4 Common (and Totally Wrong!) Marketing Assumptions Small-Business Owners Make

1) People respond to advertising no matter what your business is.

Advertising is not the same thing as marketing. Advertising is one kind of marketing. I have some clients for whom ads – in newspapers, on the backs of city busses – are absolutely the way to go. I have many more clients for whom such efforts would be a total waste of money.

2) People respond to marketing quickly.

Small-business owners often expect instantaneous results when they do any sort of marketing. Do your first-ever postcard mailing on Monday, see new customers walk through the door by Friday. Not likely. Marketing efforts must be consistent and long-term before you see any results at all. Think about this: It takes people an average of three times to remember a new piece of information when they hear it – such as someone’s name. Why would anyone think a one-time marketing effort gets people’s attention any faster?

3) People respond to marketing rationally.

“But people need my product/service!” Maybe they do. But people often make purchasing decisions based on emotion, not logic.. and think only of what they want, rather than what they really need. This is why it is so important to make the personal connection with people you want to do business with.

4) People respond to whatever is new.

Not really, unless they are completely trend-driven – and those are not the kinds of customers that ensure long-term growth for anyone’s bottom line. People respond to a good deal. And a good deal means good quality at a reasonable price. Don’t market your small business as new – just as different from what the competition (new or established) has to offer.