Time is something that small business owners are always wishing they had more of.
To be a successful business balancing time, energy and money is always a big challenge. Undertaking marketing is important to get a business beyond survival and make it one that is thriving. Some businesses do minimal marketing which results in minimal sales, profits and business growth. Other businesses spend a lot of time, energy and money on marketing to improve their sales however they are not getting the return on their marketing effort.
So what’s going on?
My take is that there are three major reasons for why people don’t achieve a good return on their investment.
- Too many marketing options – it’s sometimes hard to make the right choice for your business at this time. What might work one year may have reduced impact the following year. Spending a small amount of your marketing budget getting advice from a professional marketer as to the most appropriate marketing activities to undertake can ensure you are heading in the right direction.
- Lots of one size fits all options and I include social media in this. There are too many people who believe that social media is the only sort of marketing you need to do. That is absolute rubbish. Social media can be helpful and effective but not in isolation. Unless your business is social media you need to do more. Marketing is like getting fit; it has to be done on a regular and consistent basis for the results to be noticeable and sustained.
- No evaluation, which leads to making the same mistakes over and over again. Marketing without monitoring and evaluation is pointless because it’s difficult to isolate what works and what doesn’t. You may be spending 80% of your marketing time doing things that only bring in 20% of your customers. Planning both the activities and evaluation means that your efforts will be in the areas that make the biggest impact.
The good news is that as businesses respond to challenging times they are looking for ways of doing things smarter. In my experience when businesses make contact with a marketing professional in the planning phase of their marketing, they actually save themselves a lot of time, money and grief and achieve more.