I’m just doing some competitor research and have come across a business that specialises in sales, marketing and social media. Not an unusual business but as I probe a little deeper I discover that this business has only tweeted once in six months, is following just 10 people and only has five followers! How can this business claim any expertise in social media?
However this got me thinking. I know that my own marketing is not always a great advocate for my business. It’s a bit like the cobbler’s children. You know the story, the cobbler’s children are the worst shod because the cobbler is too busy making shoes for customers. My marketing materials are often the same. I don’t allocate enough time to developing them, I don’t always make the time to get them professionally printed and I don’t have a customer to challenge the content. This means my marketing is not always consistent with my business.
I was having a conversation with my diet coach the other day and we were discussing the number of people running diet classes whilst being significantly overweight themselves. Little Britain’s Marjorie Dawes character is based in reality! Why would I take dietary advice from someone who is too overweight to be believable? An overweight diet coach is not consistent with running a weight loss business.
Are you presenting an image that is consistent with your business? As a web developer is your website current? As a hairdresser or beautician are you immaculately groomed? As a virtual assistant is your own administration up to date? As an accountant are your tax returns filed on time? As a doctor are you living a healthy lifestyle? I can think of inconsistent examples in all these fields.
Put yourself in your prospect’s shoes, would you buy from you based on the image you present? If not it is time to prioritise your own business. Look in the mirror; search for yourself on the Internet; ask your support network for feedback. How consistent is the message you convey with the service you offer? Use your power hour* to correct the anomalies. Take action now to avoid losing out to your competitors.
Get in touch if you would like an objective opinion on the consistency of your message but you may have to wait for me to finish my power hour correcting the inconsistencies in my messages!
Glenda Shawley has spent the last 20 years helping people to start and grow small businesses. Her advice is practical and cost effective. Her talks and courses invariably get great feedback and her marketing initiatives yield results. If you want some support to take ensure your messages are consistent with your business get in touch. Why not email firstname.lastname@example.org to see how?
* Your power hour is an hour you take away from working in your business to working on it. Ideally it should be the first hour of your day before you check emails, before you switch the answering machine off and before you start responding to customer demands. Book the time into your diary and guard it jealously, you’ll be surprised how much business development you get done.