I’ve devoted my (brief) professional life to working with the people behind the ambitious, entrepreneurial brands that people know and love.
I’ve worked with a vast range of individuals behind organisations, of all shapes and sizes, across all sorts of industries, making all sorts of products. I’ve always been curious to understand what it is that has got the successful ones this far, what they have in common and what sets them apart from those who struggle to reach their potential. Where is the value created?
In my experience, ask your typical medium-sized business owner how they managed to get where they are today and chances are you’ll get some combination of answers – containing words such as common sense, referral, word-of-mouth, having the best people around them, or simply by focusing on making the best product possible.
Dig a little deeper and ask them what worked best when it came to marketing and advertising? The answer is likely to laced with skepticism.
The role of marketing and advertising is at best unclear in the minds of many who have created so much of the value in the economy. Marketing is often seen as an ad hoc process, involving short-term bursts of activity in order to produce sales; and advertising is seen as an expensive exercise reserved for the “big boys” with the big egos.
At the end of the day, marketing and advertising (and all sorts of other things) are simply tools to amplify the powerful force of attraction that comes from good ideas and the confidence to go with your gut. They exist to help systemise and simplify word of mouth.
The reality is that there is no magic formula to success, no marketing secret that will attract instant fanfare or riches. There is no substitute for picking an idea you believe in, then simply getting on with it!
Just make sure you believe in your good idea in the first place, then make it your mision to engage with others who do too.