Lets talk about the M word.  No not Murder (although for some it may feel this way!).  I’m talking about MARKETING! Many of my colleagues in the transformational arts industry seem to think that marketing is a bit, well shall I say, dirty.  Most people I’ve been speaking to lately have been sharing how much they hate that part of their business and how much it pains them to have to put any time or energy into it. Others complain about where they’ve spent lots of money and are now gun shy because they did not get the result they had hoped for.

Just last week I was at a networking event where I asked several people about their marketing strategies. What I heard from every single one of them was something or another about their advertising and waste of money, etc etc.

Hold the presses! Advertising??? I didn’t ask about advertising… I asked about marketing!  And yes, marketing might include advertising as a vehicle to get the word out, however, it is certainly not the whole of marketing.

What this reoccurring answer to my question actually told me is that there is a large misconception about what marketing actually is in the service based business community. And, there is a lot of wasted money going in to marketing efforts that are either putting the cart before the horse, or utilizing marketing approaches that may not work because of the type of business you have.

I recently offered to help someone create an e-zine for his business to draw in more prospects and convert them to clients and his response was, “I do want to put an e-zine in place, but I’ve been spending a lot on marketing right now and I am hesitant to spend anymore. UNLESS perhaps, you know someone that might be interested in my services.  Let me know…”

So clearly his marketing efforts have not paid off if he is hesitant to put more money toward it. AND… his fear of investing again (or more) shows that he has made poor choices in where he invested his marketing dollars thus far. Probably because he just didn’t know any better at time time (as most of us don’t at first). Unfortunately for him is that now he is holding back on on utilizing a proven approach that will help him keep his operations running.  So the advice I gave him was this…

Think of marketing as the fuel in your engine…

1.You always need to spend money on fuel to keep the motor running.
2. With the right fuel, you can go much farther and spend way less on “repairs”.

Fuel for thought.