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I was thinking about the marketing and client issues I see every day. It kept me awake for hours. But why, I asked myself? Is it that fact that what I learn is outdated so quickly? Is it that the marketing tools we use are constantly changing? Is it that clients think they can do it themselves or are told they can? Or can it be that what I share is in fact current and appropriate but doesn’t seem reasonable to them? Perhaps I didn’t explain it well enough or avoided jargon so it seemed too simple.

Marketing Reality

Experts make the complex look simple. Keeping current along with a compilation of years of knowledge and practical experience is what a professional brings to the table. We also fight against the myriads of scammers who offer ‘a shiny penny’ then bill their customers an exorbitant price for little scope of work done. Even so, many small business owners still put a marketing plan in place based on what used to be done and what used to work. Still others, up to 80%, don’t have a marketing plan at all nor do they budget for one. Now do you see why I’m losing sleep?

Experts versus novelists

If the expert can barely keep up and stay current with the ever changing digital online marketing, how can a novelist? With the rise of DIYers and marketing platforms promoting self service to bump their profits, consumers think they can do it themselves. But when the actual results of their marketing efforts come in, that is even if they’ve put something in place to gage their results, and their efforts are not realized, client frustration sets in and budget money is often wasted.

Observations and suggestions

Watching from the sidelines and listening to many client experiences, I believe what really needs to be done is for clients to set aside a little each year to create a marketing plan, set a budget and seek expert advice (not a sales pitch). Keep in mind that a business needs to spend about 10% of annual revenue on marketing to stay where they are and 15% to grow their business. It’s worth paying an experienced, in-the-know marketing expert who will advise their clients with no obligation to use their services or services of affiliates. They will teach you what current marketing methods will be suitable for your business in an ever changing marketplace and demographics.

So by listening to the experts, setting a budget so that together you can create a marketing plan you can sleep at night….and so can I.

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