Top 10 Worst Print Ads – Avoid Killer Advertising Mistakes

One small error or oversight is all it takes to derail a marketing endeavor. When creating ads that make an impression, you want them to be memorable for the right reasons. The wrong reasons can prove fatal for a brand, especially in today’s hyper-connected world.

These 10 advertising mistakes offer valuable lessons we can all learn from. Let’s take a look at what happened and find out what they can teach us.

Advertising Mistake #1: Mr. Clean’s Mother’s Day Stereotypes

Print Advertising Mistakes - Mr. Clean

Mr. Clean decided to advertise the brand’s cleaning products with what the company probably thought was an uplifting message about mother-daughter bonding. Unfortunately, the advert depicted a mother and daughter cleaning windows together, featuring text about getting “back to the job that really matters” on Mother’s Day. 

The advert was interpreted as reinforcing gender stereotypes that imply a woman’s job is limited to housework. 

The lesson: Do your utmost to avoid using stereotypes. Before publishing any marketing material in print or online, take a second look.

Advertising Mistake #2: PETA’s Fat-Shaming Billboards

Print Advertising Mistakes - PETA

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has a history of advertising campaigns that attempt to guilt or shame consumers into adopting their hardline approach to lifestyle and animal rights. One of their more shocking campaigns ran in Florida in 2009.

The billboard depicted an overweight person in a swimming costume on a beach. The text read, “Save the whales. Lose the blubber. Go vegetarian.” The fat-shaming caused an uproar, and the outcry soon led to the adverts’ replacement. 

The lesson: Never use insults to get your message across. Laugh with people, not at them.

Advertising Mistake #3: Pepsi Didn’t Read the Room

Print Advertising Mistakes - Pepsi

In 2017, soft drink company Pepsi caused outrage with an advert inspired by the Black Lives Matter protests in the U.S. The advert starred Kendall Jenner, who appears to end a standoff between protestors and police officers by offering one of the officers a can of cola. Pepsi apologized, the advert was pulled and parodied, and 6 months later, company president Brad Jakeman resigned.

The company said it hoped the advert would portray the brand and its products as a culturally unifying force. Instead, it came across as tone-deaf and as an attempt to trivialize an important social cause. 

The lesson: Read the room and avoid referencing sensitive subjects.

Advertising Mistake #4: Bacardi’s Offensive Attempt At Humor

Print Advertising Mistakes - Bacardi

In a poor attempt at humor, an affiliate of the alcohol brand Bacardi ran an advertising campaign that implied that people who want to appear better-looking should find an ‘ugly girlfriend.’ The advert took the form of a mini-site and a Facebook page. 

The brand shut down the campaign after a couple of weeks due to complaints.

The lesson: Avoid being judgmental or degrading people in your campaigns.

Advertising Mistake #5: Adidas’ Poor Choice Of Words

Print Advertising Mistakes - Adidas

After the 2017 Boston Marathon, Adidas sent a congratulatory email to customers who participated in the race. The subject line was a simple, “Congrats, you survived the Boston Marathon!” A similar short, sweet message would’ve been appropriate for any other marathon. 

However, the subject line could have been better worded when it comes to one of Beantown’s biggest fitness events. In 2013, 3 people died, and more than 250 people were injured when a bomb exploded at the marathon. The company apologized immediately. 

The lesson: Have more than one person proofread all the copy included in your advertising campaigns.

Advertising Mistake #6: Burger King Goes Below The Belt

Print Advertising Mistakes - Burger King

When Burger King decided to advertise its BK Super Seven Incher, the ad agency it used took an approach that went below the belt. The advert featured an open-mouthed model faced with a sandwich. The pose and the accompanying text suggested a sexual act, which provoked a backlash from angry customers. 

Burger King responded by saying it was a limited-time promotion and that a Singapore-based agency was responsible for creating the advert. Several years later, the model stumbled across the advert and called for a boycott of the fast-food company, as she had no idea they’d used her image. 

The lesson: Don’t include sexual innuendo in your advertisements, and don’t use people’s images without consent.

