Lots of amazing women business owners tell me that in spite of lots of effort, they regularly struggle with how to get more clients. They are experienced experts, with creative ideas and a burning desire to make a go of their business. But they feel out of sync when it comes to marketing. They hesitate to promote themselves because they don’t “like to sell”. They fear appearing pushy or perceived as only being about the money. And they are really unsure what type of marketing will work. So they use the “spray and pray” method, hoping that something they put out there will pay off.
Why has this happened? Everyone knows that if you don’t promote and market your services you’re out of business. Imagine putting yourself in a position to have to give up your dream because you simply didn’t know how to market yourself or you were uncomfortable doing so. Think of all the people who need your help, but won’t get it!
Recently I’ve been on a mission to resolve this issue, so that your star could shine the way it should. It stems from the business environment in which many of us were trained. The marketing environment of ten or twenty years ago was all about “head” centered marketing. In this marketing model, the bottom line was all that mattered. So overpromising, hype, and aggressive tactics were okay as long as the sale was made.
That was before social media when suddenly customers gained all the power. The old model no longer works and as long as you continue to associate marketing with that model you will feel uneasy about promoting your business.
Instead try switching to the new “heart” centered model. With this model, your marketing goal is to be authentic and honest in your promotions, deliver what you promise in your marketing, charge a fair price for the value received, and you strive to build trusting relationships with your subscribers, prospects and clients. This doesn’t mean you give away your services or that you give in to unreasonable customer requests. It means that your marketing is built on integrity and service, not on “the sale at all costs”. It’s not just about the numbers; it’s about the people who buy from you.
You still need to master the art of marketing strategy. You still need to learn what marketing activities and tactics work. You still need to create Mesmerizing Marketing Messages™ that compel people to pay attention. But your marketing messages are based on a deep understanding of the problems your prospects face and on helping them get the results they want.
When you market in this way, people say yes much more easily. Do you have to ask them to commit? Yes, but they will do so because there is a sense of trust and mutual respect that you’ve established with them, and they will refer you to others when you deliver what you said you would. And yes, sometimes people will say no to you, but that’s because they were not drawn to you or were not ready for what you offer. That’s okay.
So take a look at your discomfort around marketing and sales and ask yourself, “am I basing this on an outdated belief?” Are you keeping your business at a barely-surviving level because you are not promoting enough? Just keep promoting your business with passion and integrity. Offer value based information and you’ll build a community of followers who want to work with you. Use the new “heart” centered model and you’ll see your business grow.© Copyright 2011 Janis Pettit