Like it or not, people draw conclusions about you and your business by the way you look and the quality of your marketing materials. If you cut corners in the image department, your business will suffer.
We Live In a DIY World
As a small business owner or solo-professional, you're probably working on a tight budget. And, it's pretty easy these days to do everything yourself.
It's definitely not like it was when I started out in the advertising business 21 years ago! That was before desktop publishing and all the online services that are now available.
If you wanted business cards, letterhead, a brochure, or any other type of marketing materials, you pretty much had to pay a graphic designer to create them for you.
While that definitely was harder on your pocketbook than the “Do-it-Yourself" you-can-find-or-create-anything-on-the-Internet world we now live in, it did help protect the image of the small business owner.
You Can Find DIY Resources For Just About Anything
You can design and print your own business cards and letterhead online, create your own website, design and publish your own e-newsletter, and even distribute your own press releases worldwide at the push of a button.
While this definitely makes a small budget go farther, there is a downside.
But Is Your Marketing Or Business Suffering?
When you can easily create and implement your own marketing materials and ideas, and it doesn't require a big investment, sometimes the planning and forethought that should go into these activities gets sacrificed.
Because if it doesn't work, you're really not out all that much.
Or are you?
The problem with this approach is that it forgets one important point: Even if your pocketbook doesn't suffer, your IMAGE does. I'm all for DIY marketing, in fact it's what I teach in The 10stepmarketing System.
Just make sure you understand what you're doing and you take the time to plan out your actions.
And recognize when you're not very good at something and pay someone else to do it for you or at least to coach or help you.
Believe me, in the long run, it will cost you a lot less.
Take a good hard look at your current marketing materials. Your business cards. Your letterhead. Your website. Your brochure.
Do they represent you and your business in a way you're proud of?
What image are you portraying? Take a good, hard, honest look.
Ask yourself if you were you trying to cut costs and if your marketing materials really show it.
Or, if you have plans to create marketing materials in the near future, have you taken the time to develop a strong marketing strategy for those materials?
A marketing plan and well-thought-out strategy should precede the development of ANY marketing materials.
Be sure to protect the image of your business and take the time to create that marketing plan, first. And, if you're not confident you can create professional marketing materials the DIY way, be sure to hire a professional to help you.
Debbie LaChusa created The 10stepmarketing System to make marketing your own business as simple as answering 10 questions. Learn more about this unique, step-by-step system and get a free Marketing E-Course when you subscribe to the free, weekly 10stepmarketing Ezine at http://www.10stepmarketing.com