Advertising Mistake #7: Hacienda’s Massacre References

Print Advertising Mistakes - Hacienda

In the mid-2000s, Hacienda Mexican Restaurants ran a billboard campaign in Indiana. The advert featured a cocktail, a headline that read, “We’re like a cult with better Kool-Aid,” and a slogan that read, “To die for!” The Kool-Aid and death references alluded to the mass murder-suicide that took place at the Peoples Temple in Jonestown, Guyana, in 1978.

The marketing chief, Jeff Leslie, said that the brand wasn’t trying to be controversial but rather that it wanted to be noticed. Whatever the brand’s intentions, the public, and press weren’t having any of it. After two weeks of outcry, the brand removed the advert. 

The lesson: Avoid sensitive subjects, especially when they’re tragedies that resulted in the deaths of innocent people.

Advertising Mistake #8: Flora Forgets Inclusivity

Print Advertising Mistakes - Flora

In a misguided attempt at being relevant, South African margarine brand Flora ran an advert that featured a heart made of porcelain, and the words, “Uhh, Dad, I’m gay,” shaped like a bullet headed toward the heart. The advert also featured the text, “You need a strong heart today.” 

Unilever, the Anglo-Dutch company that owns Flora, ordered the withdrawal of the advert after activists, the public, and the press condemned it as homophobic. 

The lesson: Be inclusive. Your ad will reach different groups of people.

Advertising Mistake #9: Airbnb Forgets The Importance Of Timing

Print Advertising Mistakes - Air BnB

Despite being one of the most user-friendly, well-designed sites, Airbnb doesn’t always get everything right. In 2017, they learned an important lesson regarding the timing of advertising campaigns. On August 28, Airbnb launched its Floating World campaign, which features an image of a house floating on the surface of the water. It also featured lines of text that read, “Stay above water” and “Live the life aquatic with these floating homes.” 

The problem was that Hurricane Harvey was pummeling the city of Houston. A spokesperson apologized for the insensitivity of the timing. 

The lesson: Pay attention to current events and make changes where necessary.

Advertising Mistake #10: Antonio Federici’s Naughty Religion

Print Advertising Mistakes - Federici

Italian ice cream company Antonio Federici ran an advert in the United Kingdom featuring models dressed as a Catholic priest and nun in what appeared to be a sexual encounter. It also featured text that read, “Submit to temptation.” 

Many angry Christians called for a boycott of the company and to submit enough complaints to see the advert banned by UK authorities. The company ran a few other adverts featuring sexualized images of religion, all of which prompted a backlash from Christians. 

The lesson: Leave religion alone, as the advert undoubtedly will offend people.

The Takeaway

No matter what format your marketing takes, your advertising needs to avoid offending, insulting and marginalizing people. Creating a memorable ad is one thing; creating an ad that tarnishes your brand is another.

If you need help coming up with your wow factor message that’s laid out by professional graphic designers, book a complimentary discovery call to see how we can help you. 

SIGN UP HERE: https://www.paramountbusinesscoach.com/coaching/coaching-call-sign-up/ 

QUESTION: What question can I answer for you about advertising your business? Please share your comments or questions below:

7 Local SEO Strategies That Work for 2021

It’s funny how ranking high in search engine results locally can often be far more challenging than ranking high globally. That may seem counterintuitive, but in many instances it’s true. 

But just because it’s hard doesn’t mean that it can’t be done – and done effectively. In this article, we’ll share with you proven local SEO strategies that you can implement immediately to get your content or webpage to rank high in local search engine results in 2021.

Strategy #1 – Take Advantage of Directories and Listings

This is one of the more obvious steps to take when trying to rank high in local search results, but it’s a good place to start. You should list your company or website in as many relevant directories as possible. These directories will, more often than not, be national or global directories, but they serve as a search engine in and of themselves. They require you to include a local address, then they can filter queries for their users based on location.

In addition to this helpful service directories provide, the fact that your company or website is listed in several different directories is something search engines look for.

Strategy #2 – Set Up a Google My Business Account (GMB)

According to a recent study carried out by Search Engine Land, “GMB and reviews are the variables that have grown the most in their perceived impact.”

Setting up a GMB will not only help your company rank high in search results but will get you listed on Google Maps as well. You can also post social media engagements onto your GMB listening, which would be another good way to boost your search engine results ranking.

