The worst kind of decision in business is indecision.
Just the other day, I was at lunch with some business owners. One of them mentioned his goals this year is to get caught up with technology – something he’s been overwhelmed by for years. It’s not uncommon for some people to be a little technology averse. I’ve even come across a business owner who told me if I needed to have his email address in order to do business with him, he wasn’t going to put an ad in the phone book I used to manage sales for. But, when a business fails to keep pace with certain technologies, it could prove a serious disadvantage to them. A significant example of this would be Kodak disgarding digital photography in its early years, rather than apply their expertise in photography in general to improving and taking the lead. In fact, if you had come to me about 15 years ago and started talking about websites and programming, even at the most elementary level, I would have been completely lost. For many people, talking about this industry of online presence could be much like speaking a foreign language – or Vulcan, as one of my not-so-tech-savvy friends calls it.
Several years ago, I had a conversation with a business owner who was quite frank about his situation with me. With his outlook on the economy, he expressed doubt and frustration to me regarding his struggles. He asked me if it was even worth continuing his business. With the changes in government, recession and years of struggling to keep things afloat, he didn’t know how to or even if he could keep his business operating. He had a phone number. He had a website. He had a small office. He had a stagnating number of customers. What he didn’t have was a marketing plan.
Marketing isn't one of those things a business gets to do when they've 'arrived'. It's the fuel that drives the journey.
Peter Drucker, coined the “creator and inventor of modern management”, once wrote:
Because the purpose of business is to create a customer, the business enterprise has two—and only two—basic functions: marketing and innovation. Marketing and innovation produce results; all the rest are costs.
With all the advances in technology in reaching your target audience, has your business been on hold when it comes to
- improving your website?
- starting online marketing?
- expanding your product/service offerings?
- branching out your business?
As a business owner, there are already many hats required to wear. While you might be the expert in innovating your products/services, understanding how to promote them with today’s technology might be somewhat overwhelming. If tax laws changed, you’re likely to consult with an accountant. If business laws changed, you might consult with a good attorney. Perhaps 2015 is the year to work with an agency that understands where your business can benefit from modern marketing to help bridge the gap between you and your potential customers.