Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Marketing takes time

One of the more interesting comments I hear from entrepreneurs often involves some marketing effort that they undertook - whether it's a direct mailer, an advertisement in a magazine, or even a networking group that they belong to. Whenever they mention it, it's always in terms of results gained in a short period of time.

"I sent out a mailer last year and only got three calls from it. I'll never do that again."

"We placed an ad in this magazine and only got one call from it. We'll never do that again."

The challenge with any marketing activity - no matter what it is - is that it takes time and repetition to work. If you have a blog, you have to update it (no comments from the peanut gallery, please). If you do a mailing, you have to repeat it. If you run an ad, you have to run it again - and again - and again - to get the results you want. If you join a networking group, you have to go a few times; be noticed, be engaging.

This is one of the reasons that, as entrepreneurs with (sometimes) limited funds, techniques like blogging, e-mail newsletters and online/in-person networking can be so valuable. Any marketing activity has to be done again and again to work; but these techniques have the advantage of a significantly lower cash outlay - and often, they're significantly more effective.

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