Jim's Marketing Blog

Marketing ideas to help you grow your business

Page 5 of 202

Bloggers: Are you 1 question away from 10000 daily readers?

In this post, I’m going to share what is easily the single best piece of blogging advice I know.

Here it is: Drum roll please…

If you would like more great people to read your blog, start off by asking yourself the following question:

“If I already had 10,000 prospective clients reading my blog each day, how much time and money would I be prepared to invest in developing it and delivering useful content?”

When I ask people that question, they often say things like:

  • Wow… with 10,000 readers each day, I’d invest as much time as I possibly could.
  • The  blog would be worth a fortune, so I’d invest in a professional design. With all those readers, I wouldn’t want to look cheap.
  • I’d publish posts most days and really work hard to make the content as useful as possible.

Cause and effect

After listening to their answers, I sometimes take a look at their blogs and usually find that they have not invested much time, money or energy into them. They want a highly valuable blog, but they won’t make the commitment required, until after their blog is a success.

That approach is a little like a restaurant owner saying she refuses to serve great food, until after her restaurant if full every night!

My mentor used to say that it would be crazy to walk up to an empty fireplace and expect heat. We know we need to do the work of building the fire and lighting it, before we can enjoy the warmth.

We don’t need to be geniuses to build a successful blog, but we do need to be wise enough to understand that our results will be guided by our actions.

A leap of faith

The people that already have thousands of daily readers, did the work and made the investments before our blogs became popular. We paid the price for success in advance.

That takes a huge leap of faith, but unless you show faith in your blog, you can’t expect others to.

P.S. Still not convinced? Here are 25 Reasons to write a business blog.

Here’s something extra for your business

extra something

We already know where the bar is set, when it comes to delighting your clients and customers. Their experience of you needs to be so good that it leaves them thinking:

“That was far better than I expected.”

Get that right and they will come back for more. They’ll tell their friends too.

The challenge here is obvious

The business owner who commits to this model, needs to consistently look for ways to improve. That’s because once you set the bar this high, what’s expected of you also increases and thus a cycle of excellence is created.

I have to warn you, exceeding expectations isn’t as easy as simply meeting expectations. However, in my experience the rewards are well worth the effort. You will attract the best clients and build a great reputation too.

On a personal note

This approach has inspired me to achieve amazing results for countless clients. It stretches me to do my best work… to over-deliver for them. As a result, I’ve taken clients from desperation or frustration, to life-changing commercial successes.

If you are not already doing so, I strongly recommend you use the same approach.

How to be successful without even trying

It’s an interesting fact that very few of the world’s most successful businesspeople, set out with money or success as their primary target.

  • They aimed to be valuable.
  • They aimed to make the world or the marketplace a better place.
  • They aimed to make a difference.

However, money or success was not their primary focus.

Here’s how they did it!

Steve Jobs famously said:

“I was worth over $1,000,000 when I was 23, and over $10,000,000 when I was 24, and over $100,000,000 when I was 25, and it wasn’t that important because I never did it for the money”.

If Jobs was focused primarily on the money or success, he’d have been able to cash in when he was in his 20’s — super rich and exceptionally successful.

When Einstein said,

“Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value”, he showed where his focus was. Again, it was about the value. Einstein carried on working until his death, even though he could have quit decades earlier with his reputation set in history forever.

To understand how the most successful and wealthy business owners achieved their success, we need to look at why most business owners struggle.

It’s easy to spot someone who is in it just for the money

You can usually tell pretty quick, when you encounter someone who is primarily in it for the money. This makes it very hard for them to succeed.

Here are some examples we see all the time, which you will recognise instantly:

  • They are the salespeople, whose eyes light up like a wolf when they spot a potential sales victim.
  • They are the affiliate marketers, who leave spammy links and comments on blogs.
  • They are the pests, who send us unwanted spam email.
  • They are the pushy business owners, who corner us at networking events. The ones who pretend they want to know about our business, when we know it’s that old, cringe-worthy networking tactic.
  • They are the ill-informed marketing gurus who STILL say the money is in the list, because they haven’t figured out the value is in the community.
  • They are the struggling restaurant owners, who use slightly lower quality ingredients and hire slightly lower quality chefs, and end up with a low quality restaurant that no one recommends.
  • They are the kind of business owners you thought of, as you were reading those examples.

Clearly, there is nothing wrong with being wealthy or successful. My point, is that it’s very hard to be either of those things, if they are our primary focus.

Here’s how to succeed without focusing primarily on the money

Consider for a moment the businesses out there, who struggle. They set financial targets and then push average products and average services to average clients who pay them average prices. These business owners then think people just won’t pay higher fees. This is factually 100% incorrect! People won’t pay above average fees for an average, commodity service. They happily pay above average fees and prices for premium, high value products and services.