As valuable as the service is, you might be surprised to know that it is completely free to set up a GMB listing.

Strategy #3 – Solicit Reviews

Whatever you have to do to get your company or your product or service reviewed, chances are that it will be well worth it. Reviews play a major role in search engine results. Also, there are many users who, when looking for information about a company or a product, will only click on reviews or review sites.

The best way to get your customers or clients to leave reviews is to ask. Sounds easy enough. And in most cases it is. You should be engaging with your customers, and asking for their feedback in the form of a posted review is a good way to engage. But make it easy for them. If you’re engaging with your customers or clients via email or social media, attach a link to some review sites where they can post their reviews. You could also send them a simple review template along with the link so that they could write and post a review in a matter of minutes.

As a general rule of thumb, people love sharing their opinions. And when it comes to ranking high in local search results, that is definitely behavior you want to encourage. 

RELATED BLOG ARTICLE: 5 Great Tips for Marketing Your Small Business

Strategy #4 – Solicit the Help of a Professional

While there is certainly the right way to go about it and plenty of wrong ways, there is no shortcut. The truth of the matter is that in order to get a high search engine ranking, you need backlinks – and a lot of them. Getting backlinks means creating a lot of content that features a link to your company’s website and then getting that content published on high-traffic sites. The process takes a good amount of time and manpower.

The good news is that there is no shortage of professionals willing and eager to lend a helping hand. A digital marketing manager is one of the top careers in IT in 2021. Along with SEO content writers you can find on sites like ProBlogger or BloggingPro, soliciting help from professionals can be a real-time-saver in addition to yielding results – for the right price; of course.

RELATED BLOG ARTICLE: How to Generate More Leads with Content Marketing When You Hate to Write

 

Strategy #5 – Publish Local Keyword Optimized Content

It’s more beneficial in terms of SEO results for your company to be linked to from an outside source (like a directory, reviews, or a blog). But publishing your own content that ranks high for certain local keywords then linking to your company from there (even if it’s internal) still has value.

The added bonus of this strategy is that it shouldn’t be difficult to find local keywords that are easy to rank for. You can use a powerful tool like Ahref’s Keyword Difficulty Checker to get an idea of what keywords you should target, then create and publish your content accordingly.

 

Strategy #6 – Optimize Headers and Meta Descriptions for Local Searches

In the grand scheme of SEO, this is a relatively small factor – though not inconsequential. However, it’s so easy to do it would be negligent not to. Simply include your location in headers and meta descriptions of your online content. It’s a quick fix and implemented along with other smart SEO strategies, it will yield results.

 

Strategy #7 – Partner With Local Service Providers

There’s strength in numbers. It’s possible to succeed on your own, but the odds are far more in your favor if you have help, if you are an army rather than an individual going into battle.

You probably already have associations with other businesses – suppliers or couriers, for example. The chances are that they, too, are looking to boost their local search engine results. Talk to them. See if you can’t find a way to work together toward these shared objectives. It could be as simple as a mention with a link on their website in exchange for doing the same for them.

 

The Bottom Line

Boosting your local search engine results won’t happen overnight, which is a further reason to get started implementing these strategies today. Optimize your website, target easier local keywords at first, take advantage of directories and GMB. Engage with your customers and solicit them for reviews, and boost your backlinks with the help of a freelance writer and local businesses you already partner with.

QUESTION: Which of the 7 strategies in this article do you think will yield the fastest results? If you implement all 7, how soon do you think it will be before your business is on page one? Share with us in the comments below!

The Importance of Print Advertising for Small Business Owners

With the advent of social media and email marketing, printed advertisement has taken something of a backseat. However, its relevance cannot be overstated even today. According to published reports, 38% of US adults visiting a business’ online page based on printed ads.  Wow! That is quite significant, don’t you think?

From the psychological marketing perspective, research showed that printed ads require 21% less cognitive effort to process compared to digital marketing content. Therefore, diversifying your marketing tactic to cover both digital and print advertisement niches will enable you to reach more potential customers than before. Let’s take a look at how you can benefit from using print advertisement in addition to digital marketing, which is standard in today’s day and age.

