Marketing Has Gone Amuck

Marketing is okay, it’s the way marketers market that I can’t stand.

I turned 65 in June.  I started getting the calls in January.  Have you ever had your phone ring 20 different times in a day because someone wanted to talk to you about Medicare?   Even after I signed up for part B, they would not let me alone. Although I told the same callers daily that I had TRICARE and Medicare part B, they stilled called me the following day, and the day after that, and the day after that. It got to where I could not pick up the phone anymore.  I just heard that next year there will be 10 billion more robocalls.

I hope you don’t have to experience this, I know you won’t experience it at all from me.

I turned to my email. Unfortunately, it turns out I was routinely getting more emails with even more people who wanted me to buy something from them. When I used the unsubscribe buttons, many requests were just ignored. They just kept on sending me junk mail. And that’s when I made a promise.

I will never market anything by being a bother to anyone until they buy. I will do my best to avoid mail funnels. I will continue to remind myself and anyone who works for me that we have a quality product that can speak for itself. We have no need to bother anybody. And, shame on us if we do.

I tell you about this now because, as my first training products are making their way into the marketplace, I plan to hold faithfully to these promises mentioned above. In open forums, articles and my blog, I will let you know how I am doing with various projects. I may tell you of the benefits of some of my courses or an exciting book you might like. Yet, I am not pressuring you, nor do I expect you to drop everything and go buy whatever I am talking about. If you’re interested in more information, at the end of an article I will post my email, and I will give you my Facebook group which you may join if you’re interested. I may even post my phone number in case you wish to call me and ask a question or two.

This is my experiment for sane marketing.

mikeb@reveille.com                                      Reveille Facebook Group

A New Way to Market

Traditional marketing can often be stressful. I find it both stressful for the consumer and for the salesperson. Once a consumer shows interest in something the emails start to flow. The email congratulates you and assures you want what the salesperson has to offer.

As emails continue, the pressure mounts as the consumers are told how great the product is, and how dumb it would be to miss out on the offer. At times the emails can get downright offensive and embarrassing. The salesperson is under stress to convert more and more people from observers to users of the product. Failure to make quota means less money and a shorter job.

I have seen this on one platform or another whether magazines and snail mail or social media and email. Pretty much it all boils down the same.

I’m here to break that chain.

I know I just said something akin to let’s move Mount Shasta to the East Coast. I assure you, reworking marketing will be better and more accessible than repositioning a mountain.

I would like to start with a few ideas.

If you have something good, you want your friends and acquaintances to have it. Thus, you want to sell to friends.

Most of us have just a few friends. This means we have to make more friends. We have to gather friends who need the services we can provide for them.

How do you get rid of enemies?  Make them your friends.

You find new friends where they are, not where you are.

If your friends who use your products are happy, they tell their friends.

When the people who use your product are unhappy with it, they tell everyone.

I will tell you more tomorrow.  For now, I just wanted to start explaining a new idea in marketing that is different and might confuse some people. 

Needed Improvements

Have you ever had an irritating problem that just threw you off your whole day’s activities? Something significant enough to be a thorn in your side and yet should’ve been small enough that you would handle it in due course? I had one of those this morning. And it disrupted my whole morning routine.

My cell phone died. The end had been coming for the last few weeks. And although with technical help, I had been able to breathe life back into it for a little while, it had died. It had been an excellent 2014 phone which had lasted me just shy of four years. It’s the longest time I had ever had the same cell phone.

There was no reason to get hung up about the problem. It was just an inanimate object whose time for replacement had come, and yet it started my whole week off by having to cancel the weekly call with my accountability partner. And although I’ve had problems like this before, I don’t know why this one took me over the edge.

I think it might have been the fact that, I believe I should’ve been more active in staying ahead of the problems and not letting them come to fruition. Rather than trying to squeeze every penny out of every item in use, I need to pay closer attention to functional lifespan and staying ahead of the curve on needed improvements.

Our business, personal, and family life, all deserve upgrades as needed.

I do not believe I’m the only one to ever face the need for positive change either and what I use or what I do. If you have a story about a needed change, please share with us. I would be glad to see that it gets posted.

Thank you for being here. I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

Got Help?

It is okay to need or offer help.

One day or another, on one question or another each of us needs assistance in finding the answers. Help sometimes comes in the form of knowing something the other person does not and sharing that knowledge. Other times, it is the ability to do something that another person cannot do for themselves.

