Marketing Smarts Newsletter - August 25, 2011
    • Baby Steps
    • Strategy and Implementation - A Tasty Combination
    • 9 Ways to Market Your Small or Medium Business Online

Oh my goodness!  You should have seen me this morning when I was walking on the levee that keeps the San Francisco Bay from flooding the entire Peninsula.  I did a little dance of joy yesterday morning.  Luckily, the few people out there ignored me. 

It was a sight.  Lately, I've been taking my Blackberry with me and reading articles while I'm walking.  Yes, I should enjoy the scenery but it's been almost a year, doing it twice a week.  I needed to make the time go faster.

So, reading marketing articles gets me so inspired and full of info that I can share with you.  The best article I read yesterday morning was about small movements and refining your marketing measurement. The idea in baseball is in order to win, you can't live on a diet of home runs alone.   Every time a player is at bat, his only job is to get to 1st plate. And, then each subsequent player is to get on base, until they're loaded and they start coming home and scoring.  The conclusion was doing baby steps in order to win.  Wow!  I saw it more broadly than just looking at marketing ROI (return on investment).   Small steps applies to the entire process of marketing and sales!  What a great reminder.  Baby steps. 

If you cook, you especially know what I mean.  You can't throw everything in the pot and expect it to taste great.  So, why do we expect that of our business?  Of our marketing?  Baby steps are following up on the business card you got from last night's networking event or calling the one company you really want as a client or sending an email to a past client to say "hi."

It's all about taking little steps in a tottery order (it's not always a straight line or perfectly linear) with the goal of taking a big step.  When you first learned anything, did you master it right away?  Not likely.   It took practice and dedication.  Give yourself a break.  Take baby steps to marketing your business and build a little at a time.

Good Marketing,
Anne Kenney
Chief Wrangler

Strategy and Implementation - A Tasty Combination
Should you think first or do first?

Which came first?  Strategy or implementation? 
Let me define strategy.  Webster's dictionary says:

2 a : a careful plan or method : a clever stratagem b : the art of devising or employing plans or stratagems toward a goal

Oh, criminey.  Now, I have to define stratagem.
1a : an artifice or trick in war for deceiving and outwitting the enemy b : a cleverly contrived trick or scheme for gaining an end
2: skill in ruses or trickery

Oh, jeez.  That didn't work like I planned. I disagree with Webster's characterization of trickery and ruse because a strategy is none of that.  It's a plan with an outcome in mind. 

So, which came first?  Some would say strategy.   But, that's not always true is it?  Very few businesses have a full-blown or any business plan before they have their first customer.

You can conceptualize your company but you only really know if it's a go when you start getting customers.  Yet, implementation with no strategy is a recipe for disaster. 

So, let's call it a draw like the chicken and the egg.  Both are tasty and work well together.  Strategy and implementation do well together, too.  And, they feed off of each other.  Every time you implement something, you can refine your strategy.  Writing this newsletter is a good example of learning as a I implement.

For instance, I wrote an article on editing and using wrong words and then didn't listen my own advice.  Another lesson was adding a table of contents at the top which I didn't with my first version.  Every time I implement, I'm thinking about my strategy of giving great, helpful information...of being a valued resource to readers.  So, what's your intention?

When You Develop A Lead Generation Strategy for Your Business, Ask Yourself These:

  1. What do you want your customers to perceive you as?
  2. What do you want to give them that they don't know they need?
  3. How do you plan to walk your customers through your sales process?  What baby steps do they have to take and what's the first baby step they can take with you?
If You Are Going To Implement and Engineer Backwards, Ask Yourself These:

  1. What can I give that valuable to my clients or prospects?
  2. What's the best way to reach them?
  3. Do I have a list that I can start communicating with right away?
Get cracking!

9 Ways to Market Your Small or Medium Business Online
Read and learn 9 ways to marketing your business online.  The author recommends doing a combination of these.  I recommend picking 2 or 3 to start with and work your way up.  Don't overwhelm yourself and your resource.

From the author:

"Small business marketing used to mean direct mailings, flyers, and postcards listing the latest deals, promotions and specials. As a kid, I would earn a nickel for every envelope I stuffed for my father’s insurance business and a few extra dollars if I sorted them by ZIP code before I gave them to him. I have a feeling today’s kids aren’t earning their extra change that way."

"Because the Internet has changed all that. Today marketing your small business means doing things to help you gain visibility on the Web. It’s about reaching real-life customers through online portals and giving them a reason to come visit you in store. Below are 9 ways small business owners can market their businesses online. Ideally, you’re ..."

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