Types of Printed Advertising Media to Consider

There is a wide range of printed media that you can use to promote your brand and reach new audiences. Based on statistics, 56% of customers find print marketing to be the most trustworthy type of marketing, with 66% of direct mail printed ads opened. 

In some ways, you can’t go wrong with the printed advertisement for the simple reason that people are used to it. Whether you target the elderly, millennial, or teen demographic, your audience is bound to appreciate printed ads far more than their digital equivalents. With that, some of the printed mediums you can explore to market your business includes but are not limited to: 

  • Magazine ads
  • Posters and billboards
  • Brochures and flyers
  • Stickers
  • Office supplies (notebooks, mugs, lighters, pens, etc.)
  • Business cards
  • Direct mail (catalogs, newsletters, coupons, etc.)

Balancing Printed and Digital Marketing

Adding print advertising, like magazine advertising, and even guerilla marketing to your digital marketing mix helps your brand stand out and attract bigger public interest than it would otherwise. 

This will organically seep into your online engagement, sales, and word of mouth, given your reliance on print. While some may mistakenly regard magazine advertising as retro, the reason print advertising accounts for nearly 40% of website traffic proves that consumers continue to read physical printed materials.  However, you shouldn’t neglect the power of digital advertisement as it can improve your printed ads and create an omnichannel campaign with greater reach.

Great Return on Investment 

Studies found that “Average advertising costs for small business operations that use Google Ads as part of their online advertising strategy are between $9,000 and $10,000 per month.”

So, compared to digital advertising, Magazine Print Advertising is typically cheaper for the small business owner. 

Another hugely important reason I recommend diversifying online marketing with traditional magazine advertising is that platforms like Google (and social media) can change the rules of their game at any time. Case in point: take the latest Google core update, which changes the search engine’s algorithm. Google changed their rules so much that even the biggest SEO Agencies saw a huge drop in their website traffic and had to remodel their SEO strategy to play by the new rules. Using both digital and magazine print ads will help protect your business from the risks of ‘putting all your eggs in one basket” while providing your business multiple sources of traffic to your website.

Grow Your Local Franchise Location

If you’re a small business owner who owns a franchise, you want to follow what the mega brands have been doing for years. Many international brands like Coca-Cola not only advertise on global networks, but they also continue to advertise in local magazine ads to make their brands relevant to local niche communities.

Build Website Engagement and Conversions

While many small business owners like to advertise your phone number in magazine ads, you should still always publish your website address on all your print ads. If you’re running a full-page magazine ad you should also include your brand’s social media handles. This will help to increase your online engagement while greatly increasing trust, assuming you have an updated professional website that provides quality, trust-building content.

RELATED ARTICLE: 7 Reasons Why Your Website is Leaking Leads

If you need help writing better website copy there are sites you can order website reviews. I have not tried this service yet. If you end up using them, post a comment on this blog to let us know what you thought of their services. 

Since I run into this challenge a lot of my private business coaching clients, we now offer top-notch website copywriting, graphic design, website remodels and new website builds through our done-for-you marketing agency brand.

Extended Longevity Compared to Digital Ads

Finally, magazine advertising has much longer longevity compared to Google PPC or Social Media ads.

One downside with Google, Facebook and LinkedIn ads is they appear and then disappear on the user’s screen. So, there’s no way for that user to go back to that ad at a later time when they now have a need for the services that you offer. 

Magazine ads, for instance, do not disappear. When a magazine subscriber sees your ad, if they don’t have the need yet, they may not visit your website or call you right away. But, when a  triggering event occurs,  they remember seeing an ad for it months prior. That’s when they go back to the magazine and find your ad is still there. That’s when they contact you to become a customer.

Each time someone comes across your printed ad, even long after the initial publish date, you are increasing your brand awareness, so more people will know what the name of your business is, what you do and your contact info.

Opting for Omnichannel Marketing in 2021 (Conclusion)

So, the purpose of this article was not to convince you whether magazine print advertising is better than digital advertising. It was to educate you on the different benefits magazine print advertising offers. Ultimately, it’s best to diversify your marketing efforts to having an omnichannel approach, which is synonymous with multi media marketing or cross media marketing. 

This does not negate the importance of having a compelling message in your magazine ads presented in a professionally designed ad. A confusing ad or an ad that looks like cheap clip art is highly unlikely to bring you that 38% traffic to your website. 

