It has been a really interesting journey since setting up Coo Marketing in May 08. As many of you know, my specialism before hand had been big brand marketing and adding millions to the bottom line of household brands. My passion has always been to help smaller businesses and entrepreneurs realize their ambition to grow brands and businesses however, so it has been a journey that I am thoroughly enjoying!
What has struck me most is that the defenses go up when you talk about marketing to so many smaller businesses & I want to put a couple of things straight. Marketing ideas need not cost lots of money! Honestly! Just getting your head around a few marketing concepts can prevent you pouring hard earned money down the drain. I guess it goes back to the misunderstanding of what marketing really is. Some people see it simply as getting a flashy website, a glossy brochure and some snazzy letterheads. Sure, they all have a part to play but what is most important is what your objective is so lets go back to basics for a minute…
After dedicating years of study to getting a Masters Degree in the subject and devoted blood sweat and tears building household brands such as Thirst Pockets and Vimto – it suddenly struck me that marketing can be boiled down to a couple of principles….
1. You must add value to your product or service or you will not survive
2. Marketing is about communicating that added value
3. That’s it – Simple huh! (& what a waste of education I hear you shout!)
OK, before I talk my profession out of work completely, there are thousands of tricks and techniques to make these things happen but in a nut shell you have to start at the beginning and work out the basics & this need not cost any money at all. Take the time to consider the basics. Why are you creating that website? What should your business cards be saying about you? Why do you not have as many customers as you would like?
The moral of the story is this. Before you reach in your pocket to fix all your marketing problems with something glossy – STOP! Take a bit of time to take stock and challenge yourself as to why you are doing what you are doing. Go back to basics & invest the time in thinking about your business before spending money on marketing. You will be amazed how far you can get by not spending anything at all…Remember: Get into the marketing mindset before you get out the wallet. Bet you were not expecting me to tell you that!
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