This is the time of year when small local business owners are trying to cram a little learning between the summer season and the Holiday Season.
You may be signing up for workshops on how to market on Facebook, or how to improve the SEO of your website.
Or you might, feeling a little behind the times, be sneaking into a workshop to help you understand a little more about internet marketing.
Before you put money into any of these internet marketing trainings, I’d ask you to consider, “What is my goal for doing this?”
A favorite blogger of mine, Brian Solis, wrote about a study of the answer to this question given by chief marketing officers of major corporations, and discovered that they are as confused about the internet marketing revolution as you are.
In this article, CMO’s are at the Crossroads of Customer Transactions and Engagement, there is a list of the top things that are keeping CMO’s (chief marketing officers) up at night.
The top three things on the list, “data explosion”, “social media” and “growth of channel and device choices” are about the technology!
They’re the things that are also worrying you, and are probably the main reasons you are signing up for those internet marketing workshops!
A little over 50% of those surveyed are concerned about “customer collaboration and influence.” Amazing!! This is the crux of the revolution and most CMO’s are worrying about the technology?!?
What does all this have to do with you, a small local business owner just trying to get by?
The Truth that is driving the current revolution and causing The End of Business As Usual, (the title of Brian Solis’s new book) is that in every way, the customer is now in the driver’s seat.
They are giving up “brand loyalty” because their choices have exploded with access to the internet.
They stopped depending on advertising because they have a zillion “friends” online who they trust more.
They have given up traditional forms of getting information in favor of online sources that put them in the driver’s seat.
If your solution to this, like corporate CMO’s is to worry about your Facebook presence FIRST, you are missing the point as completely as they are!
The point is that everything you do online has got to start with your customer. Your Perfect Customer. The one who pays your bills who you wish you had a 100 or 1000 more just like.
The thing that has me so danged excited for you about internet marketing is that you already are a million times more customer focused than big business.
You talk to your Perfect Customer everyday. You know his or her kids. You attend their son’s football games. Your daughter is on the swim team with their kids. You see everybody at Back to School Night!
Brian Solis’ book title should have been, The End of BIG Business As Usual.
Big business has a long way to go to truly understand the revolutionary possibilities that the internet and inbound marketing offer.
You, on the other hand, already know that everything is about your customer.
You need to be doing internet marketing, but you have the luxury of starting where you already are – with your customer.
So, before you attend that Facebook workshop, or decide to set up a Twitter account, or spend a zillion dollars on a fancy website with flash animation, go back to your roots and be sure that everything you do gets you closer to the people who pay your bills, your Perfect Customer.
NOTE: We’re getting closer! Take Control of Your Internet Marketing membership site will be rolling out soon. You’re going to love this internet marketing training. It’s cheap, with short, simple, doable lessons that start you where you already are – with your customer.
Here are some past post detailing some internet marketing details:
Photo on Flickr by Paul Haahr