This is probably more of a vent post than anything!
I recently came across someone who needed help with their small business. The business was clearly struggling, but the owner was in denial about it. I offered my expertise, and provided an updated logo, website, and cleaned up their services.
After lots of work, the owner said they didn't need help with that stuff, they only needed help with marketing. I explained that marketing and branding is everything you do in the name of your business.
The owner was looking for free marketing outlets that required no effort on their part, specifically a "Greensheet classified" or "Thrifty Nickel". This is 2017. Are you kidding me?
People really need to understand that small business is not easy! It's not impossible, but it's not EASY. If it were easy peasy lemon squeezy, then why do most small businesses fail?
Your small business will not grow on its own. You won't be able to sit back and let it morph into a mega empire that brings you lots and lots of money. Just like there's a difference between 'customer service' and 'good customer service', there's a difference between 'marketing' and 'effective marketing'.
Droves of customers will not just stumble upon your business and decide to patronize you 'just because'. Anybody can have a website, but you need a GOOD website. You can't just throw a bunch of information onto the page, and think it'll entice customers.
Small business is work. Lots of work. Hard work. You'll have to use a lot of elbow grease.
You need business cards. You can't hand out folded sheets of paper with your information on it. You can't stand and waste people's time, taking 5 minutes explaining what your business does. That's what a business card is for. That's what an elevator or sales pitch is (60 seconds or less!).
Your sales pitch needs to be rehearsed. It needs to be well put-together, clear, and concise. It has to have a flow to it. You shouldn't be begging or sounding desperate.
A small business is a machine that has to continually be oiled and maintained. It can't self-operate. If you intend on your business becoming anything lucrative, it's not going to happen on its own.
What are your thoughts? Do you have anything to add?