Once again, we see significant weather phenomena, affecting our coastline. With wind and rain, and devastation to buildings and infrastructure, we see people in the middle of the storm bringing in their boats and going out to help people. We think those people and praise them for risking their own life and limb to save others.

Most of the time, help does not require anything quite so dramatic. Help is often two friends having a talk, sharing information, knowing that one would gladly give another a hand. Help is often someone just listening to another person and giving them a suggestion or two.

In many instances, the person being helped today may be giving the help tomorrow or the next day. After all, as the poets remind us, we are not islands, and we were never designed to live in solitude. Help and being helped is part of our inherited destiny. And, we should participate in that destiny when needed.

Limited Stress

In life, we find many occasions that have the opportunity to put pressure on us to do something we may or may not wish to do. How we handle those situations defines the amount of pressure we feel, and how much stress that pressure actually causes us.

People always want you to do something, and whatever it is, the request is usually the best thing for them instead of being the best for you. They want your money for the course, or they want your time for a project, or they want your endorsement so they can use the people who look up to you.

The best way you can minimize your stress is to be genuinely you. This does not mean saying no to everything. Weigh the pros and cons that you perceive the request will garner for you. Please, do not be afraid to say no, or to say yes. Take time to weigh everything against your desires and the destinations that you have mapped in life.

Whatever your answer is will be correct as long as you do right by yourself and your plan to grow through life. You could explain to the other party why you made your decision and please remember you absolutely do not have to give that explanation if you don’t want to.

The choice is yours. Yet any agreement without full understanding is usually misguided. Take time to think things through. Make sure you know all the demands that are being asked of you and try to understand what the positive and negative consequences could be within the agreement.

Have a great day and thank you for being here. I truly understand that this is a choice that you have freely made. And, I appreciate it.

I hope to be with you again tomorrow.

 

 

 

Only What You Need

Have you started a business? Congratulations! You are about to have more friends than you ever knew existed. They’re not really there to buy your products, they are there to sell you something. And to top it off, they have seminars, webinars, teleconferences and email funnels that will explain to you exactly why you cannot live without what it is they want to sell you.

It’s your job to look in the mirror, and ask yourself, “Do I really need this? Can I really afford this? Will it really do what they say it will do?”

Do not let yourself or anyone else push you into a decision for something your business is not quite ready to use or even afford. Let your business pull you in. Purchase what the company needs when you have to have the item for better Return on Investment (ROI).

If you have ever read about Value Stream Mapping, you know that there are push systems and pull systems. You see this when you go to different fast food establishments. In some fast food restaurants, they push French fries by making them often, whether somebody is there to purchase or not.  They end up with old fries that have to be tossed, and the establishment loses money because of it. On the other hand, other restaurants use a pull system where they cook the French fries when someone is there to buy them.  They save money and have customers who come back for the fresh fries.

If you run a push system for people or things that are not present, you find yourself always spending money. It’s very possible to go broke fast using that system, having to pay for software, offices, employees, and other items sitting on the shelves and going stale before you have the demand you need to utilize them. The trick is to run the business as it stands now. Be ready to move forward when the time comes.

Let the business pay for what it needs.  If something is necessary to keep making money, let the business pay for it. 

 

 

 

Work With What You Have

If you have a business idea, you do not have to go out and spend a bundle of money you don’t have to get it off the ground. Start small and work with what you have. The worst thing you can do is figure that you’re going to have infrastructure immediately for 1,000 customers or 10,000 followers or be building four classes and writing five books a year.

You will probably get there. Yet, if you study the people who actually build their business, you will find that the first 2 to 3 years start off with minimal numbers, and it takes a while (years) to actually grow to the numbers you want. In the meantime, you don’t want to be paying out-of-pocket for resources that you don’t need and won’t use until year three or four of your business.

Use what you have.  Most computers and laptops these days are strong enough to support a startup business. If you use Microsoft, you have built-in AI such as Dictation and Read Aloud. I use this for everything from dictating my blogs to listening to business e-books. Many free or inexpensive programs make running a business more manageable for you.

Training does not have to be thousands of dollars for e-courses to start.  Find some good mentors or possibly a reasonably priced coach, depending on what you can afford.  Make your budget affordable and stay within that budget. The two best business builders you can accomplish are actually very inexpensive. Be yourself, be genuine and make friends. The rest will happen naturally.

I know this sounds simple. Please, look at me as a voice who is learned through the college of hard knocks. When you’re building a new business simplicity is precisely what you want.

Hope to be with you again tomorrow.