Small Business Marketing: Know Your Why

Why-150x150In a lively and stimulating meeting with a group of clients, one brave soul put forward a marketing idea he was planning and wanted some help with. What we all learned was that he hadn’t yet really taken the time to think through what he wanted to achieve from the activity itself, namely what his specific marketing goals are.

I don’t like to get too academic with marketing – though there are plenty of others who will – but I do like to know why I am doing what I am doing so I can measure results and tweak if required. I like to know what I hope to achieve by blogging, writing a regular newsletter and being an expert interviewee for others on their websites and for their clients.

My goal is always the same. I want you to visit my website and join my list so I can get into dialogue with you and have your permission to market to you until such time as you decide you want to work with me. Or just to have you read my writing if not.

That’s it. It’s really that simple. And boy does that simplicity help.

What is your most wanted action? Once you know that, then you can decide how to deliver the message in your marketing materials which gets your readers and visitors to take that action. And if it really is that simple, why do we complicate it so and lose sight of the goal?

There’s an awful lot of choice in life which generally we regard as a good thing, but is it – really?  I saw the delicious Ben Fogle on Room 101 expounding the rather tired old argument that more choice on TV with hundreds of channels doesn’t make for better TV. I’m not sure that’s true and it made him come over rather more as Ben Fogey than Ben Fogle.

It’s probably more about how we manage how much choice is available to us, and that’s down to not being distracted by too many shiny baubles and knowing your own mind. Picking and sticking to one marketing strategy until you have it working, tweaking little by little until you luck into your flow; that’s my recommendation.

Also you need to test and watch how the chosen strategy is working. Is it bringing you the results you desire? If not, why do you think that is? What can you tweak and test until you see your results improve satisfyingly? One thing at a time, mind. You don’t want to be testing too many things too often and confusing your clients and fans, followers and readers.

It may be necessary to start with a bit of a brainstorm. What is it you really want? What’s the best way you can think of now to achieve that result? Is there someone more knowledgeable than you who you could run your ideas past for their feedback?

So, now you have your goal and why are you doing it, what do you want the outcome to be?

Let’s imagine you want to build your list… how many on it now and how many more after a week or a month of doing your planned activity? Or if its clients or ebook sales, how many of those do you have now and does the marketing activity work to increase the numbers of either or both?

Know your goals. Measure your starting point. Put together a plan and go for it, by which I mean start doing those actions daily. And then let me know what you discover and how you get on. I want what you want, for your business to grow year on year by experimenting and measuring. But not by throwing yourself at anything and everything without knowing why.

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