I have a few marketing clients who constantly seek to improve the depth of their expertise in whatever their specialty is. These folks will quickly register for professional development that teaches them more about their subject matter. But, I notice, when the same amount of time and money could be spend on a marketing workshop they cry poor, are suddenly busy, and will not commit to attend.
Here’s the deal – if you are in business for yourself then, by default, your MAIN work is marketing. You have to master marketing more than you have to master your subject matter expertise. What I often see is someone who wants to go out on their own after having worked for a company for many years. This person is well-versed in their subject, often a highly trained expert. They may have excellent contacts in their field. But, this person has never had to go out and bring in business. Marketing expertise is what this entrepreneur needs now, not more subject matter expertise.
For entrepreneurs and other small biz owners, marketing is where the rubber meets the road. Life will go much easier once we all fully understand we are now and forever more will be a marketer first, before we are a subject matter expert. If we don’t get this, it won’t matter HOW talented we are – the business will not thrive.
Am I saying one should never go learn more about their subject? No, but chances are good that you are quicker to go where you are comfortable and already have some mastery. It takes more courage to go where you feel vulnerable – and that’s usually on the marketing end of things.
Think about it — you most need to learn what you do NOT know. You usually need to learn what you most resist. Here’s a plan for you to make more income from business.
- Does your field require continuing education for licensure, accreditation, or certification? If so, resolve to take the minimum required for the next year or so, and get them locally, as cheaply as you can.
- Take the money saved and commit to attending one really solid marketing workshop in the next three months.
- Join a Mastermind group, selecting people who are currently more successful in their business than you are. Don’t slack, attend every single meeting!
- Get a marketing coach who can help you see your weak spots and work on them. If you can’t afford one-on-one coaching, consider group coaching.
- Mark off at least one SOLID day each week that is “marketing day” and stick to it.
These steps will take you a in a positive direction, helping you feel and act far more positive about your marketing skills and building good marketing habits. And, guess what – consistent applicable will give you consistent results – and that makes your business thrive.