One day, about a year ago, I walked into our kitchen to pour a glass of water. I turned on the kitchen faucet and instead of getting a glass full of nice cool water, I got to see the faucet launch itself across the kitchen like a laser-guided surface to air missile. Luckily, when it slammed into the wall (at the other end of the kitchen) it didn’t explode like a missile.
Unluckily, the “faucet missile” was followed by a stream of water that would have made any fire fighter proud. It shot clear across the room and soaked everything in it’s path, including me, the telephone and one of our dogs.
So, rather than enjoy that much-anticipated cool and refreshing glass of water, I found myself making an emergency visit to Home Depot for a new faucet. And I got to unleash my much-maligned (and under utilized) home maintenance skills for the next several hours.
I could have complained that “they just don’t make faucets they way they used to” and gotten angry at the darn thing for disrupting my day.
But I knew better.
You see the faucet had been showing signs of impending failure. It had been dripping for awhile. And, it had other problems that made it clear the faucet would need service soon.
So the mess in the kitchen and the disruption to my day were, in truth, my own fault.
Our businesses can be the same way.
Often we only deal with issues when they become problems. And they’ve become problems because we ignored them when they were merely signs.
This happens in all areas of business but the worst (and often most common) is when it happens to our sales and marketing. When we have a sales and marketing problem it’s not good. Because it means we also have a revenue problem.
What’s a business owner (or manager) to do?
One of the best ways to avoid sales and marketing problems is to view your marketing as a process rather than a project. Big companies tend to do this already. But too many small businesses don’t.
The scariest words I hear small business people say are:
“I’d do more marketing if I had the money”.
A close second is:
“I’m too busy to even think of doing any marketing.”
As a result they only focus on marketing when they have the money or the time.
The problem is when they have the money they don’t have the time. And when they have the time they don’t have the money.
The solution is this:
Make your marketing as important as your rent, your payroll, your taxes and everything else you pay to keep your doors open.
Remember, marketing is not a luxury.
And it’s not a guest that spends time with you every now and then.
To be most effective your marketing needs to be a permanent member of your team.