BY: Ashley Bodhaine
“Marketing” is a noun defined as meaning, “the action or business of promoting and selling products or services, including market research and advertising.
In the digital age, there are countless ways to promote one’s brand such as social media, Google AdWords, sponsoring events, using social media influencers and of more classic outlets such as radio and print. How does one choose?
I reached out to Empowerment Business Coach Pat J. Honiotes of Pat Honiotes, Inc., based out of Los Angeles, California for her opinion on the struggles of developing market efforts for small business.
Pat specializes in working with, “smart, savvy, and sometimes sassy, women leaders and business owners who are working long and hard to achieve success and are burning out along the way.” In her 80 Hour Work Week Cure program, she teaches them how to reclaim their time and to stop sacrificing themselves for their business, “so they can have more success, more time and more money all on their own terms.”
“Along the way,” Pat says, her clients “many times discover aspects of themselves that change their lives. These women who are struggling day after day after day — these women who got into business because they wanted to make a difference, make some money, and empower others — but now who are slaves to their business and on the verge of quitting. These women who don’t feel good about themselves, who are more irritable than they’d like to be, who are worn out, stressed out, and wondering where the fun in life went.”
It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all of the options promising to grow one’s business. Common mistakes entrepreneurs make is, “Not having a clear message for a definite group of people with a specific call to action and forgetting or not knowing to put your guts in your marketing,” Pat said.
She advises entrepreneurs to, “Get absolute clarity on your message and who you are marketing to before you ever begin and put you in your marketing.”
When asked which forms of marketing she feels are universal, Pat said, “Plain ol’ talking and communicating whether it is on social media, print, radio or good ol’ word of mouth. People are talking and giving referrals all the time — whether they realize it or not. It’s our job to make sure they are using the words that will help them connect with us by using the words ourselves first. People will repeat the words we use to describe ourselves and our products so it is imperative that we are precise in the words we use.”
While Pat primarily only uses social media for her Straight Talk series, she prides herself on having a clear message to her clients, “ I am not a marketing guru and don’t do marketing for others and don’t do marketing for myself. When I do market, I have someone handle it who is a marketing guru and knows what the heck they are doing in terms of when, where and how much and figure all that stuff out.
Here’s what I do know about marketing, teach people about marketing and do for myself — before you can successfully market in any of the mediums, you must be absolutely clear on exactly who your tribe is, what they are looking for solutions to and what it is they are willing to pay money to solve. This is called messaging.
It is about having your message so precise and targeted, your unique audience will immediately recognize it. It is about knowing your audience so well AND how to talk to them so that they recognize you and respond.
Now that you’ve got the messaging down pat, you can then market or turn it over to someone else to market. Messaging has to be in place first or you are wasting your marketing dollars.”
E-mail Patricia at: Pat@PatHoniotes.com