Marketing in Your Daily Life!
What do you think is the most common complaint I hear from my coaching clients – entrepreneur wellness practitioners?
“I don’t have time for marketing!”
When you run your own business and you wear all the hats – client care, business management, marketing, sales, cleaning and errands – time becomes your most precious commodity. With so many priorities, it’s no wonder that marketing often takes a back seat!
But it’s crucial to the success of your practice that you make time for marketing, regardless of what phase your business is in – start-up or established. Marketing is the lifeblood of your business. It’s your primary tool for attracting and keeping clients!
24 hours a day often just doesn’t seem like enough time to fit in all that you need and want to do. While “getting it all done” may be a myth or an unattainable goal, there is a way to maximize the time available to you – it’s called Everyday Marketing.
The answer is not to find more time for marketing, because we can’t add more hours to the day. So the trick is to put more marketing into your time. You can effectively combine marketing with your other activities. Every day, we do time-consuming things that don’t include marketing. Although I don’t usually advocate multi-tasking, there are easy ways to combine marketing with things you’re already doing, without compromising the effectiveness of either activity. Here are some examples:
– Workshops, business meetings, networking and cultural events. Invite a business contact or potential client to join you. This will contribute to building a stronger relationship between the two of you. It will give you an opportunity to get better acquainted in a more relaxed way. With a colleague, you can explore opportunities to work together in a joint venture that could benefit both your businesses. With potential clients, they have an opportunity to see a broader view of your professionalism, knowledge and expertise, outside of your office.
– Lunch or coffee with a prospect or colleague. If you are already planning to meet up with someone, invite a third or fourth person to join you. With more people, it feels like a fun social event, but of course you can still accomplish your business mission. Everyone invited has an opportunity to make new contacts, you have more people to educate about your work, and you may find that group conversation sparks new ideas and creativity! – Traveling. Arrange to meet for lunch or dinner with a client, prospect or colleague. On a business trip, this is usually more enjoyable than eating alone. As a tourist, a meal you would be eating anyway takes no time out of your vacation schedule, plus you may get local tips about where to go, while making a sale or enrolling a new client.
– Go take a hike! Meetings with business associates don’t have to take place in an office or restaurant. Invite someone to join you for a run around the track, a gym workout or a game of tennis. I’ve gotten a few great clients on my morning walk around the ‘hood! Once I even got a joint venture opportunity that led to several new long-term clients. Not all business deals are made in an office or on the phone – golf courses are famous as business meeting venues! Get exercise, have fun and get clients at the same time!
– Doing errands. Talk to strangers! Strike up a conversation while waiting in line at the bank or grocery store. Start with a casual comment about the weather or having to wait in line. Steer the conversation toward the other person – their interests, hobbies, job. If you ask someone what they do for a living, chances are they will reciprocate by asking you the same question. This gives you a perfect opportunity to say something interesting about your work. For example, instead of saying simply, “I do massage,” you could say “I help people overcome pain so they can function better in their life.” They will naturally ask how you do that. So tell them and offer them your business card or introductory coupon. In fact, give them two – one to use and one to share.
– Reading an article. Keep your eye out for articles that might interest your colleagues, clients or prospects. Take a moment to write a quick “Thought this would interest you” note and make a big impression on the recipients. While forwarding emails and links is increasingly popular, receiving postal mail really gets people’s attention. It’s more personal and impresses people that you take the time to send them something of personal interest.
– Social events. The best business relationships often begin socially. Make sure to take biz cards everywhere you go – for example, when you attend a wedding, a party or sports event – even your child’s soccer game. After starting with small talk – “How do you know our hosts?” or “Which child is yours?” – make your next question, “What do you do?” Their natural follow-up will be to ask you the same question, giving you a golden opportunity for a little friendly marketing: “I help people overcome pain…´
– Relaxing. You may have a long list of marketing projects that will take time but not your full attention. Consider doubling up these mundane tasks with a fun activity or some pleasant company. I listen to my coach’s teleseminars on the beach after my morning swim! Enter business cards to your contact list at the pool. Make phone calls from the hot tub or a park bench. Review your prospect list while watching a DVD or listening to music. Bribe (oops – I mean, pay!) your kids to help you stuff and stamp envelopes. Take your project to a friend’s house so the two of you can work together on marketing over a cup of tea.
As you can see, there are many ways to include marketing in your busy life. We can’t add more hours to the day. So instead of wishing you had more time for marketing, why not include marketing into the time you already spend on errands, chores, travel, family time and social life! Maximize your time by combining marketing with your daily activities!