The most successful businesses bake marketing into their services. In this post, I will explain what that means and why you should do the same.
If you have not heard the term before, baking marketing into a service (or product) means creating something, which is of so much value and interest that people want to buy it and also tell their friends about it. This is how products like the iPhone and services like Uber grew so popular, so fast.
Most small business owners do the opposite
Look around you at your competitors and you will notice how similar they are. Remarkably so. In fact, their similarity to one another is the only remarkable thing about them. So, they try and undercut one another on prices or fees, out network one another or outspend one another on marketing.
They are focusing their time and money in completely the wrong direction. They are trying to get people interested in something, which isn’t interesting. This is a costly, avoidable mistake.
I want something far better for you and your business!
Bake marketing into what you do
Today, I am going to ask you to consider doing something bold. I’m asking you to consider adding value (huge value) to what you market… your core products or services.
Why? Because you can waste years of your time trying to sell a service, which is simply not interesting enough to the marketplace. Great marketing is no substitute for a dull product or service.
The reason there is so much uninspiring stuff out there, is that business owners tend to be passionate about the products or services they provide. This happens, regardless of how generic or average their products or services are. Business owners are often blind to just how insipid their offering is. In Steven Pressfield’s new book, No one wants to read your sh*t, he calls this mindset client’s disease.
Conversely, a service that is of exceptional value will often sell itself, as people are so impressed with it that they spread the word. I regularly speak with business owners who don’t need to spend a penny on advertising, because their customers and their marketplace are always recommending them.
Most small business owners use the opposite approach. Instead of inspiring people with the story behind their business, they try to motivate uninspired people to talk about their uninspiring offerings.
- Some offer commissions.
- Others try to pester people into recommending them.
- Many join networking clubs, hoping that social pressure, reciprocity or rules of membership, will force people to talk about them.
- Some spam us with unsolicited emails or pester us on social networks.
All of those work to a degree, but you can do massively better by shifting your focus 180 degrees!
- If you are the only person proactively telling the world about your business, your growth will be limited. You can only pester so many people. You can only attend so many networking groups.
- If your offering is remarkable enough that people tell people about it — and these people tell people about it — and these people tell people about it… you have a highly successful business on your hands.
Here’s what we know: People do not need to be pestered or pressured into recommending a GREAT service. They automatically spread the word when they encounter something exceptional. However, we must first give people something worth talking about… a story worth sharing.
When we do, they can’t help themselves. They shout from the rooftops.
A better approach
The alternative is to bake marketing into what you do. Here are some suggestions to get you started.
- Observe your marketplace and develop a product or service, which is based on what they want. This is way better than offering your version of what your competitors already provide.
- Give people a story about you or your business that’s worth sharing. This means having the courage to be different. Easier said than done, but essential if you want to attract the interest of your marketplace.
- Deliver a customer experience that stands out for all the right reasons. Pull out all the stops. Leave your clients and prospective clients feeling moved and roused by the experience of working with you, visiting you or connecting with you.
- Demonstrate your passion for what you do and your desire to help others. Passion stands out. Passion is infectious.
- Have outsiders. You can’t have insiders without outsiders. Insiders are the people who buy from you. Insiders are the people your services are aimed at. Don’t try and be all things to all people. If you do, your story will be vague and cease to motivate people.
- Learn from the products and services that you recommend. Think about what drives you to spread the word about certain businesses. What lessons can be adapted from what they do and used in your business, to help you deliver something remarkable?
Just don’t fall into the trap of trying to get people inspired about an uninspiring service or product. It’s expensive, low leverage, frustrating and places a very low ceiling on your potential.