The World’s Biggest Small Business Marketing Myth

There is a certain level of naiveté and optimism that comes with being a small business entrepreneur. The dream of being one’s own boss and achieving success requires confidence, risk taking, and a little bit of insanity.

Having clear judgment and the ability to see the big picture is essential to bringing balance and creating a thriving business. However, we often get in our own way with preconceived notions and ideas about marketing which are untrue and lead to less than desirable results.

A prime example of this is the belief that one can create “perfect” marketing for their business. This attitude is the biggest small business marketing myth. There is no such thing as perfect marketing!

Many entrepreneurs spend countless and unnecessary hours editing and tweaking their marketing materials to look perfect. They lose sight of the fact that marketing should be, first and foremost, effective. Does it work is always more important than how many kudos and awards it may receive.

Looking to create perfection in marketing can be a fatal approach to take for many reasons. Here are a few things to consider:

First, striving to create perfect marketing creates missed opportunities. It eats up a lot of time and timing is critical. Successful marketing only happens when your message meets the moment of need while the prospect is searching for your product or service. If your message is not in the marketplace, how are they going to select you over your competitor?

The opportunity cost of missing this moment is huge for you and fortunate for your competitor. You not only missed the sale, but that customer may never consider you again because they have now experienced your competitor’s product or service. People do business with people they know. If your competitor establishes the relationship first, you will be required to fight harder to win them over to your side. This will cost you a great deal of time and money in the long run.

Second, people really don’t care about your marketing materials. When they are ready to buy, a prospect only wants information on your product or service. They want to be convinced of why it would be the best choice for them. They are apathetic about the layout, color, type font, and photo position of your brochure. They only want quality information that helps them make a confident decision not perfect design.

Remember, most of the time your marketing is an interruption to their day. It’s a common belief that the average person is exposed to over 3,000 marketing messages each day. How many of those are wanted intrusions and how many are welcome offers? The quality and the approach of the message are much more important than the details of the design and delivery.

Third, you are not marketing to yourself. Too often, small business marketing is done to satisfy the entrepreneur who created it and not the prospect or customer. The owner of a business will design marketing materials to satisfy their desires. When this happens, the message is skewed to what the owner prefers and the customer’s needs and wants are ignored.

The marketing ends up being an exercise in ego for the business owner rather than a compelling message that gets the prospect to part with their money. Designing your marketing to satisfy yourself rarely brings in business. Get to know what your prospects and clients are looking for and develop to those wants and needs.

And lastly, marketing by nature is a game of failure. It’s impossible to be perfect. Not all of your marketing strategies and tactics will work for any number of reasons.

The only way to be sure of your efforts is to develop a testing mentality. This approach is simply putting to a test two different marketing approaches and quantifying the results. These results will reveal what really works and which message your market is willing to act upon.

This requires planning and patience but is a much more reliable indicator than going with your gut instincts. Testing will lead you to the closest you’ll come to creating perfect marketing because the market has determined your approach.

5 Steps to Massive Profits – A Business Marketing Tip

Here’s a business marketing tip to gain maximum profit from
any product or service in your business marketing lineup,
and how you will gain extreme profits when you follow these
5 simple, LAZY steps;

1. Look not at what you are offering through your business
marketing efforts – look at WHO WILL BUY your
product/service. Make a picture of your ‘typical buyer’ –
who they are, their age, what they like to do, etc.

This is often known as the ‘target market prospect’, yet,
the more detailed you define this ‘target’ in your business
marketing, the better.

I’ve even gone to the point of giving this ‘target market’
person a name and put a picture up on my computer monitor
(find a ‘friendly face’ on the Internet somewhere and ‘tag’
it as your target market prospect) – get your business
marketing centered around every aspect of your target – the
more you know them, the easier it is to chat about what they
need.

2. Develop a list of your target market prospect’s likes and
dislikes as it would relate to a product/service similar to
yours. (You’ll get a ‘third party’ look at your competition,
as well as some inside looks at their business marketing
efforts.)

Consider some questions they would have, or some typical
objections to buying this similar product/service (this may
come from your previous research, or you may have to simply
do some).

One way to personalize the business marketing research of
your ‘target market prospect’ is to ‘role play’ – think
about your prospect as a good friend that you are having a
picnic with (or even a co-worker at the water cooler, etc.)
and in passing, your friend brings up that ‘similar’
product/service.

What do they say about it?

What are their questions/concerns?

Is there a ‘running joke’ about the competition’s
product/service that defines a hole in their business
marketing? (i.e., “Did you hear about the lady that used
X?”)

All these things need to be addressed, and documented.

Let your mind be creative and wander, but keep it to a time
limit – about 15-20 minutes per business marketing ‘play’
session. Think of nothing but this ‘conversation’ during
this creative (often fun) time.

It might even be helpful for you to say everything that
comes to mind out loud during these business marketing
planning sessions(as silly as that sounds, it works…) and
record it, as some of the best business marketing ideas get
overlooked when you are trying to write them down quickly.

Listening back for those ‘nuggets’ might even trigger other
‘bits of business marketing gold’ for you to work with.

3. Figure out how your product/service and business
marketing plan is similar, yet different than the
competition. Just how does your solution overcome all the
questions, concerns and yes, even ‘jokes’ from your target?

If you can’t answer these questions for yourself, how would
you expect to answer them from your prospect?

The beautiful part about this business marketing exercise is
that, if you go through it with commitment, you will already
know the answers to the prospect’s questions BEFORE they ask
them – which quickly eliminates any fears you might have
about talking with them.

4. Continue this simple exercise – every couple days for a
week or so. Giving 15-20 minutes of serious thought to your
business marketing plan and role playing every couple days
will stimulate your conscious mind, as well as keep your
unconscious mind actively thinking about it.

You’ll be surprised at the outcome of taking these steps
seriously.

But be forewarned – you will very likely have a very
different outlook about your prospect after one week of this
simple, yet extremely effective business marketing, ‘target
market’ finding tool!

You will know them as well as you know yourself, so you will
be able to talk with them about things quickly, simply and
with the best, consistent results of your business marketing
efforts.

5. Now, take a look at your product/service and business
marketing plan – through the prospect’s eyes (now that you
can clearly see through them…)

Does it fit your prospect’s needs?

Does it answer their questions and eliminate their fears?

Is it priced right for your target prospect?

Is there a market for your product/service other than your
personalized target market prospect? (This step is vital as
a ‘reality check” – and one that many business marketing
planners miss)

When you follow these five steps faithfully, you will have
credibility, knowledge and successful long-term
relationships with your customers (who used to be simply
‘target market prospects’ before you understood the power of
this business marketing tip!).