Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Think BIG and Grow Your Business BIG!

I preach to clients about building their marketing platforms. I say this all the time, "I walk my own talk." Nothing annoys anyone more than "do as I say not as I do." How am I supposed to convince a client (especially as a business owner) to market and promote their companies or books by building a strong marketing platform when I didn't bother to do it myself. It's like trying to sell food that tastes bad. You don't eat it so why should your prospective clients?

An investment in your marketing platform (and my platform consists of this blog, First Word newsletter, First Word radio, social media and website) costs a lot of money to get it done right. So my no. #1 advice: build it and build it right ... just like I did. Nothing yanks my proverbial chain more than professionals who don't do it professionally. If you're going to build your platform, rule #1: create a brand identity (use a professional marketing service) and then apply the brand. Applying the brand doesn't mean taking your homemade (or maybe even professionally made) logo and slapping it all over the place, including in your social media profile picture box. Nothing drives me more insane than talking to a logo in lieu of an image of an actual person.

Once you've created your brand look and feel, hire aforementioned marketing agency to design and create your platform, including your blog. Your marketing look and feel should always be consistent. But here is what I hear and see (typically small businesspeople) do: buy a $5.95 cookie cutter website template (you know the one that everyone else can buy) and push a bunch of homemade graphics around. Rule #2: if you don't do it by trade don't do it. Graphic art is a profession that requires education and training. It's like that cliché: don't try this at home. No. #2 advice: Just because you can doesn't mean you should. Same goes for content creation. Yes, most of us can to some degree write and write pretty good. Yet there are different types of writing: creative, business AND marketing content writing. Knowing what kind of content to create and how to create it falls under tip #2 which is the same as advice no. #2: Just because you can write doesn't mean you should write your own content.

Now a few of my readers might be saying, "Hey, she sells marketing services to clients. She has something to gain by telling me this information." Yes, my reading friends, I do gain clients because of one simple fact: they can't do it themselves and they want to look professional. The key message: look professional. Your image in this virtual world can suggest one of two concepts: I look small in a world where it is easy to look BIG ... or ... I look BIG in a world where it is easy to look big, but I'm really a super smart small business owner.

Do you want to look BIG in the BIG World? or Do you want to look small in a BIG world? We can help you look BIG! Think BIG and grow BIG! For more information, go to www.3LPublishing.com and look under our menu on Marketing and PR services, send an email to info@3LPublishing, or call 916-300-8012.

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