Another do-it-yourselfer named their business without first checking Federal trademark registrations to see if it was available. Now, they have a cease-and-desist letter to deal with.
Another do-it-yourselfer created their logo using PowerPoint and felt it looked “good enough to get by.” Now, their competitors are snickering behind their back.
Another do-it-yourselfer just launched their website with placeholder content, broken links, poorly optimized photos, and typos. Now, their business prospects aren’t taking them seriously.
Another do-it-yourselfer took a “build-it-and-they-will come” attitude to launching their early-stage business. Now, they have no proof of concept and can’t find investors.
Another do-it-yourselfer used freeware to cut corners instead of purchasing popular business apps. Now they are having difficulty sharing files.
Another do-it-yourselfer hired their neighbor’s college kid to help them get by with their social media. Now, they’re wondering why people aren’t clicking.
Another do-it-yourselfer decided that marketing should be viewed only as an expense, and doing it cheaply really won’t hurt them. Now, they’re wondering why they can’t gain any market traction.
Another do-it-yourselfer forgot that first impressions are nearly impossible to overcome. Now, they’re losing customers before they get them.
Another do-it-yourselfer undervalued themselves and, instead of hiring a trained and efficient professional for vital tasks, stopped using their time to build relationships and grow their business. Now, they’re weighing their bankruptcy options.
Don’t be just another do-it-yourselfer.
You cannot do it all and do it all well.
I certainly can’t.
I don’t do my taxes. I hire an accountant.
I don’t do wiring. I hire an electrician.
I don’t drop trees. I hire a yard service.
I don’t cut my own hair. I go to a barber.
Instead, I try to spend my time doing what I do best to make money and hire seasoned professionals to help with the rest.
Why aren’t you?
The bankruptcy courts are full of great ideas that were undermined by ineffective branding and promotion. Build it and they will come? No, they won’t. Not unless you make them really want to. Or, better yet, need to.
You seem to be great at what you do. You have a terrific product. Your media coverage has been impressive. You’ve been serving the industry for decades. But, what does it mean to your customers? What’s in it for me?
Spring is a season of renewal and rejuvenation. So, shake off the rust, get out the broom and add some polish to your business. Here are a few things you should consider at least once a year to tidy up your marketing.
If you’re looking to create a new brand identity or enhance your current one, expect to be deeply involved, regularly challenged and perhaps a bit frustrated. It surely won’t happen overnight. But your patience will certainly pay off.
As the calendar year winds down, it always a good idea to take a step back to revisit and refresh your marketing. Your business will be better off by doing so. But, don’t go overboard and be too disruptive.
We’ve collected a number of the more salient points from our blog and are presenting them as a marketing reality check list. A good number of these apply to new or small businesses. But you’ll also find that some of the largest corporations in the world make many of the same missteps.