(Photo by Polina Sergeeva)
If you’re just starting a new business, the biggest mistake you’re likely to make in your marketing is to be blind to the business landscape. You know what you’re offering, you know why it’s valuable, and you know why people need to buy it now. Or do you?
Odds are you’re too close to your business and too far from your client’s mindset. While you may think what you’re offering is the best thing (by far) on the market, your prospective customer knows nothing about you and doesn’t trust in what you’re saying. Being too much in your own world is a symptom of not actively being in a dialogue with prospective customers. For example, how often do you meet people face-to-face who may be interested in what you’re selling? When you do, are you focused on selling them, or are you asking them questions about their needs and their decision-making process? Are you listening to the words they use? Are you looking not just at what they say but also what they do (or have done)?
Before you launch your offering, have you tested your marketing on a wide range of prospective customers? Is your message blindingly obvious or do you need to help explain it so people “get it”? Are you testing not just with your inner (supportive) circle but also with complete strangers (who are more like your target market)? Are you not just getting nods of recognition but also immediate confirmation that you’ve hit the bullseye?
Are you having your peers compare your marketing efforts to those of your competition? Is your message more focused, better written, and graphically easier to understand? Is your call-to-action compelling? Is your value proposition crystal-clear? Is the next step you want your prospect to take clearly articulated?
If you find yourself getting frustrated that others “just aren’t getting it” – consider that you’re either ahead of your time or woefully mistaken. In both cases, you’re wrong. The market is right. If someone won’t buy what you’re selling, you’re better off finding out about it sooner rather than later. Don’t be blind to your own ignorance.