I am a member of the baby boomer generation. Admittedly I am on the tail end of this generational grouping but we did not grow up with the kind of technology that we have now. I have found that there is an interesting phenomenon going on with business owners that is crossing over the baby boomer, generation x and y categories. This phenomenon is that they have embraced or are embracing technology through just simply creating accounts or purchasing a website. As a business coach, I absolutely love seeing people make decisions to create positive change and even learning the how to when it comes to social media and website engagement. Interestingly enough though, just simply establishing a presence is only the first step in the process. It is great that the electronic world can find you, see who your friends are or even see what your interests are.
If you own a business, what message are you sending and who are you trying to appeal to? It is important to understand that the fundamentals of marketing has not changed. We must market our business using A-I-D-A. (Attention, Interest, Desire & Action). Being present and discoverable is one thing but it does not do you much good unless you get AIDA. Whether you are a small business marketing to prospects or a large corporation, this fundamental applies.
For some of you the internet or digital marketing landscape seems a bit overwhelming and intimidating. The pace of change in this digital revolution is hard to keep up with, even for those of us who have some acceptable base of knowledge and education. I would like to challenge everyone who is reading this blog to stop and see if you are driving your marketing or is your marketing driving you. Many business owners are guilty of allowing their business to drive them and therefore the success, or lack of it, instead of taking charge of what happens in their business. Since this is so prevalent it makes sense that when it comes to how business owners are trying to market in today’s digital age the same behaviors are trickling down to the manner in which they market their business.
Here are 3 questions that I would like for you to consider. If you can answer affirmatively to each of these then you are well on your way to creating the success (leads and engagement) that digital marketing can provide.
- How much time have you invested in gaining the knowledge that you need to possess to understand how to be relevant in the digital environment? This should be the first step but is often not taken until something has not worked (and a good deal of dollars wasted). Google is the leader in the digital marketplace and they place an ultimate value of “relevance” for your marketing compared to everyone else. Investing some time in educating yourself how to be relevant is critical.
- How much time have you invested in actually creating a strategy for your marketing? I mentioned AIDA earlier. What about your target market(s)? Doesn’t it make sense that will need a different message for different target markets as they have different needs? Which market are you going to penetrate first and what will be your strategy to touch them enough to gain their trust and interest? Marketing without a strategy is the equivalent to gambling, the odds of guessing a winning campaign are against you.
- How are you going to implement or execute your marketing strategy? Are you going to do this by yourself and if so, how many hours per week do you have allocated to execute your marketing? Remember, living in the digital age is a very public activity. Visitors to your social media and digital media sites can easily ascertain if you are consistent or not. When I visit a website that has not been updated in over 2 years, it causes me to exit the site quickly. If you are going to market your business digitally then you must make it a regular, consistent part of your business activities. If you do not have the time then delegate the strategy to someone who does.
The bottom line is that all things we do in our business must be strategic. Isn’t it interesting that you may be the best Doctor, Dentist, CPA, Roofer, Landscaper, etc. by investing a great deal of time educating yourself on how to deliver your service or product but when it comes to marketing yourself you continue to allow yourself to remain undereducated in how to actually reach those who need your services!
I realize that this message is direct. After all I am your business coach. The message may sting a little but when you achieve your goals the pain or discomfort of planning is always forgotten with success!