Explain Your Business Story to a 6-Year-Old

simplify your messageThursday is the Great American Teach-In. Adults in the community are asked to come speak to students and explain what they do for a living. It’s sort of like Bring Your Child to Work Day but in reverse – it’s Bring Your Parent to School Day.

Having recently started a business, and with all of the excitement of a child with a new toy, I jumped at the chance to share my experience with the kids.

The problem is I’m in marketing. I spend all day long telling others how to tell their story. Now I have to tell mine — and to a roomful of rambunctious six-year olds.

I’m always telling people to tell their story. But how is a whole ‘nother, well….story. How about some insight on the how?

The following suggestions are what I’m using to craft, and tell, my (business) story: Continue reading “Explain Your Business Story to a 6-Year-Old”

Looking at Your Business Through Your Customers’ Eyes

Sometimes taking part in social media for business feels like shouting into a hurricane. You struggle to be heard. You struggle to stand out and be noticed.

safari business
Hemingway’s Bar – Hai, Kilimanjaro

You might be very confident in your abilities to connect,  but are you having problems discovering whom to connect with?

You’re probably thinking too narrow. If you have a brick and mortar business and don’t want to ship anything, you might only want to target people in your area (but what about vacationers/visitors?) or if you’re a membership organization representing a particular industry – maybe you need to remain limited in your search but everyone else can look for business in broad terms. Social media allows you to do this sort of prospecting with very little investment, other than time. Continue reading “Looking at Your Business Through Your Customers’ Eyes”

Content Marketing: Figuring out You Versus Them

Serving what your audience wants is crucial to maintaining one
Serving what your audience wants is crucial to maintaining one

I went to a baby shower a while back. All of the dishes served had some form of nuts in them – almond string beans, peanut-encrusted chicken, carrot cake (with walnuts). You would’ve thought the momma-to-be loved nuts. Actually, she hated them but the hostess thought everything was better with nuts and people liked them.

The hostess, in this example, is an old-school marketer. She is serving up what she wants to serve, what she thinks should be served. She’s mistaking general popularity with what her guests want, when in reality, the guest of honor doesn’t even want it.

 

 

Are you Serving Content Only You are Interested In? Continue reading “Content Marketing: Figuring out You Versus Them”

Just a Spoonful of Sharing Helps the Business

London's changed quite a bit since Mary Poppins' time. So should your messaging.
London’s changed quite a bit since Mary Poppins’ time. So should your messaging.

Dirty marketer alert: I’m going to be frank with you and the words may not be pretty. If you’re running a business or a member-based organization, there are things you are going to want to say. If you’re in business, you’re going to want to make money. It’s not ugly, it just is. Your customers or your members don’t really care about what you want to say, unless it just so happens to be something they also want to hear.

The truth is this: you have stuff you want to say.

They have stuff they want to hear.

If you’re good at what you do and you keep your audience in mind, everything you create will overlap and be what you want to say and what they want to hear. Sometimes, just sometimes, you have things you want to say that they don’t know they want to hear. So how do you deliver your message in a way that is palatable to them? That’s when you need Mary Poppins as your marketer – and just a spoon full of sugar to help the medicine go down. Yes, I just referred to your important marketing message as medicine — and if it’s something your audience doesn’t want to hear or know they want to hear — that’s how it will be initially met if you come at them and try and force feed them your message. Continue reading “Just a Spoonful of Sharing Helps the Business”

It’s Just a Blog

Today we want instantaneous results. In business we want immediate conversions. Associations (or member-based organizations) want immediate member sign-ups. Guess what? A blog won’t do this for you the moment you launch it.

So why do it if you’re not seeing immediate return? Why date if you want to get married? You’re wasting a lot of time meeting new people aren’t you?

Continue reading “It’s Just a Blog”