Many small business owners say they “hate” marketing. How can that be? Without marketing, a small business will fail.
Here’s my analogy: Marketing is like diapers.
No one leaps for joy at the prospect of changing the baby’s diapers, but everyone wants a healthy, happy baby, so they do the work they dislike because they want the outcome they desire.
Well, marketing is like diapers in the small business world. You must do marketing so that people can learn about your products and services. Some people love to do marketing: they see it as creative and challenging. But many dislike doing it… hate doing it…for various reasons. Keeping your mind focused on the goal of success, you will do whatever needs to be done, instead of resisting it.
In the world of coaching, when we hear a statement that doesn’t quite feel right, we coach our clients by asking clarifying questions, trying to get to the core of the situation. With clarity comes understanding. With understanding comes release of resistance and “stuckness.”
Let’s get clarity:
- Do you feel marketing is sleazy? Some people are concerned that they’ll appear manipulative or slimy if they do marketing, and be perceived as a used-car salesman. Now be truthful: is that really likely that your audience will think that way about you? You are a smart, savvy person. As a consumer yourself, you know which types of marketing you hate to receive, and as a business owner you simply won’t do any technique that makes you feel annoyed or distressed. Trust your gut: if you are turned off by a specific marketing technique, your audience probably is, too. Simply don’t use those techniques.
- Are you uncomfortable with marketing? Sometimes people say they “hate” something when in reality they either don’t understand it, are confused by it, or feel they don’t know enough about it. Once you create your marketing plan, go ahead and take a class or buy a book on the specific marketing techniques you will be using. Every small step you take to learning more about your chosen marketing techniques — even 15 minutes a day — helps lead you away from confusion and more towards competency.
- Are you overwhelmed by the marketing choices? At my last count, there are 29 traditional marketing techniques and an additional 40 internet marketing techniques. No wonder you are confused! How do you choose among so many? This is where a strong marketing plan comes into play. A marketing plan takes you through the process of strategically choosing the right marketing techniques based on your audience and your message.
- Are you overwhelmed by the amount of work? Marketing can be very time-consuming. Consider that among the 70 or more marketing techniques available, there are some that take a small amount of time, but yield big results. Still, if you do not have the time to do your own marketing, find a virtual assistant who can take over some of the marketing tasks for you. If you can’t afford a VA, choose marketing techniques that fit your budget and your lifestyle.
As they say, action alleviates anxiety. If you are feeling stressed about your marketing, get your marketing plan in place, learn about your chosen marketing techniques, and trust your gut that you’ll know if the yuck-factor makes you shy away from certain marketing practices.