RELATED ARTICLE: Print Advertising Tips

If you need help coming up with your wow factor message that’s laid out by professional graphic designers, book a complimentary discovery call to see how we can help you. 

SIGN UP HERE: https://www.paramountbusinesscoach.com/coaching/coaching-call-sign-up/ 

 

QUESTION: What question can I answer for you about advertising your business? Please share your comments or questions below:

How Leaders Can Change Lives Of Others

Effective Leadership for Business Owners Can Change Lives

An effective leader knows that inspiration works better than demands, and people respond more positively to change when they understand the goal. 

Demands can lead to resistance, while transparency and a sense of purpose can inspire people to follow willingly. 

Anyone who has worked for a demanding boss understands the impact it can have on one’s life, both inside and outside the office. 

Effective leadership for business owners who cultivate healthy and mutually respectful relationships with their people, make the work more enjoyable and fulfilling for everyone.

 

Confidence and Courage

For a team to be successful, its members need to have confidence in their abilities and know that they are making a positive contribution to the effort. That confidence may come from being allowed to make mistakes and learn from them, without fearing career-ending consequences. 

Enabling people to spread their wings not only builds self-confidence, but the courage to take on new challenges and share their ideas. These strengths will serve them well throughout their careers. Thus creating a stronger leadership for business owners

 

Support and Development

A good leader will recognize the potential in others. They will see beyond the tasks on a person’s job description, provide the opportunity to develop their skills and support their career growth. In return, they will have gained a lifelong ally. 

Though it’s easier to limit a person to the role you hired them for, a good leader will nurture an employee’s growth, even if it means that they might eventually move on. Interacting with people as individuals and trying to accommodate

their unique personalities and styles of communication is an essential skill for an effective leader. 

They must possess the necessary people skills to handle any situation professionally. Developing effective leadership habits takes commitment. It also takes time, effort, and real-life experience. Building a leadership for business owners

will not be easy and will take perseverance.

 

Empower and Encourage

Mutual trust is critical within a successful team. Effective leaders demonstrate that trust by allowing people to do their jobs without micromanaging them, which encourages them to take ownership of their work and responsibility for it. 

They empower people by giving them the latitude to make decisions and then trusting their judgment. Successful leaders are as transparent and honest as possible with their people and stand behind them.

 

Vision and Purpose

Leadership for business owners is great, but when a team that is led by someone who is committed to their life’s purpose, it can bring about positive change in both its members and society in general. 

Effective leaders inspire people to share their vision and a sense of purpose. As a result, they will strive to achieve your mutual goal because they want to. 

People who learn to approach their work in this way are more likely to become future leaders who will have the opportunity to bring about positive change. 

 

Strength and Honesty

 Leadership for business owners know adversity requires both strength and honesty. If a company has hit a rough patch, the employees usually know it, so telling them everything is just fine may result in a lack of trust. 

If a situation is dire, an effective leader will be as honest as possible about what it could mean to the team and how leadership plans to reach a solution. Armed with the truth, people will usually help to put things right, and they’ll do it out of loyalty.

Effective leadership for business owners can make life better for those who follow them by providing opportunities to learn and grow. Showing confidence in people will help them to have more confidence in themselves and encourage them to keep striving for more knowledge and improved skills. 

If people understand a leader’s vision, values and purpose, they will be more likely to follow willingly. And with a common goal, the journey can be a lot more rewarding. 

Leadership for business owners skills are not always innate and may require some additional study. Whether through instructor-led courses, books or with a mentor, acquiring these skills is an important part of effective leadership. The tools are available. It just takes some practice and commitment.

 

 

Outsourcing Marketing vs Hiring a Marketing Team

Sigh! It can be incredibly frustrating to feel like the vision you have for your business is moving excruciatingly slow.

You have zillions of brilliant marketing strategies. The problem is there is never enough time in your day to execute or manage it all especially without a marketing team.

I have found the biggest cause is from something called the Marketing Strategy Execution Gap. You need more soldiers on the ground to deploy multiple marketing strategies to free you up to shine as Chief Visionary. You need a marketing team.

