It’s the first day of school you are standing there ready to enter the classroom, your palms are a little clammy, your heart is racing, and you are worried about what everyone is going to think about you and what you have to say. The stress is palpable and the turmoil within is beginning to show itself. You take a deep breath, in your mind you say, “ok it’s gone time”, you open the door and 35 students walk into your classroom.
On the board, you have the seating chart already established and a list of five tasks for everyone to begin upon entering the room. You instruct the class “on the board you will see where you are to sit and what the expectations are to begin the class.”
When the class gets settled into their seats and begins the list of five tasks you can begin taking attendance for your first day of school. After the first five to eight minutes of the class has passed, you ask the class to finish up what they are doing, because in 60 seconds you need their attention.
After 10 seconds, you, with a soft voice let the class know there are 10 seconds till you need their attention. “3–2–1, ok I need you to stop, and let me see your eyes.”
Why do I tell you about how I begin my first day of school? How is it different from the last day of school? What does school have to do with starting, maintaining, and being successful in business and marketing?
I began every class the same way, it didn’t matter what I was teaching, what age I was teaching, or how long I had been teaching them. We set people up for success based on how well we prepare, and consistency. My class always knew what to expect when they came into class, there was little wasted time and energy in my class. If I altered my routine during the year the students would notice it and ask me why the change.
They began to enjoy the routine and predictability of my class. There are times that change is good in our lives. At times in my class, this could look like a new seating arrangement. When I did this there were reasons I would make the change, and I always had a mixed reaction from the class. Some didn’t like the new assignment because they didn’t get to sit next to their friends anymore, and others liked it because they didn’t have to sit next to a person they didn’t like. As the leader of the class, I had to keep the future success of the classroom as my priority.
As a business owner, you want to set your business up for success, and you also will keep the success of your business as your priority. When I created a routine for my classroom a business owner needs a process for success. That process is through marketing. There are different ways that we can market, just like in a classroom we have can change the seating arrangement when needed, a marketing plan can also go through different changes.
Before the digital revolution the Yellow Pages, television, and radio ads were the main ways businesses would market to themselves. If you were a small business owner most of the time you didn’t have the budget to market on the television, so you only had a radio and the Yellow Pages.
The expense of the radio ad might even be out of the budget for the business, what you would do then is the name your company based on the alphabetical location in the Yellow Pages. For a small business to successfully market your business it was difficult to do without spending a large portion of your profits.
What is the difference between then vs. now? After the digital revolution there became so many more ways to influence your potential customer base. You have the three from back in the day, but now you have many other ways to market to your customers. With the advent of social media marketing, your business has never been easier and more accessible. The public now has the expectation to have everything at their fingertips.
With this accessibility, there are also problems that arise. The customers can research and see how other customers felt about the service you provided. They can also compare multiple companies’ prices within minutes. I can do a Google search and find a quick list of plumbers that provide basically the same quality and service in my area.
So how do you set yourselves apart from the rest of the competition? You can set yourself apart by the quality of your business website, how your website has been optimized for search engine results (SEO–Search Engine Optimization), and the customer reviews that are left by the people you have worked with. Also, you can rest assured that you hire a professional company such as BizMilk to help you.
Setting Your Company Up for Success
To make sure you can eliminate the complications make sure your marketing your company benefits vs. the features. Features are what your company does, and the customer must create the value of that in their mind.
When you explain the benefits, you are telling your customers what sets you apart from the rest and why they should choose you over your competition. Like the routine, a successful teacher has, you as a business need to establish a plan of action to draw future leads to your website or business doors.
What Comes Next
When you are looking to take the next step in marketing your business you can hire a person to handle all the complexities that are involved with marketing, or you can hire a marketing firm. My personal view is that hiring a firm makes the most sense, because with a single person that does all the work for you, you still have to pay them, pay taxes, provide benefits, and this person comes with only one person’s experience.
Whereas with a marketing firm, you get an entire team along with their ideas and experience. You also don’t have to provide any benefits besides the fee that the firm charges you.
All these things will ultimately help you set yourself above the competition. The market has changed, and you need to grow and change with it. That is why it is so important to find a team that has the experience that your business needs. Do your research and find the right match for continued growth and possibilities.