people. If you can’t afford a marketing person – make sure you do it properly yourself. There’s so much information on the internet now, there are lots of marketing talks and events. Get the basics right, and remember that letting people know about you, your product or service and your company is essential if you want to be successful.

It’s very exciting when the enquiries start coming in. Then you’ll be very pleased you found the confidence to promote your service or product. I’ve seen pretty under confident people set up in business and force themselves to get out there and win customers.

So the first step to successful marketing? Realise it’s got to be done and  just do it.

Catrin MacDonnell