A New Years Resolution For Business Owners: Shift Your Marketing

Remember the old days when business owners just managed their businesses? When I say old days I mean 4 or 5 years ago. I am a partner in Phoenix’ newest and most progressive (I believe) Search Engine Marketing, Search Engine Optimization and Social Media Company-PRO-found Marketing, we help PRO-fessionals get found online, where your customers are.

Consumer behavior has changed, your customers behavior has changed.  Yours, mine, our behavior has changed. Remember the old days where we would go to our mailbox for a postcard, receive a flyer on our door, pay attention to a TV commercial or radio ad? These instances are happening less and less because they are becoming less effective.

In today’s business space there is immense pressure to perform, to succeed. There is obviously pressure to make a living, but in addition there is pressure to remain competitive-to keep up with the Jones’ (if you will)-only in today’s environment, the Jones’ will not only take your lunch money, they will eat your lunch too! Today’s Jones’ are your competitor down the street-another Doctor, Dentist, Accountant, Lawyer or online provider. Luckily for you, most businesses have horrible websites, when I say “horrible” I mean, they look pretty but they do absolutely nothing. I find that there is a breakdown when it comes to a business owners perception of what a website is, should do and shouldn’t do. 95% of the time, when I ask a business owner how many leads they get from their website monthly and more importantly-how many of them have turned into closed transactions the answer is usually pretty close to ZERO. Not surprising really.

Most business owners we talk to feel, their website should be visually appealing. No doubt about it, it should but this one aspect is what most businesses will gauge their website success on. “Does it look pretty?, “How does my glamor shot, product or service look?” In reality, it doesn’t matter what a website or the product looks like if NO ONE is going to see it. Does it? Nope, most businesses websites are more like electronic billboards on the Internet than they are business hubs or storefronts.

Today, businesses needs to sell products/services and build a business at the same time. One of the most important aspects of any business is Marketing. Most businesses still use outbound marketing tools like Postcards, Flyers, Cold Calls, Trade Shows, Radio, TV, even Door to Door to get their message out. This type of marketing is considered Interruption marketing. Originally coined by Seth Godin, Interruption Marketing is any practice that only works if it interrupts you to get your attention. The Cold Call that INTERRUPTS your dinner, the postcard that INTERRUPTS your paying bills, the TV commercial that INTERRUPTS GLEE!, the Print Ad in your morning newspaper that INTERRUPTS the sports section. Not only are these marketing methods annoying and often times expensive, they are becoming less and less effective because we tune them out. The average consumer is overwhelmed by marketing messages every day and they (we) don’t like it.

The American Research Foundation conducted a survey on receptivity to marketing at the 2004 management conference of the American Association of Advertising Agencies, it found that negative consumer perceptions of advertising had and continues to increase.  56 percent of survey respondents said they avoided buying products that overwhelmed them with advertising, up from the 54 percent who said so in the 2004 survey. worse for outbound marketers-69 percent of respondents said they were interested in ways to block, skip or opt out of being exposed to advertising altogether.

Today its more practical, effective and cost effective to bring your customers to you. It’s called Inbound Marketing. Inbound Marketing methods help you, your product or service “get found” by people already interested in learning about you, your product/service or your industry. Inbound marketing requires a good-strong website rich in unique content, keywords, pictures, video etc that attracts visitors naturally through search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing, and through social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

And that is the problem. When we explain what is necessary to not only survive but thrive in today’s business space we typically get 1 of 4 responses:

* I don’t want to do it
* I don’t know how
* I don’t have the time
* I won’t do it

At least they are honest. Most of the businesses that say they will do it, wont. Life comes along, a new fire to put out or something that requires attention and therefor takes away from their marketing efforts. And that is where the pressure comes in. There simply is not enough time or sometimes, passion to focus on marketing when business comes along. But-what if? What if there was a company that could and would handle your inbound marketing efforts? What would it look like? What would your business  look like if you could focus on your highest and best use-servicing your customers-while having the peace of mind that your marketing is working in the background, 24/7. We are called PRO-found Marketing, we help PRO-fessionals get “found” online.  We can help you.

PRO-found will build you a ridiculous, and AFFORDABLE website (that works) on the WordPress platform, write unique content for you based on the keywords you want to be “found” for and provide you with ongoing training to help you stay ahead of the Jones’.

Lets Talk.  We Can Help

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