As a business owner, you’re always looking for shortcuts and ways to make the most money possible for your marketing and advertising dollars. This is a very smart business strategy that sometimes leads to you failing to look at what’s right in front of you.
You probably have a marketing campaign, or something in your business that has worked well for you in the past, that you have not gone back to, or that you have stopped doing, that would bring in some pretty quick money to your business, without a lot of work on your part, but you ignore it, forget about it, or just stop doing it.
Recently, a business associate did just that, and it almost cost him his business.
As business owners, we have busy times and slower times in our businesses that we try to account for with our marketing efforts. This business owner, known here as Jay, was struggling and needed some help, so after a short conversation and seeing that he was in a bit of a panic, I asked him what he had in his business that had worked in the past, that had brought in a good return, that we could quickly implement and get his some relief from his current lack of cash flow situation.
Jay proceeded to tell me about a great direct mail campaign that he had used for several years in his business that averaged a 12:1 return on investment for him. He had stopped using it and was now struggling to stay afloat.
Surprisingly, my suggestion to go pull this highly successful campaign off the shelf and start using it again immediately, if not sooner, was met with a less than enthusiastic response. As a matter of fact, the whole idea got shelved for another solution – Jay chose to do nothing and almost lost his business.
Jay’s resistance to beginning to use this highly successful campaign again was based on one thing and one thing only… the fact that he didn’t have any money. Jay was so close to his situation, he couldn’t see the possibility of borrowing a few hundred dollars from a friend or family member, even with the promise of a short term loan of 60 to 90 days, with a 10-30% return.
There were really 2 issues at work here in Jay’s situation. First, he couldn’t see the forest for the trees, because he was standing in the middle of it. He really, simply couldn’t get out of his own way. He so was consumed with panic, stress and anxiety because he let his situation get so far out of control before he asked for help, that he was frozen in fear, and simply failed to move. He failed to implement in his business, even when it would have been relatively simple to do. He was frozen by fear.
The other issue here, was Jay stopped doing what had worked in the past.
At some point, it seems all business owners fall prey to this. We either forget about the campaigns, or more likely, we get bored with them ourselves, and just assume that everyone has already seen it, and they’re tired of it too.
Things become old and tired to you because you know your business so very well, and you deal with it day in and day out. You forget that your clients and prospects have busy lives too, and they will ultimately forget about you if you don’t stay in front of them.
Unfortunately, for most of us who own businesses, our clients think about us a lot less than we’d like them too, so the possibility of them remembering that you sent them something last month is relatively low, and them remembering exactly what you sent them is an even lower possibility.
The smart choice here is to let your marketing tell you when it’s time to look for a new campaign or something to replace, and out pull the one you’re currently running. You know you have reached that point when your response rates begin to consistently fall off.
So, don’t be like Jay! Use the marketing materials you have that have been successful in the past and keep growing your business – today and always!