“Without vision, the people perish.” ~ Proverbs 29:18” “Without marketing, the vision will perish.” ~ Yoon Cannon” Click To Tweet

You probably already tried outsourcing to a marketing agency only to be disappointed with the results. According to digital.com, 76% percent of small business owners report facing marketing challenges.

The core challenges of marketing fall into these 5 areas:

  1. Generating traffic and leads
  2. Training your team to generate traffic and leads
  3. Lack of resources (budget / people / time)
  4. Hiring talented people
  5. Social media

I mean, starting a business is hard enough. Can’t these leads just come you? You have a great business idea, right? You should be overwhelmed with leads, right?

Wishful thinking.

After All, There are amazing musicians who, based on their genius of talent, should be worldwide superstars. But instead, they starve and struggle for decades because they were never ‘discovered’ by record labels who can market the heck out of them.

Your genius business idea is no different. Doing all the marketing yourself should no longer be an option.

As the visionary, how will you close that ‘Marketing Strategy Execution Gap’?

  • Option 1: Outsource your marketing to a bunch of freelancers or to a marketing agency.
  • Option 2: Hire your own in-house marketing team.

Which is better for you? …

Hear From 11 Entrepreneurs On Outsourcing or Hiring In-House Marketing Team

 

I’ve rounded up 10 small business entrepreneurs to weigh in with their opinion on this decision. Find out the pros and cons they have experienced with outsourcing vs hiring an in house marketing team. At the end I will also share my own experience from everything I have tried over 26 years of being an entrepreneur to help you make a more informed decision for yourself.

  1. When you know it’s time to outsource your marketing

    Kymberlie Dimoz, CEO Of Lighting Rod Agency
    Outsourcing is perfect when your business is making a healthy profit margin Click To Tweet

Kymberlie Dimoz shares “outsourcing is perfect when your business is making a healthy profit margin but you haven’t quite yet realised your potential..”

 

  1. Benefits outsourcing your marketing can offer.


    Ambroise de La Gorce, CEO/Founder Of Openinno
    @OpenInno Outsourcing at the very beginning of the business can offer more flexibility. Click To Tweet
     

Ambroise de La Gorce, CEO/Founder Of Openinno shares, “Outsourcing and in-house marketing both have their pros and cons. Each option can be better than the other in different situations depending on numerous factors, including type of management, marketing tools used, sprints management, business stage.

In my opinion, outsourcing at the very beginning of the business can offer more flexibility. Recruiting in-house is necessary when the product/market fit is validated, to give more stability to the business. Then outsourcing 20% of the team or so when scaling the business can be interesting to gather the resources we can hardly find on-site.”

  1. Advice on hiring in-house marketers.

    Kerry Maybank Owner Of Strategic Links
    Have team members that are great at marketing.. Click To Tweet

Kerry Maybank shares, “I mostly do my own marketing, but I have team members that are great at marketing and create more of the significant pitch documents for us.  I also have gotten free advertising by doing interviews with the media.

My company does not have employees.  We have team members.  People come onboard with exceptional talents in particular areas of the business that significant interest at the time.  Sometimes we provide equity if the need is that great or we barter and provide their companies something in return based on our expertise.  It keeps costs down, and creates mutually beneficial relationships, while increasing the exposure of our firm.”

David Shares, “We keep our marketing in-house because it allows us to harness our own data and learn to understand how our customers interact with our business. Combining marketing customer data, building segments, and then activating those segments in your communication is something that really draws growth.”

  1. Hiring in-house marketing employees is a lot to manage.

    Peter Rigas Founder Of Fini Cutlery You need both Click To Tweet

Peter Shares, “You need both. You need in house because no matter how much you pay an outside agency or group of freelancers, no one will care about your business or know your products/services better than you and your staff. However, there is so much to manage and oversee that you need outside agencies that specialize in the various verticals.

  1. How we balance both outsourcing and in-house marketing team

    Mark Walerysiak Jr. Founder Of Giverrang

    @marktuff Have someone inside the team and as close to Don’t try to do all your marketing in house the product as I am. Click To Tweet

Mark Walerysiak Jr. shares, “I’m early stage, and do all the marketing myself (at the moment). I could see the benefit of outsourcing particular tasks related to content / SEO. The more weedy stuff. But when it comes to telling compelling on-brand stories I would prefer to have someone inside the team and as close to the product as I am. When you eat, sleep, and breathe a product (and not worrying about other clients), you can communicate much more passionately about it in just about any form, and I think the audience can pick up on that. So the preference would be in-house if it’s doable.”

