I hear a lot of business owners complaining, wishing, whining and hoping for clients but they are unwilling to change their habits and mindset about how they market and sell their craft. Marketing is not something you do when you have no clients. Its one of the core activities necessary for growing a profitable business and I would go as far as to say that with strong marketing and selling skills, you’d be able to grow a business that has no unique selling proposition. Just take a look around you, look at some of the purchases you’ve made recently. They may not be the best but they were good at getting you to buy from them.
If you really want more clients, then you need to prioritise your marketing. Any activity you engage in online or offline should be aligned to this aim. This is the ONLY way of getting new clients. Guaranteed. I’m not saying it is easy. Its not, but you need to do it if you want to stay in business.
So what can you do to prioritise marketing?
There are no hard and fast rules but I believe marketing is something that should always be running in the background. As a rule of thumb, I tell struggling businesses to spend at least 50% or more of their time marketing to build up the necessary momentum.
The way I do this is to block out time every week focusing purely on how to reach new audiences in the most cost and time effective manner. For this reason, I live by a strict schedule. Every activity is scheduled in. My family thinks I’m a bit nuts but it works for me so I stick to it. If I don’t schedule stuff in my diary, live just happens and the business and marketing gets side-lined.
With all the distractions and demands on our time, you really need to uncompromisingly block out this time. Time when you unplug and focus purely on how to grow your business.
Prioritising your time and efforts so that marketing is ticking away day in day out won’t happen by chance but it is the only way of ensuring a steady inflow of clients.
So what is the best way to market your business?
There are a millions and one ways of marketing your business and I’ve found that unless you find a way that is authentic and true to your values and strengths, you’ll struggle to implement the advice you’ve been given.
So take a look at what you’ve done in the past and the ways you’ve gotten your clients. These worked in the past and may probably work for you again so schedule these in for starters.
Then schedule in some new innovative ways that you haven’t tried in the past. These will be a bit more challenging but commit to learning the necessary skills or getting the necessary help to give it a good go. Schedule these in as well.
One of the easier ways I’ve found is to develop a network of collaborations with other businesses in non-competing and complimentary businesses. They will be great referral sources of new clients.
Pick six or more core activities that will form the foundation of how you consistently get new clients and prioritise these activities.
Try these and let me know how you get on. Please leave a comment and lets start a conversation, its always great to hear back from you :-).
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