— March 15, 2019
I’ve been in business for over 40 years, and over the last 18, 20 years I’ve been working in marketing other companies to their perfect clients. One of the first questions I ask them is, “Who is your perfect audience?” Now, I get one of two different answers. It’s either, “I can identify that person,” or somebody says, “Everyone.” Now, the predictor of success is usually the person who has a clearcut idea of who their audience is and what they want is probably going to be more successful than somebody who says, “Everyone.” Yeah. Who wouldn’t like to sell everything to everyone? But would you try to sell dog food to a cat owner? No. But the logic of those people is, “Well, they’re pet lovers, and maybe they’ll get a dog somebody.” Right? That’s not very targeted. It’s not very efficient.
I’ve given a lot of speeches to a lot of groups. The ones that have impressed me a lot are Rotary Clubs. They have a four-way test that they do at the beginning of every single meeting.
Here are the four questions they ask:
- !s it the truth?
- Is it fair to all concerned?
- Will it build good will and better friendships?
- Will it be beneficial to all concerned?
So, they ask those four questions as part of the overall core mission. Today, I’m going to do kind of the same thing, but from a marketing standpoint, and I’m going to ask you some questions.
I want you to think of marketing as an expense. I don’t care whether you’re spending money or you’re spending time; it is always an investment. It’s an expense that should reap a reward, which means that marketing should have measurable results. Most importantly, your marketing should be aligned to your business goals.
I have five main questions that should help you focus on this overarching big picture question…. Are you asking yourself all the time, “The reason I’m doing this is …”? Does it have a purpose? That’s the question you should be asking yourself. If you’re doing something in marketing, does it have a purpose?
1. What is The Desired Marketing Goal?
Here’s question number one. What is the desired marketing goal of what you’re doing? It could be a lot of different things, but let’s narrow it down to three.
- Is it there to grow your audience?
- Is it there to sell more products?
- Is it something that’s gonna help me save time or money?
When you’re doing an activity in marketing, what is the desired goal of that? The second question you have to ask yourself is is it achievable? That’s a tough question to answer, but are you gonna sell some or a ton, or do you know? Is there a goal in mind? What is your desired goal, as far as is it achievable?
2. Is It Achievable?
If I sell X amount of packages or make X amount of dollars, what will it do to my business? That’s what you’ve gotta ask. Will it take more time? Will it cost more resources? One of the biggest things that kills businesses is cash flow. If they sell too much, they can’t afford to deliver the product. Then the demand goes down. So, do you have a plan in place ensuring it is achievable? The last part of this piece is, what happens if I fall short? Do I have a contingency plan? Where am I headed with this?
3. Is There A Smarter Way To Do This?
Let’s move on to the third question. Is there a smarter way to do this? Is there a more complete way to do what I’m trying to achieve? In other words, do I have a package of software? Do I have a suite of services that could actually fulfill this better than if I kind of piecemealed it out? Should it be broken down into smaller tasks? Are you trying to bite off more than you can chew at one time? Does it make sense to maybe break it down into smaller, achievable goals? Taking it back to the other two, does it reach the desired marketing goal, and is it achievable? The last piece of this is, am I creating just a to-do, or am I creating an asset? The difference is this: a to-do is something that you just have to get done, and an asset is something that can be used over, and over, and over again. Are you writing a blog as a to-do? Are you writing a blog as an asset? Could it be used as a podcast? Can it be used in an eBook? What are you doing in marketing that you can use over, and over, and over again?
4. Who Should Do This?
The next question you want to ask yourself is, should I be doing this myself, or should I pay somebody to do it? In other words, you have to ask yourself, is investing the time going to benefit you, or is investing the money going to benefit you? Remember, in the beginning I said that marketing is an expense of either time or money. So, if you’re going to learn something by doing it yourself, then do it yourself. Or, what if you learned something by teaching somebody else to do it? Would that be a better way? Are you creating an asset that maybe you could teach more people to do it, so you could have more people doing something that could make your business money?
5. What Would Happen If I Did Not Do This?
The last piece of this is how can I make more money in the long run? Businesses tend to avoid paying other people, because they don’t want to spend the money, but maybe what you’re actually doing is being penny wise and pound foolish. You might be missing out on the opportunity to create something that’s repeatable and scalable by getting somebody else to do it and then having more opportunity to sell more of what it is that you’re trying to achieve.
The last piece of this puzzle is what would happen if I don’t do it? Let’s go back to that question, is this core to your business? Is this going to take you further in your overall goals? If not, why are you doing it?
If I DON’T do this, would I lose income, or would I lose influence? Sometimes we do things out of pride, rather than profit. That’s one of those kind of things where you have to decide, is the pride the thing that you’re trying to achieve, or is the profit the thing you’re trying to achieve? They don’t always work hand-in-glove. Sometimes they do, but you have to look at that. Then, the last piece of this puzzle is, could I find more time for other tasks if I don’t do it? Am I basically holding myself back from achieving everything I want in my business, because I’m performing something that isn’t giving me those three things? It’s not giving me time or money. It’s not giving me measurable results, and it’s not aligned to my business goals. So, you have to make sure that you’re clear on that. Otherwise, don’t do it. Move onto something else.
So, ask yourself these questions:
- What is the main purpose of this activity? Is it core to my business?
- Is it urgent and realistic?
- Is it the best way for me to achieve the desired results I’m trying to?
- Does it make good financial business sense?
- What else could I or should I be doing? What is this taking me away from?
So, are you asking yourself, “The reason I’m doing this is …”? If you can’t answer that question with a core, definitive answer, then maybe you should reevaluate what it is that you’re trying to achieve and try another way.
I would love to hear your thoughts on this. Comment below and share your thoughts, ideas or questions about showing the concepts presented. Have you had to overcome any of the presented concepts? What worked and what did not live up to expectations? Do you have any ideas or advice you could share?