Consider this: There’s a person who wants to lose 50 pounds. So he makes a goal to workout 5 days a week and modify his diet. He starts out strong, fulfilling every one of his workout & diet goals. A month in he’s starting to see a little progress, but suddenly his life becomes very busy and he starts to slack, four days at the gym and a candy bar every few days.
Two months into his plan he’s going to the gym twice a week and spending half the time he had been. He’s entirely quit his diet plan and hopes that this is enough to reach his 50 pounds lost goal. He continues this plan for 2 more months, always looking and hoping to see the number on the scales continue to drop.
You know this is ridiculous and this guy needs a reality check. The thing is you do the very same thing with marketing. You have the goal to grow a business and while you expect to stay small for the first little while you want your business to thrive. You start strong, running ads, posting on social media, cold calling, building a website, and growing an email list. You have reasonable expectations, that it will take some time to see growth. But it doesn’t take long, the work starts to come in, you’re busy managing your team and the work, ensuring that all is going smoothly and your customers are happy.
Suddenly, you’re only posting on social media when you have a minute to put two thoughts together, which isn’t often. The website is neglected, becoming outdated. There’s no cold calling or networking. Yet you still expect to see results and growth from our sporadic marketing efforts. Your big goals are still attainable, you think.
Then the work starts to taper off and you’re left scrambling to pick up the marketing that should have been going consistently when you were busy. You experience the anxiety that comes with less work than you hoped. The curve of growth starts to flatten before the lag of the marketing catches up and the cycle begins again.
There is always a lag with marketing, so when you are the busiest is when you must continue to market consistently to keep the slow season that’s coming from becoming too severe and your business failing.
According to Forbes, some of the top reasons that small businesses fail are:
- Poor planning & execution of goals and vision
- Inconsistent marketing
- Inability to adapt to market conditions.
- Lack of consistency in follow-up
It’s a well-known belief that there is an economic down-turn coming. How severe? No one knows. Many of you are very busy right now, but preparation for a down-turn is essential to the survival of your business. This is not a scare tactic, it’s a reality check.
Here are 3 ways to begin marketing consistently right away:
Set aside 1 hour each week to create content (social media, blog, email, etc). The beautiful thing about content is that it can be repurposed with modifications to fit each platform. Write a longer piece of content for your blog, then send it as an email. Take portions of the blog post and create social media posts. Repurposing content will help to ease the mental pressure of coming up with a dozen separate pieces of content each week.
Effective marketing is easily repeatable and memorable. Keep it simple. This will help your ideal customer to remember you and remember the problem you solve.
Take time each quarter to strategize. Be very specific with your planning, the subject you’ll focus on each month or week. Creating content on the fly is nearly impossible and in the end you create from a place of stress, not offering the full amount of value to your audience.
Hire an internal marketing manager. This will take marketing off your plate and all you need to do is manage. This could work really well for your company if you have the finances to handle adding someone internally. You’ll have more control over exactly how you market. There will be one person dedicated to your business and it’s efforts in growth.
Hire a marketing company to manage it all (or a portion of it) for you. Once again, this will take marketing off your plate and all you need to do is manage. This option could work really well for you if you don’t have the resources for someone internally. Some marketing agencies will offer the flexibility to be as involved as you want, this way you can stay within your budget. A marketing agency understands the market and takes the time to research and offer various avenues of marketing that could work for you. They have a broader level of experience than an internal marketing manager, which could be beneficial.
Did you find this helpful? We’d love to hear your thoughts and what action you plan to take after reading this.
Do you have any questions about marketing? We’d love to hear them and discuss with you how to improve your marketing.