I’ve been dealing with a lot of small to medium sized businesses and successful entrepreneurs; and I love seeing how they operate. While my company SMP runs their social media campaigns, including strategizing, I’m often see but don’t get to say much about other parts of their marketing, such as their tag line, the navigation on the website, the layout of their advertisements and such.
Often, as is in life, things are meant to be simple (perhaps not easy). Sometimes marketing can be the simplest thing – just talking about what your business is or what it does. Nevertheless, often people make it complicated and miss their mark.
Many years ago in Mexico my great, great aunt was a seamstress. She had confessed that she’d turned her suitors away and wound up single and having to earn some money for herself. So, she designed and sewed clothes for people and she was damn good at it!
Perhaps because I’m thinking about a client tonight who is very successful with her first business and is now struggling with a second, I thought of my aunt Ursula. She really was an amazing seamstress and I got to wondering why she didn’t ever have a “tiendita” a corner shop in Mexico city with employees and a few known designs. Why was she just a home-based one-woman show and not a successful entrepreneur? Was it because she didn’t want something more or was it that, like many proprietorships, she didn’t see the possibility to be bigger?
Truly being my grandmother’s aunt, she lived to be 90 but being a couple generations behind, I was only 21 when she passed away. So, the mystery will remain.
What Most Successful Entrepreneurs Do
However, what most successful entrepreneurs do and what most unsuccessful owners don’t do is no mystery. Whether they know it or not, the successful business people tend to live by and operate according to many spiritual principals, such as the laws of abundance, their embracing of failure and their ability to discern between a poor risk and a smart leap of faith.
For starters, let me tell you about one great flow they tap into: they believe in themselves. John Lenon of the Beatles said ‘we knew we were the best band in the world, we just had to wait for the world to figure it out.’ Was he arrogant?
Arrogance in business sometimes works, but how well and for how long is unpredictable. Authentic self-confidence or faith in something unknown tends to build upon itself and expand any business. John Lennon had the later, which is one reason he also had an endless supply of music to create.
In your business it is important that you recognize your own strengths and weaknesses; it is important that you are in touch with these both. Your marketing must draw upon your strengths and the unique product or service you offer. No one is perfect, nor is any business, so embrace your weaknesses and work on improving these.
No doubt, the most successful entrepreneurs appear to have no weaknesses, but this is an illusion. Everyone has problems and every business has issues with their product, their client and so on. One difference between the home-based business that can’t get a true clientele going or grow enough to move out of the house is that the owner isn’t handling mistakes well. I’m sure John Lennon, while thinking he had the best band in the world, didn’t think they played perfectly every time.
Self-confidence, as they say, is contagious and it is a bug your client’s want to catch. I’ve never heard of a client asking if my company (or any other’s) was perfect. However, perspective clients are always listening very attentively when we describe what we do and how. Consciously they are listening to our words, but sub-consciously they are watching and measuring the energy behind the words. They are deciding whether we can really do what we say, based on our marketing materials, the tone in our voice, how we answer questions and the knowledge that comes across in the conversation.
Since every meeting with every client is different, there is no formula for getting this “right”. The only ‘formula’ would be to have the confidence within. The only way to hope to grow your business, no matter what size it is now, is to know that you are capable of this. Old-fashioned customer service and the ability to truly be an expert are coming back around in this Age of Authenticity.
Know yourself, know your product or service and your ability to be a successful entrepreneur won’t be out of reach. Your marketing won’t be either, since you’ll know what to say about your offerings. If confidence, your strengths or your weaknesses elude you, find yourself a good business mentor, someone who can help you shift your perceptions. While there are a lot of business coaches out there, always measure who you are considering because you want the one who knows how to be a successful entrepreneur and can show you the way.