Archive for May, 2014

Reinventing Your Marketing Model

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If you’ve been in business for a while, you probably already have a marketing model that is working for you. Or, at least it used to work for you

There are seven different areas in your business where rethinking and reinvention are possible: Marketing is a great area for innovation and change!

Have things changed in your business and marketing?

  1. Your audience isn’t reacting to your marketing techniques the way they used to.
  2. You are bored with your marketing techniques, so you’re not doing them as consistently as you once did, and the quality of your marketing is suffering.
  3. You’ve become complacent because business is going great, and stopped paying attention to “big picture” strategic marketing planning.
  4. Your marketing techniques are stale, outdated.
  5. You’re totally freaked out by the amount of work you have to do, so some things just get put on the back burner, like marketing (and remembering to eat).

Time to shake things up!

Last time I counted, there are over 80 offline and online marketing techniques you can use. There’s one for everyone. Why not try a new marketing technique you haven’t tried yet but have always been curious about?

If you’re feeling the innovation itch, why not combine two techniques into something original and noteworthy?

For instance, could you combine a free, funny bumper sticker giveaway with a contest?

What about combining a free webinar with a SEO using a strong article or blog post, to increase sign-ups and boost your mailing list?

Pick a new technique or combine two! Jazz it up!

Here’s the trick.

Don’t overwhelm yourself with trying to do 20 new marketing techniques at once. Choose one, learn all about it, try it out, track your results, and master that technique. Then do it again with the next new one.

Having an annual marketing plan will help. You could schedule a new marketing technique each quarter, based on your goals and what you’re promoting that quarter.

Maybe it’s time to delegate?

One big reason why seasoned business owners don’t do the level of marketing that they should do is that they simply run out of time and energy. Just because you’re the business owner doesn’t mean you have to be the head of each department.

I know, I know: you’ve heard that you should delegate a million times. Hey, just do it! (Do I have to pester you?) Consider finding someone who can implement some (or all) of your marketing techniques for you, so you can focus on your core competencies, the unique gifts you bring to the world.

I’d love to hear your thoughts. Where do you feel you need to shake up your marketing model?

8 comments for now

Category: Internet & Social Media Marketing, Marketing, Rethinking Your Business

David Newman’s New Book – Is It For You?

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Strap on your rocket shoes, because David Newman’s book, Do It! Marketing, is going to jet-propel you into marketing orbit. He gives you insider information on how to be perceived as a thought-leading expert and the only choice your customers will want to make, by giving you check lists and smart questions to help you position your business as the stand-out-from-the-crowd leader.

If your marketing isn’t bringing you the best customers possible, you are now empowered to make the changes necessary to kick start your business to the next level of success. In this practical book, David outlines 77 crucial strategic pieces of the marketing and sales puzzle. All those mistakes you made already? David helps you to fix them. All those mistakes you could be making in the future? Avoid them, bypass them, skip them entirely.

David’s step-by-step approach helps you to be certain that you didn’t miss anything important, and that you’re building your marketing and sales system on a firm foundation. It’s like a premier marketing and sales course delivered easily to you chapter by chapter.

He doesn’t sugar-coat things; he tells it like it really, truly is. That’s essential, because the last thing you need when building a business is to have sunshine pumped up your nose by rah-rah authors who never get past the surface layer. David will inspire and motivate you, no doubt, but he does it with bucket loads of solid advice and deep exercises that are imperative to marketing and sales success (my favorite is Don’t Fall into the Same-O Lame-O Trap!).

Each of the 77 chapters is an easy read and the exercises are concrete. If you did one chapter a day for 77 days, your business would be at a whole new level in just a few months. That’s a future worth investing in.

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Category: Marketing

Successful Businesses Start with a Single Moment – What’s Yours?

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Did you ever look back and realize you had a major turning point, a single moment in time when your life changed completely?

I Had Three Defining Moments as a Small Business Owner

Here’s a photo that a college roommate took of me in the early 1980s. I got to watch her set up the lights, and print the photo for her photography class assignment. From that day forward, I fell in love with photography. That was my defining moment #1.

The month after I graduated college, I opened my photography studio and ran it for 12 years…my first successful small business!

Moment #2

I remember the second single defining moment: December 24, 1998. I had gotten married a few years earlier and sold my wedding photography business so that I could spend my weekends with my new husband, not watching other people get married.

After selling my photography studio, I had started a successful website in 1996. But after running it for nearly three years, I yearned to go in another direction and have more impact in people’s lives. But I didn’t know what that direction was! Like many before me, I sat around and waited for a billboard to fall out of the sky, telling me what to do next. After two years of waiting, there still hadn’t been a billboard. (Surprise!) I was frustrated and didn’t know what to do next.

On Christmas Eve 1998, I was home wrapping presents and watching Oprah. Gary Zukav was the guest and he was talking about finding your authentic power and following your soul’s path. Oprah, being very practical, asked, “How do you know what your soul’s path is?” (My question exactly!)

Then Gary Zukav said two words that changed my life: “Try Something.”

His premise, which works like a charm, was that just sitting around thinking about what you should be doing wasn’t going to get you any answers. Instead, you had to get out into the world and try something…and then watch whether doors opened or not. If doors opened, keep walking in that same direction. Simple!

And it worked. I moved my direction to more coaching, consulting and teaching small business owners, and sold my website to a colleague.

Moment #3

March 16, 2001. I had been working as the International Director of Education for a software company (and running my own business part-time on evenings and weekend). Lots of changes were happening in the software company, and most were not good changes. When I started with this company in 1996, I was employee #21, and we were fueled by coffee and entrepreneurial spirit.

Five years later, we had blossomed to 250 employees and we trudged along like a typical corporate dinosaur. We had lost our entrepreneurial mojo and I hated working there.

I can remember clearly that it was a Friday afternoon. I had left work and was sitting in the parking lot, trying to calm and center myself before driving the long commute home. The job I had once loved, I now hated. I was so much happier doing my small business consulting work and wanted to do it full time.

I remember calling my husband on my cell phone, and asking the big question, “Do you mind if I quit my job on Monday?”

Of course, the answer was “Do it!” and I’ve been happy ever since. The best news was that six years later, my husband quit his job and we’ve been business partners in Passion For Business for the past seven years. 🙂

Your Single Defining Moment

What about you? Was there a single moment you can remember that changed your business trajectory forever? Please, share you story!

2 comments for now

Category: Business Strategy & Planning

The Real Secret to Higher Profits

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Every teacher, mentor and guru promises to help you get big profits.

Let me short-cut the secret for you:

  • Take your talent and add a dash of passion for owning your own business.
  • Then practice your talent and your business skills, over and over again, until you gain mastery of both.
  • Create a smart plan for growth and then take consistent action to implement the plan.
  • If you have an area where you’re weak, learn how to do it, find a partner with those skills, or outsource that work.
  • Your mentor can teach you the skills, but only YOU can provide the talent, the passion, the mastery, the plan and the implementation.
  • People may inspire you, but no one will motivate you for long; you must motivate yourself…every single day.

That’s it, folks, the “secret” to a successful business. I’ve been a small business owner for 32 years and I know hundreds of other small business owners. And we all say the same thing: there is no silver bullet to building a small business. It takes hard work and dedication.


2 comments for now

Category: Marketing, Running a Strong & Efficient Business