Setting goals is challenging for many people because they've had more experience at failing to achieve a goal, than they have of successful achievement. Therefore, if the idea of setting goals makes you wince, relax and read on. You'll discover a new way of setting goals which will inspire you.
=> Set little goals at first: start small
Set small goals. Small goals are achievable, and they're not intimidating. Setting small goals, and achieving them, gives you confidence. Each day you will improve your writing skills, and you will learn more about how to market.
Setting small goals applies whether you're a beginner, or a pro.
1. Your first goal: Market - RIGHT NOW
Aim to market every day. Your marketing effort for the day may be simple: you may send a stay-in-touch email message to a client you haven’t spoken to for a month.
Maybe you spot a new potential market, and you send them a quick note, telling them something about your business, yourself, and your current clients.
If you're just starting out, please don’t let this faze you. Play up your beginner's status. People will help you if you give them the chance.
I fit my marketing in around whatever else I'm doing. I take my handheld computer with me when I'm out and about. If I'm stuck waiting in line at the Post Office, I spend the time downloading my email, and dashing off a quick note to a client I haven't contacted this past month.
If I'm at the library, I browse through the business directories in the Reference section. This takes less than five minutes, and I always come away with at least five new agencies, or five new businesses to contact.
If you make marketing part of your everyday life, it doesn’t seem like such a chore. Nor do you get hung up on whether people respond to a email message, or a message you've left on their voice mail. People often don’t respond, unless they have work for you immediately.
Here's a funny/ tragic story. I was communicating with a prospective copywriting client, who owned a gardening center, in Perth, which is 5000 miles away, on the other side of Australia. I'd been chatting to and fro with him via email for about a year. He had plans to revamp the copy on his Web site, send out some news releases, and much more. Finally he sent me an email to tell me that he was going out of business. He couldn’t pay his staff or his suppliers. He'd been hoping his business would turn the corner, but it hadn’t.
Although I didn’t do any writing for him, I did form a relationship with him. This is the kind of relationship you need to form with as many potential clients as you can. Even if your prospect has no work for you right away, stay in touch. Contact them every month or two. Be interested in them and their business.
When they need whatever it is that you do, you'll be the person they call. You'll also find that your prospects will pass on your contact details to others - so communicate, a little and often. :-)
2. Your second goal: Get known - promote
Many business owners are “hit and run" marketers. This procedure won’t help you to build a business. You're selling to people, and people buy from those whom they know and trust.
This means that to sell to a market, you first need to become known to a market. Yes, you can get extremely lucky, and may make a sale the first time you contact a particular market. You can’t count on it happening every day, and depending on luck is no way to build a business.
Send out a news release at least once a month. Get your name out there.
3. Your third goal: commit to your marketing campaign
Being committed to marketing means exactly that. It means that like Nike, you just do it.
I read a profile of Mary Kay Ash, the cosmetics queen. When she was starting her business, and for many years thereafter, she was always the last person to leave the office. Long after others had left, she'd been busy making just one more marketing phone call.
This is the spirit you need to aim for in your marketing efforts. Make just one more phone call. Send just one more email message. Every day.
Whatever your business, you won’t succeed unless you make it a habit to do some marketing every day. Start small, set tiny achievable marketing goals like those I've suggested. If you do that, your business will be a success.
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