  1. Don’t try to do all your marketing in house

    Laurie Kessler CEO Of The Celebrity Source
  2. @celebritysource Outsource for marketing tactics outside of our areas of expertiseClick To Tweet

Laurie shares, “Our marketing needs are managed with both internal and external resources. Our internal team has a great deal of experience in marketing and PR – so we can typically tap into our own knowledge and experience for basic initiatives like drafting corporate communications and pitches, social media posts, email marketing, etc.

We outsource for marketing tactics outside of our areas of expertise, or if our bandwidth is tight – such as more complex social media campaigns, SEO and digital advertising.

Gary Shares, “I’ve always done my marketing in-house. I’ve only worked in or ran marketing companies, so outsourcing my marketing would be really weird, lol.The one piece of advice I would give entrepreneurs that feel weary about or otherwise unable to fully carry out marketing duties, still be involved. As a consultant, part of my job is to learn as much about my client’s brand as possible because the person or people leading the business know the most about their brand. I can help a client focus. I can help a client develop. However, no one can create someone else’s brand on their own.”

 

Staci shares, “As a new one-woman consultancy, I’m doing it all right now — marketing and business development as well as everything else involved in the business!

Honestly, while that requires more time and effort from me, I think it actually helps build trust and is part of my business values. With me, it’s personal, and my clients know that they can trust Blue Moss for personal dedication and utmost quality.

 

 
  1. We do all the outreach to prospects.

    Keith Kirkpatrick Principal & Founder of 4K Research & Consulting 

Keith shares “I generally do not outsource marketing, as I find it easier to directly reach out to potential clients. Additionally, much of my work comes through referrals, anyway.”

 
  1. Just because you know how to do marketing, doesn’t mean you should all be done by you..

Yoon Cannon Founder, Paramount Business Coach Host, Biz Growth Doctors Show

@yooncannon Make sure your marketing project manager is a well-trained Full Stack Marketer. Click To Tweet

I have done all three options throughout my 26 year  journey owning 4 different businesses. I once did all the marketing myself. But I quickly found that not to be the best use of my time as the Chief Visionary and Strategist. Just because I know how to do the marketing, doesn’t mean I should be the primary person executing it all. So, then I spent many years outsourcing to freelancers.

While it’s a good choice for one time projects,  the danger is you end up spending way too much time vetting and project managing freelancers, which prevents you from acting as the Chief Visionary and Strategist. The other common pitfall with outsourcing is the temptation to hire the lowest priced freelancer. Like with anything else … you get what you pay for.

You risk super sloppy mistakes and oversights that cost you your brand’s reputation. Here’s an example a realtor friend of mine forwarded me. She subscribed to be on an email list from a marketing provider in her industry … to her surprise here’s what the email read:

 

My realtor friend was so confused! …. Here she thought she was signing up to let this marketing company do her social media posts and email marketing for her.  Instead of getting info about the done for you marketing services she was expecting, an email template and an email from a weight loss company came instead. Certainly people do make mistakes. But, when you outsource to the cheapest provider, sloppy mistakes just seem to occur in high frequency.

Marketing is not a mindless task any monkey can do.

When I exhausted my patience for chronic sloppy mistakes from outsourced VA’s and freelancers I decided to let go the reigns and hired a marketing agency to take care of it all A-Z. I hoped outsourcing the majority of my marketing to an agency would remove the project managing off my plate.

I hired Several different agencies, but in each experience I didn’t see the ROI to renew. Instead, I discovered the project managers who were assigned to me were skilled at project managing (which is a good thing), but so many critical details got missed because they weren’t skilled enough in all things marketing. [CONTEXT] There are many great marketing agencies out there who have highly skilled marketers as project managers, but these agencies are often geared to Enterprise size clients, not so much for the SMB community.

What I do now, and my advice to other SMB’s (small-medium business owners) is the 70-20-10 mix.

