One of the misconceptions that I run into out there is that undermarketing always creates the same result: not having enough clients or customers.
And it’s so not the case!
Now, that’s often the most obvious problem because it’s so easy to quickly understand, and self diagnose.
But there’s a whole other level of marketing problems that are a LOT sneakier, and can create long term chaos in your business, and keep you stuck in an income plateau – at any level.
If you think that marketing and publishing are the same thing? You're damaging your business.
Especially if you think that publishing to social media is the same thing as marketing.
Now stay with me for a minute, because if you aren’t doing this you are rare.
I’m talking albino peacock rare.
As rare as someone contacting you 12 years after high school ends, and it doesn’t turn out they’re trying to sell you something from a pyramid scheme.
MY CHALLENGE TO YOU:
Take a moment and think about what marketing your business looked like in the last month. What did you plan to do, or what did you do?
If you want to be an overachiever? Make a quick list of them on your phone.
Now consider: how much of what you thought about was publishing content?
I'm talking posting to social media.
Editing Instagram photos.
Wondering if you really have to start emailing your list this year.
(You don't! It's not a requirement!)
Planning what you'll share on platform A vs. platform B.
And thinking about how much time it will take up.
If you’re an online business owner like my clients and me, I’m going to guess that publishing was easily 80% of your list.
And if that’s the case? You so aren’t alone.
When most people think and talk about marketing, they’re really thinking and talking about publishing.
…Even if we know intellectually that marketing and publishing aren't the same thing?
When most of us take action to market our business…. we're still mostly just publishing.
Thinking about them as the same thing will profoundly limit your business growth, success, and potential.
And on top of limiting your business, it also means that fewer people who need your help can actually find you.
So why do we let publishing take up so much of our time? What's going on?
If you see the potential of using social media or Instagram to attract clients, it makes perfect sense that your mind immediately jumps to:
“OH WOW. How much content do I need to create to do this well?! How will I ever find the time?!”
Especially if you’ve tried to keep up with a publishing schedule that seemed so reasonable at first, only to reduce you to tears in a few short days or weeks.
The overwhelm is real, and it’s really memorable! And because of that, it’s completely understandable that your brain wants to keep you safe from the pain and frustration of going through that again.
(Of course, with a system and a solid habit it can feel completely different – but I’ll stay off my soapbox for today.)
Published content is one of the only parts of other people’s marketing activities that we can actually see.
The friendships they’re forming? Invisible to us.
The pitches they might send out? Invisible to us.
Their conversations with mentors? Invisible to us.
The workshops they might teach? Invisible to us.
Their feature in a local magazine? Invisible to us.
The 3 random blog posts from 5 years ago that drive 80% of their traffic? Invisible to us.
Now I want to be clear…
I’m not saying that people are doing all of these things at once.
I’m definitely not saying that these are requirements of success.
I’m not saying you should drop everything and go add these to into your life.
These are just a handful of examples to remind you that unless a business has a large audience that’s eager to jump on everything they offer, there’s always more in the mix than publishing.
But for so many smart online business owners, publishing on social media is the only tool in our toolkit.
And that means that mostly we’re relying on hope that more people discover us.
That's why so many talented businesses struggle.
And ultimately, it’s why so many business owners quit while working to solve other problems, that won’t actually close the distance between them and their dreams.
Publishing is important, but it’s not all there is to marketing.
When it comes to marketing, you need to think bigger than publishing.
If you haven’t been thinking bigger than publishing until now, that’s ok!
Expanding how you think about your business is just like planting a tree.
The best time to start was 10 years ago.
The next best time is today.
(So here's to today!)