Now consider the businesses who earn a fortune and succeed. They offer products or services, which are meaningfully different. Their products and services attract the attention of people looking for that special value.

They end up selling valuable products and valuable services to valuable clients, who pay them extremely well.

The way forward for smart business owners

Focus on value. Create products or services that are meaningfully different from the competition. Solve better problems. Create work you are proud of.

Persistently create value and make it visible. People are extremely attracted to value and they pay a premium for it too. Just ask the owner of any high priced Apple product, the owner of a luxury car or the client of any leading service provider.

Get this right and the money and success take care of themselves.

PS: You will find this useful. It explains how to make more sales or attract more clients, without ever having to lower your fees — Marketing 101: The Race To The Bottom.

What are you waiting for?

Time

This is the right time.

Putting off decision making is not connected to making better decisions. No one procrastinates their way to success. Once you have the information you need, it’s time to quit stalling. It’s time to stop making excuses and take action.

Why?

Because business owners who take too much time, find that LATER usually becomes NEVER.

4 Inspiring reasons to write regularly

There are many compelling business reasons to write regularly. For example, blogging can be massively valuable as a marketing tool. The same is true of newsletter writing.

Here are 4 less obvious benefits to writing regularly, which seldom get mentioned. In many ways, these are just as valuable.

  1. Writing makes you a better observer. As a result, you notice more of the world around you. You experience more from life.
  2. Writing helps you think with greater clarity. The process of getting ideas out of your head and onto the page, is a wonderful antidote for foggy thinking.
  3. Writing is a powerful development tool. To write effectively on any subject, you need to know about that subject. Even better, to write about a subject regularly, you need to constantly learn more.
  4. Writing is an act of contribution. When you share your ideas or stories with others, you invest in them. You also connect with them. How might that help your business? Think about that for a moment.

PS: Here are 25 reasons to write a business blog.

How to motivate people to buy from you or hire you

focus

I have a plea for you today: If you want your marketing to work, stop trying to please everyone.

The purpose of your marketing is to motivate just a small section of people. You need to inspire those who:

  • Buy the type of products you sell.
  • Buy the type of services you provide.

That’s it.

Directly relevant

Be directly relevant to your ideal profile of client and ignore the rest. For example, if you offer a high quality service, which is priced higher than most of your competitors, market it exclusively for those who appreciate quality and are happy to pay for it. They will immediately connect with your marketing message, because it was written exclusively for people like them.

Conversely, by marketing to the masses, your marketing is directly relevant to no one. At best, your marketing will be vaguely relevant to some people. The challenge here, is that being vaguely relevant isn’t enough to motivate people to buy from you or hire you.

So, get specific.

P.S. This will help you: Don’t let this guy ruin your marketing!

How to find a winning idea

ideas

It’s entirely possible you have a winning idea tucked away right now, without even knowing it. The thing about great ideas is that they often look like bad ideas, until they become hugely successful.

The laptop fad

In 1985, The New York Times asked; “Whatever happened to the laptop computer?” They pondered why laptops failed:

“[…] I.B.M. never legitimized the market with its much rumored ”Clamshell,” probably because the company realized that laptops are a small niche market, not a mass market.”

Similarly, when the electric light bulb was invented, some people said it would never become a mass market product. It was thought that there was no affordable way to get electricity to every home.

Is your idea a winner?

I speak regularly with business owners who want to know what I think of their business ideas. The challenge here, is that good ideas are not anointed. It doesn’t matter what I think or what your friends think. That’s not what makes an idea a winner.

If you want to know how good your idea is, you need to ship it. Get it out there. If you do, you will find it’s almost impossible to fail. It’s a win, win thing.

Here’s why:

  • If it flops, you will learn something, which you can invest in the next idea and greatly increase your chances of success.
  • If it flies, you have a success on your hands.

So, put your idea out there and give it a chance to fly!

P.S. — Here are 6 ideas to make prospective clients fall in love with your business.

Increase word of mouth referrals with this simple idea

Give this a try:

  • Think of 3 amazing things, which you would LOVE your marketplace to be saying about you or your business.
  • Write them down.
  • Next, put a plan together of the things you will need to do, in order for your marketplace to be spreading those amazing stories about you.

Switching focus

Every small business owner wants to attract more word of mouth referrals, yet they almost always focus on the wrong area. Instead of creating an experience, which becomes a remarkable story worth sharing – they focus on how to motivate people to share an unremarkable story.

People are hard-wired to want to communicate with each other. Give them an experience worth talking about and that’s exactly what they will do.

« Older posts Newer posts »