Avoiding Marketing Mistakes

If you want to avoid making marketing mistakes, you have to understand who your “A” class customers are. We all learn from experience and I learned this lesson hard.  I blundered badly when I had the wrong focus with my first small business client.

My big mistake was that I assumed that every single business problem could be solved by sales and marketing. So I went to my first business owner/client and convinced him to just ramp up the sales and marketing. We did that and very successfully but… I nearly killed his business.

I realized that he was the business.  So as we grew his business, he said “Slow down!” I was supposed to help him solve his problems, not add to them. I think he was working about 60 hours a week and he was working 90 to 100 hours to provide the items that he had sold through his great sales campaign. That was my first brutal lesson in understanding the principles of operating a small business.

Before you even consider introducing sales and marketing strategies, the first principle that you have to address are the cash flow requirements of your business. If you are going to grow the business, you have to look at how much money you will need to make it grow. This means that you have to understand the financial condition of your business. You need to consider “what if” scenarios. You also need to understand that you need money to grow a business.

Now, once you have stopped the cash leaks, you have to upgrade the engine. You have to take the small 4 cylinder 1,200 cc engine and replace it with a turbo charged high performance, high capacity machine. We call that systemization because the business is the system.

If I have done those two things, then, and only then, should I accelerate the car by introducing massive and profound sales and marketing strategies. In my big blunder, I accelerated the car to a turbo speed and blew the engine. It was only a 4 cylinder car. It could only go 90 miles an hour. Remember, that you first need to understand the vehicle, then stop the oil leaks and then upgrade the engine.

Now, let us now look at some handy tips that can help you to accelerate your business.

Understand who your customers are

Now when I say that you must understand who your customers are, I am referring to your “A” class customers. If you can describe your perfect customer, then that is your “A” class. Your business is about generating more “A” class customers not just every single type of customer.

You may not have it right – but give it a go anyway

The enemy is procrastination. People are seeking perfection in an imperfect world. Great entrepreneurs are calculated risk takers. The greatest principle that I can give anybody is just do something.

Set the sales target

When you are in marketing, you have to know what you want to achieve. Then, when you test and measure your results, you will be able to see if it is working or not. Once you have a go and introduce these strategies, at the same time you have to set a target of what you are trying to hit. This is a very important part.

Set a marketing budget

A marketing budget is predominately aimed at limiting your marketing dollars to those activities which either reduce the cost of client acquisition or increase the life of the customer. Marketing can be very expensive because you are hoodwinked into deception by organizations who tell you that the answer is one strategy. There are many, many, many strategies. My greatest passion in life is to use low cost strategies first. Set a marketing budget, set a target, systemize your business and then just have a go.

Multiple touches

Not every strategy works. We sometimes mistake strategies for goals. We think a strategy does not work so we give up. I will assure you that the challenge of a business owner is to crack the code. Once you have the code, reuse the code.

All I am suggesting is that you have got to try different things to develop a fantastic business. Most business owners rely on too little marketing strategies to give them too much. They rely on one form of lead generation. If that lead generation strategy does not work, they go into a tail spin where the cash flow declines dramatically.

The key to all of this is to get yourself into a position where you have so many different ways to generate leads; so many different ways to improve your conversion rates; so many different ways to increase you average frequency of sales, that way when one fails it doesn’t matter. You may not know where the sales and customers are going to come from, but if you have multiple touches and have avoided the big marketing mistakes, they will come.


The author is founder and Chief Energy Officer of Achievers group. He is a much in demand passionate professional speaker, business educator, author and corporate and business advisor.  He has worked with over 170 businesses around the world.

Website: www.achieversgroup.com.au

Email: tony@achieversgroup.com.au

Phone: 0410 538 521

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