Your 10 minute marketing plan

February 2, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

view from horseback of a dusty trail following other riders

Recently a friend mentioned that she relied only on word-of-mouth to promote her business, and maybe she needed to try something more. I offered to give her some ideas. After I finished writing, I thought this might be useful for other people, too.

This is kind of a paper napkin marketing plan—that cliche of business. It’s the basics, quick and dirty. There is lots of information available, and you can ask me, too.

I view marketing as common sense, but from the point of view of the people you are trying to attract. When we get outside our own assumptions, jargon, embarrassment about talking about what we love to do, or however we cut ourselves off from communicating with potential clients or people who might know potential clients, there is lots of room to experiment and explore appealing ways to reach out to and attract people to learn about what we do. Read more

The other 90 percent

June 5, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

frightened horse showing the whites of his eyes

Less than 10% of communication is verbal according to Dr. Albert Mehrabian, author of Silent Messages. While we do have to get the words right, we have to get the rest of it right if we want to communicate in ways that build trust and credibility — essential qualities in healthy relationships and effective relationship marketing.

Besides words, our tone of voice, facial expressions, gestures, and posture all broadcast what we feel, even if we are not speaking about it directly. We continually send, receive, and respond to non-verbal messages. Children and animals are masters at reading these messages. All of us have had times when we notice someone saying one thing while using contradictory body language. It is usually not very pleasant. Read more

The metaphysics of marketing

April 22, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Rope, blanket, flaxen mane against a sorrel horse's shoulder

This principle is how marketing works. I’ve observed it over and over again, but never more starkly than in the following story.

My client, a small engineering firm, wanted to do more work with architecture firms, and we had just developed and printed a new brochure designed to appeal to architects. (This was before the predominance of electronic media.)

After the brochures had been mailed, the principal and his two project managers decided to cold call a number of the architects they had mailed to. We wrote call scripts and role played making phone calls. They plugged away at their call lists, but the results were not exactly encouraging.

Then an interesting thing happened. Read more

Every business tells a story – what’s yours?

November 9, 2011 by · 4 Comments 

two horses neck and neck at the finish line of a race

They say, “Every picture tells a story.” So does every business. But is it a story you tell on purpose to attract your ideal clients?

Great experience, qualifications, prestigious awards—these open conversations, gain attention, and establish credibility, but alone they rarely win a new client.

The changing economy requires all of us to get smarter about our marketing and sales, and to use all the tools in our marketing toolbox. Read more

How Seth Godin inspired this post

September 15, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

3 horses viewed through leaves and overhanging branches of a tree

This summer I had the opportunity to see Seth Godin in person. I loved him. Not only is he one very smart guy, his values and integrity shone through everything he said. Hear him talk about his most recent book, Poke the Box, an 85-page call to action. I highly recommend it.

Seth Godin’s recent post “Talents and Vendors” struck a chord with me that resonates with my clients as well. Even before the recession, some of my professional service clients felt pressure to sell their services as a commodity, for the lowest price. This is heartbreaking for someone who has devoted their career to practicing high value services such as engineering or architecture. Read more