How would it feel to have a line of customers waiting desperately to buy from you? Only you.
There is no other place where they can get what you have to offer. And they want what you have. So they wait.
It’s totally possible…
But it’s not going to happen.
Not if you’re just like everyone else. Not if you keep doing what you’ve been doing.
Let me explain:
LittleMissMatched sells bright, colorful socks in packs of three. Not pairs. Mismatched.
The Cheese Board Collective serves only one type of pizza each day, and it’s vegetarian. No choosing toppings. No meat.
Venel is the nation’s only marketing and communications firm that works exclusively with orthopaedics.
I’m no mind-reader, but the odds are pretty good that these businesses aren’t catering to you. You’re not their target market.
Now, describe your business in 15 words or less.
Go ahead. Type it out or write down.
Is it obvious who your target market is? If a stranger read your description, would they know immediately that they aren’t your customer?
I’m guessing the answer is no. And that’s not good.
If you’re like most businesses, you’re not unique. You’re not original.
You’re just like the business on either side of you in the Google results.
It’s a shame. But it’s not uncommon. It’s not uncommon because it comes from fear…
We all have fears.
You’re afraid of missing out, of sticking out, and of taking a risk.
When you follow what everyone else is doing, it feels safer. Less risky.
No one will look at you funny or think you’re weird for claiming to be “full service”, “client focused”, or “dedicated”.
But guess what? That’s not safer. In fact, it’s actually the riskiest thing you can do.
When they go off the cliff, you’ll be right behind them.
Besides, you can’t stand out if you’re doing what everyone else is doing. You can’t break through the noise.
And if you haven’t noticed, it’s getting pretty noisy.
So do yourself a favor. Dance with the fear. Don’t settle.
Tool of the Week
There are so many great tools now available to help with marketing, I figured I’d start highlighting one each week. Here’s one for this week:
Optimal Scheduling by Buffer
This nifty little online app allows you to find the best time to share your content on social media.
According to Buffer, their software looks at the last 5,000 interactions such as likes, favorites, and clicks. It also looks at similar profiles in the same timezone, adds an “‘experimental’ element”, and then spits out the best times for you to post in a 24 hour period.
I’m testing it out now. I’ll let you know how it goes.
A Big List
Here is a great, big list of 42 internet marketing tools.
In Case You Missed It
Peep Laja over at ConversionXL wrote a great peace a few years ago on how to create a good value proposition and included some great examples. That post has over 400 backlinks… it’s worth the read!
Last Week’s Top 10
1. Taking Matters Into Your Own Hands
One of my favorite tools, Canva, has done a great job building an audience by providing valuable, unique content in their Design School. After hitting a wall, they found ways to use social media to increase traffic 475%. Here are the 7 lessons the folks at Canva learned from that journey.
2. Slidesharing is Caring
“There is no economic value to your content unless it gets shared.” – Mark Schaefer. Mark has a nice Slideshare with 10 simple ideas to help you get your content shared more.
3. Social Distortion
One common problem with thinking visual and creating great images for social media is that every platform requires different image sizes. What looks good on Twitter might be distorted on Facebook and horribly cropped on Instagram. This updated guide to social media image sizes will hopefully help and make things a little easier.
4. Go Green
Want to grow your blog’s audience? Create long-form, evergreen content. Darren Rowse, of ProBlogger.com explains why and how.
You spent hours creating your most recent piece of amazing, long-form, evergreen content. Then you spent days and weeks promoting it.
(You did spend time promoting it, didn’t you?!?)
Now it’s time to recycle. Learn three ways you can give existing content new life using LinkedIn Publisher.
6. The Day After Tomorrow
Hitting publish on your latest piece of content is just the beginning. Ok, it’s not really the beginning. But it’s close. Which doesn’t sound as good.
Point being, after you publish your content, there’s still a lot of work to be done. After all, it’s not going to share itself. Here is fantabulously detailed list of 11 things you should do the day after you publish your next post.
7. Deep Impact
Most of the content we share on social media is content created by others. No news there. But what you may not realize is the value in strategically curating that content. Hand selecting the best content and delivering that to your audience provides a great deal of value.
Not only are you saving your audience time researching, you’re giving them your expert opinion on what they should be reading. Simultaneously sifting out what’s worthless.
Curating content also gives you a great opportunity to connect with influencers, help others, and build a valuable network you can then use to grow your own brand.
Here are 8 ways content curation can boost your social media and content marketing impact. I’m pretty fond of, ahem, #4!
8. A Note To Skeptics
Google+ may have fizzled out quite a bit, but it’s not gone. And you shouldn’t count it out. Or discount its value.
Not convinced? Well, check out the skeptic’s guide to getting targeted traffic from Google+. You’ll find four, very actionable steps and a few great bonus tips.
9. Event Horizon
The summer is heating up, and so are the events. I’m getting bombarded daily with emails about the next big conference. Early discounts. Speaker lineups.
Hosting a successful event isn’t easy. Promotion is key. Eventbrite shares these 8 digital trends every event organizer needs to know.
Having a hard time getting your headlines to connect? Feeling ignored?
There’s a good chance you’ve missed a critical element of marketing and promotion. It’s a concept called the 5 Stages of Market Awareness.
If you want to create killer content that connects, take 8 minutes and 31 seconds and listen to Damian Farnworth’s podcast How to Use the 5 Stages Audience Awareness to Dominate Online.
You’ll be glad you did.