So often, business owners tend to view the whole “web site management and marketing” game as just that – a game. We engage in SWOT analysis because we want to analysis our strengths and weaknesses as well as the strengths and weaknesses of our competitors. Our web site management and marketing plans are all focused on what happens in the the “end zone” – what words are our customers using to find our products and services. We want to fool ourselves into thinking that our customers are rational. We want to tell ourselves that our customers are approaching the buying decision with a checklist – and the first company to successfully meet the criteria will “win” the sale. This mindset is a sure fire way to make sure you settle for less than success in your business.
Instead, the smart business owner’s web site management and marketing strategy will focus on the journey your prospective customers are taking as they meander along life’s path.
For example, let’s say you’re a a registered dietitian who wants to start a offering your services as a nutritional coach. It’s a great “marriage” of services so to speak – because motivation is a HUGE part of encouraging good nutritional habits. Your role as a dietitian is to provide information meanwhile your role as coach is to provide motivation. I mean, no one is going to eat hemp bagels because they are so tasty! No, you eat hemp bagels because they are NUTRITIOUS! A coach is going to help you find the motivation to eat hemp bagels after you discover they won’t get you “high”.
So, you’re a nutrition coach who wants to find clients for your practice. A blog is a GREAT marketing tool for you to use to build your practice. It’s a great tool in the authentic pursuit of making money. However, you have to blog with your prospective customers or clients in mind.
For example, in the case of the nutritional coach – trust me, if you focus on targeting people who are searching for hemp bagels – well, you’ve missed the boat. If you’re blogging to reach those people for your practice, blogging may not be the best use of your time. Anyone searching for hemp bagels already POSSESSES the necessary “motivation” – no, you need to find customers or clients who are struggling. You need people who want to believe that Fiber Pop-Tarts are the answer to better nutrition.
See, there’s a wake up call in the future of the “dietary deluded”. In some cases, it’s going to be handed to them at a doctor’s office with the results of their blood work. In others, it’s going to be delivered in the cardiac care unit.
Your goal, as the nutritional coach should be to reach those prospective clients before the wake up call is issued. If you – as the nutritional coach- had a web site management and marketing plan in place (a.k.a. a blog) where you were capturing the attention of the “dietary deluded” you could do just that.
That’s why I spend most of my time “pounding” the never ending beat on the “target your audience” drum. When you know who your target audience is, it’s easier to reach them BEFORE they begin searching. As a matter of fact, there’s no possible way to reach them before they start searching if you don’t know what they’re doing BEFORE they start searching!
Reaching your customers before they begin searching for solutions is the high road. Learn more about how to do that by picking up a copy of my book, Beyond the Niche: Essential Tools You Need to Create Marketing Messages that Deliver Results.