22 July 2009

5 Marketing Lessons from Getting My Deck Rebuilt

1. Over-protective preparation may be a waste of time, but will make you feel more in control of the chaos.
  • They told me to cover all my electronics, so I bought huge plastic bags and encased everything, then I sealed all the windows with plastic sheeting to keep construction dust out. Probably a bit over the top, eh? LOL
  • In marketing, solopreneurs often think that more is better -- it's not. Do only what is needed for the purpose you are aiming at. But you won't be sorry if you take the time to hone your marketing message and develop your marketing plan to it's highest potential effectiveness.
2. Making big noise is okay -- do it early in the day, in small bursts, then take an early lunch, and quit at 3 pm.
  • Workers are hammering and drilling and sawing and banging on the walls at 7 am. Oy! That's practically like the middle of the night for me. But they are efficient, the sounds have variety, it doesn't last long, and they are done early.
  • Marketing is effective when it makes some big noise to get your prospective clients' attention. It's even more effective when it makes the right kind of noise, using various approaches, in limited doses, then respects the clients' ability to make their own choices.
3. Take frequent breaks -- work a little, get coffee, work in a different area, confer with colleagues, work some more, rest, etc
  • Frequent breaks allow for proper pacing of the job, while conserving personal energy. Corrective consultation, new directions, a little social interaction, all make the work go faster and be more pleasant.
  • Self-promotion becomes over-bearing when endless. Clients hate the constant sales pitch, and you don't get useful feedback and input from colleagues. Better to pace yourself, evaluate results, make changes, and come at it again.
4. Be careful about promising a timeline or a specific result.
  • I think it's a genetic pre-requisite to be in the building trades to never guarantee how long things will take or exactly what it will look like when it's done. Ever try getting a firm answer from a contractor? Forget it.
  • A coach might argue there is an accountability issue here, but there is a good lesson too in not setting up expectations that can't be met. Novice self-employed marketers in the healing arts will do well to perfect how to be accountable without inflating unrealistic expectations with their marketing message.
5. Ultimately, it won't be as awful as you imagined -- the disruption won't be as bad or as unrelenting as you may have expected.
  • Being used to an exceptionally quiet work environment, I imagined needing alternative office space for the 3 weeks or more this construction may take. I fled the premises yesterday with my laptop and cell phone. Today, with my desktop computer unbagged, I've barely noticed the work outside my office door.
  • Marketing is an unfamiliar activity for many self-employed business owners. You might imagine all sorts of hassles, challenges, and results that never manifest. Putting yourself in the experience of it is the only way to know for certain how to work around the frustrations.

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1 comment:

Iris Arenson-Fuller said...

As always, I am applauding Coach Deah and her ability to turn a hardship into a worthwhile learning and teaching experience.