  • 70% of our core marketing is done in-house
  • 20% is outsourced (one time projects or a specialty area we don’t have in house yet)
  • 10% still is done by me (like recording videos, giving interviews)

I finally found the key to taking project managing off your plate as a small business owner is to make sure the project manager is a well-trained Full Stack Marketer.

Conclusion

Ok … there you have it. You just heard from 11 of us about our experiences and opinions on whether it’s better to outsource your marketing or hire your own in-house marketing team.

Whether you decide to outsource or hire in house, the next set of decisions you’ll need to make are things like:

  1. Who should you hire first?
  2. What’s the going rate for this and that?
  3. What is the best marketing strategy they should be implementing for your business?
  4. Where can you go to find marketers who know what they’re doing?
  5. What should you look for when hiring your marketing person/team?

My answer to all of the above questions is this: 

It depends.

I would answer all of these questions differently depending on each unique business owner, bandwidth, budget and brand. If you want to get clarity on best way for you to eliminate the marketing strategy execution gap in your business why not take me up on my free offer? For a limited time, I am offering a FREE 45 Minute Strategy Call to help you work through this.


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Click the link below and Eliminate Your Marketing Strategy Execution Gap!

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QUESTION: What other questions would you add to the list of 5 above? Share your comments and questions below.

Stop Chasing Prospects with Weston Lyon

Listen to Yoon Cannon’s Interview with Author Weston Lyon

It’s my pleasure to introduce to you today, Weston Lyon, author Stop Chasing Prospects and nineteen books, Also, he’s one of the only authors to ever write nine books in eleven months.

In addition, Weston is the Founder of Plug & Play Publishing: a Pittsburgh-based, authority-positioning company that teaches coaches, consultants, speakers, and other education-based service providers who fear rejection and being treated like low-level sales people how to stop chasing prospects and instead position themselves as authorities in their fields and get prospects to start chasing them by writing a book to grow their businesses.

In this audio interview Weston and I talk about excerpts from his book on questions like:

  1. What is an authority and why is it important to become an authority?
  2. What are the 3 steps to position yourself as an authority? 
  3. How do you become an authority?
  4. What are the 5 factors to demonstrate your authority? … and more

Stop Chasing Prospects Book Description

Every entrepreneur I know – big or small, new or seasoned, struggling or successful – focuses their attention on ONE, main challenge they face in their businesses every single day: generating more leads and converting more sales.

After all, that’s what our businesses are really about, right? Yes, we’re in business to help and serve our clients. But without leads and sales, we have no business. Without leads and sales, we don’t have enough money to survive. So, if generating more leads and converting more sales is the main problem most business owners face today, how do we solve that problem? 

Well, most entrepreneurs’ answer is to track down more prospects and beat them into submission. I’m here to tell you that while that’s an option… it’s an annoying and ineffective option at best. We don’t need to chase more business. Instead, we need to STOP CHASING PROSPECTS and get prospects to start chasing us.

In this book, you’ll learn…

  • The fatal difference between being a real authority and being seen as a real authority (this subtle nuance could cost you tens of thousands of dollars!)
  • How to establish trust and confidence with your prospects without the fear of rejection or being treated like a low-level salesperson
  • The secret to positioning yourself as a unique, interesting authority, so prospects ignore your competition and see you as their ONLY choice
  • How to ethically and intelligently leverage and demonstrate your authority so prospects start chasing you

Exclusive Bonus for Interview Listeners:

Find out in the interview how you can receive a digital copy of Weston Lyon’s brand-new book, Stop Chasing Prospects: A Simple, 5-Step Formula to Help You Quickly Establish Trust, Confidence, And a Powerful Authority Position So Prospects Chase You (a $19.95 value) – absolutely free!

Special Offer (All Proceeds Benefit the Agape Africa Fund)

If you want to donate $20 to receive the paperback version of Stop Chasing Prospects. All proceeds will benefit the Agape Africa Fund, a non-profit organization providing resources to support the missionaries and their medical work in and around Bongolo Hospital in Gabon, Africa. For more information about Agape, please visit: www.AgapeAfricaFund.org.

QUESTION: What is your #1 biggest challenge when it comes to prospecting for your business? Please share your comments and questions below.