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Saturday, March 5, 2011

Marketing Success: There Is No Recipe

I'm a horrible cook, baker, or anything done in the kitchen.  Well, I can clean a mean dish.  But other than that the kitchen is not the place for me.  You can give me the simplest recipe and the end result will be something neither remotely close to what the recipe picture looks like or edible for others to eat.  Why is that?  Mostly is because I have very little interest.  My heart isn't into it.

When it comes to marketing success, so many look for this step-by-step recipe type of approach.  The "recipe" they are looking for is what tasks to accomplish.  What social networking site(s) to sign up for.  What blog service to use.  What online ad service to use.  So forth and so on.  Sure I can tell them my opinion of which to use, but even if I do . . . they probably will see very little success.  This is because are approaching things from a "what to do" standpoint and not a "why I am doing it" standpoint.  There is no heart put into the marketing.  It's approached as a task only.

Also, there is this notion that on can quickly attract a large amount of attention in a very short period of time.  Yes, Charlie Sheen recently attracted an astonishing 1 million Twitter followers in 24 hours.  First of all, he's Charlie Sheen.  He's an established name that was getting a ton of media attention prior to his announcement that he was now on Twitter.  The real truth is that 99.9% of success will NOT happen over night.  It will take many many long nights of hard work.  My wife's website gets thousands of visitors each month now.  The website has been out for a few years, and up until the last year it got a handful or so visitors each month and did little to convert anything.  It took several years to build up a presence, continually looking at various data, making strategic decisions, building up presence, and seeing reactions.  In addition, it was something we were very passionate about and sought to create a spot that provide valuable services to visitors.  We get great feedback and great traffic now.

Amanda Hocking is another great example of success from the heart.  This young woman wrote several books over the years.  She submitted them to publishers and was rejected time and time again.  She's no different than any other author out there.  J.K. Rowling's "Harry Potter" was rejected quite a few times prior to be picked up.  Anyway, Ms. Hocking decided to utilize self-publishing ebook options available today and continued with her blogging she enjoyed doing.  She has a passion for writing.  What has been the result?  As reported . . . about 100,000 ebooks sold in December and about 900,000 sold over the last 10 months.  Her ebooks are priced around $2.99 each.  Authors usually see about 65% to 70% payouts in this type of publishing.  Do the math.  But guess what . . . it wasn't about the money for her.  Just like a great cook, she wants to write her books and serve them to others to enjoy consuming.

So what is a real recipe for success in marketing?

  1. Have real purpose and passion about the product or service you are putting the message out about first.  
  2. Know your customer base, where they are, and deliver real benefit(s) to them.
  3. Keep at it and listen to feedback.
  4. Don't be afraid to try something new.
  5. Never be satisfied or get too full of yourself.

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