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Episode 31 – What Kind Of Marketing Should You Do When?

I’m excited to talk about this, because, well it’s a question that people don’t realize they should be asking themselves and a lot of the time if their foundation is good, the reason they aren’t making money, in the beginning, is because of the kind of marketing they are doing.

Let’s dive in

What counts as marketing?

Oxford Dictionary defines marketing as:

‘The action or business of promoting and selling products or services, including research and advertising.’

Let’s be honest though, that is very broad.

Then when we bring Content Marketing into the mix where we are not selling or promoting something directly, there is even more that can be understood under the umbrella of marketing.

Now we don’t know if we should be blogging, using social media, telling people about our products or what we should be doing!

So, let’s focus on what matters to our bottom line in a relatively young or small business.

Marketing can be direct or indirect in its approach and that matters

Meaning it can be focused on getting the sale, or be focused on other goals.

What other goals could marketing have?

Well, it could be focused on many things but generally these fall in two categories – Authority Positioning and Brand Awareness.

So when you see an ad for Audi they usually aren’t expecting you to rush down to your local dealership right there and then, they are building Brand Awareness, they are connecting what they want you to associate with Audi.

They are trying to tell you what kind of person you would be if you had an Audi and how you would feel if you were one of those people.

They are building a picture of what their brand means.

If you were to use this approach as a new coach, consultant or service provider it would be utterly ridiculous and fairly pointless to create this kind of marketing.

Let’s look at what kind of marketing happens when

I believe marketing focus happens on a spectrum from:

  1. Lead Generation – focus on getting leads to make sales, which makes sense early on. Gradating to:
  2. Authority Positioning – which has a focus on building authority to build desire and increase your pricing to:
  3. Brand Awareness – which generally happens when you are a large company or established brand and can build more layers into what is already known about your company. That is where Audi sits.

So, what should you be doing?

Probably as a new or relatively new business owner, you are going to be tempted to go with Authority Positioning – activities that position you as an authority.

I would argue that your focus needs to be first on Lead Generation – activities that will get people into a conversation with you which could lead to them buying from you, then second on Authority Building.

Why Lead Generation first?

Because right at the beginning of your business you need sales, before all else.

How do you get sales?

By removing all layers of abstraction that you will almost certainly want to have there.

Think: but I should send them to my website, give them a business card, do some other thing to create a barrier between me and them actually talking about money.

Instead of putting all those layers in the way just HAVE THE CONVERSATION so you can see what the person needs and if it’s a fit to work together.

You don’t need to learn how to do a bunch of other things – just do the actions it takes to get people in conversation with you about your services.

In short, focus on getting leads. Lead Generation.

Will it help if you have been on podcasts or written a book or if you are known as an authority?

Of course.

But those actions will take time so make the most of what you have right now and operate more at the Lead Generation end of the spectrum.

But what about all those blog posts I’ve been reading on Authority Marketing?

Authority Marketing is good, it enables you to charge more and have better clients because you are an authority.

Remember, pricing is influenced by four factors (ep 23)

  1. Your Level of Expertise
  2. Your Social Proof
  3. Your Sales Skills
  4. Your Confidence

Authority Marketing works on your social proof and your perceived level of expertise as well as your confidence.

But you are also going to need some clients to practice on to increase your actual expertise and build testimonials for your social proof too.

And in order to get clients to practice on, you need to focus on what is going to truly make a difference to your sales.

You want to focus on getting the conversations first.

As you progress you’ll move more into less direct methods of getting conversations and making sales, you may end up fully automating the sales process but don’t try and jump straight to year 3 activities in year 1.

Marketing on a spectrum

So what does this look like in some of the stages of an online, freedom-based business

Starter: You’ve just launched your business. Your marketing focus should be 80% Lead Generation 20% Authority Positioning maximum.

Hustler: You are building your sales up to around the $10k mark. Your marketing focus should start to shift over to more Authority Positioning. You may be around 50:50.

Pro: Now you have a good level of income and are relatively established in the marketplace. You might move to 70-80% Authority Positioning, 20% Lead Generation.

Of course, Authority Positioning still gets you sales, it is just the focus is less direct.

It’s important to remember as well that the online space, in general, is more direct than offline.

It’s all about what you are focusing on.

The core message is early on keep your marketing focus on leads and sales.

That will keep your business growing.

What do you think?

  • Do you find it hard to focus on the sales?
  • Where do you prefer to focus on in your marketing?

Let me know in the comments below.

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