Market For The Year You’re Doing Business
Most small business owners aren’t marketing in the year in which they’re operating — words of wisdom from online marketing guru and venture capitalist, Gary Vaynerchuk.
The same goes for newspaper advertising. Browse through your local daily and you’ll notice that it’s mostly editorial. Gone are the days when ads balanced out the news. Papers are now promoting their online marketing and SEO services. That’s because we’re accessing our news online and in real time. So why would we wait 24 hours for it to arrive on our doorstep? And why would we invest our advertising dollars in redundant media?
Change Is Hard
To be fair, the online marketing landscape is changing so quickly and radically that it’s hard for many small business owners to keep up.
Those I talk to feel like they’ve got one foot on the dock and the other in the boat. They know they’re not spending their advertising dollars as effectively as they could be, but at the same it’s easier to stick with what they know.
It used to be that print brochures and newspaper ads, radio spots and ad mail were the go-to media. And the bulk of many annual marketing spends were directed by commissioned media reps who push contracts across the desk — or coffee-shop table — to be signed without a spec of strategic planning.
The result is shotgun marketing. The bang could be big but short-lived. The reach was wide and broadly targeted. But the disconnect with your consumer is real. So one must do this repeatedly to convince a consumer to engage. Traditional media makes it so much harder to convert a cold lead into an engaged consumer.
Change Is Good
Conversely, if your potential customer is browsing online to find a solution that fits their needs, effective targeting can mean they’re only a click or two away from landing on your website and providing you with their email address. Just like that a cold lead converts into a valuable prospect and you build your business.
Cost-wise, it’s hard to print anything – from business cards to billboard – without spending hundreds if not thousands of dollars. If you’re not aware of how much you can buy in online ads and social media with the same amount of money, you’d be smart to find out.
Change Is Constant
Take some advice from someone who started her career BEFORE computers and mobile devices – at work and at home. Never stop learning and exploring.
Smart business owners understand the value of hiring marketing professional — or virtual assistant — to help navigate the options, develop strategy and roll out tactics that cost less and target better. User analytics will prove where your money is best spent.
So change is here. Start marketing for today!
Photo: Captured this front window scene from inside an eclectic shop called Dots & Loops, Lunenburg, Nova Scotia