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If you‘re a bootstrapping solo entrepreneur, image-marketing should probably be pretty darned low on your list of priorities.

But before I offend too many people, let me say if your competition tends to be heavy corporate types or mega-company types, then you are probably competing with mega “image-marketing” as well and may need to do some level of that.

That said, here’s why I’d ditch image-marketing any day in favor of these 3 types of marketing that are far more effective ...

A logo does not a dollar make

My confession is in my very first business, I lamented for weeks, going back and forth with my designer on creating the perfect logo.  But let’s think about this for a minute. Ask your raving fans and happy clients what your logo looks like.  They probably won’t have a clue.

Now I’m not saying you shouldn’t have one.  I got one quite by accident and very recently.  Cost me $45 and literally 15 minutes one night while browsing a do-it-yourself design site.  I got it to fill some blank space at the top of my web site as I was redesigning it.  happy Your logo may indeed make YOU feel good.  But your business isn’t about you, right?  It’s about your customers and their needs.

Other image-marketing distractions

A few other image things solopreneurs get overly focused on are fancy glossy brochures/flyers, designing the perfect business card, creating a multi-thousand dollar corporate-looking web site, spending time and space talking about awards, recognitions, certifications, sending press releases that say nothing more than “Hey, I’m here and my logo looks good.” or “Hey, I just got an award. You should be impressed.”

Again, I’m not totally against any of that, but there are so many major mistakes made with each of these so-called “marketing strategies” that it ends up being a waste of time and money.  Here’s how to think about your marketing to achieve what you really want - more clients and more cash:

Action-focused marketing:  It's important that all of your marketing is action focused.  It clearly answers the question "So what do you want me (as the prospect) to do?"  When I land on your web site, read your brochure/flyer, get your business card, or any marketing piece, does it specifically tell me what you want me to do next?  

You do this by saying things like click here, call now, download this now, get a free report, free audio, free assessment, free sample, etc.  It should invite me to do something that puts me onto your list and also takes me to the next step of becoming a potential client/customer.

Results-based marketing:  It probably goes without saying that you market your business to get results, yes?  Question is, are you measuring to see if you're actually getting results?  Solopreneurs groan when I say "Do the math."  But it's necessary.  Get your calculator out, see how much you've spent on things like networking meetings, ads, etc., and determine how many ideal prospects, clients or sales it produced.  Sometimes the problem is we don't set up our marketing in a trackable way.  So we remain clueless about what's working and what's not.  Tracking may be the change you make immediately so you can shift to results-based marketing.

Solution-focused marketing:  Be sure that you clearly tap into what's keeping your prospect up at night.  What's their burning desire, biggest frustration, most pressing challenge?  And given that, what can you put into your marketing that positions YOU, your products and your services as the solution to that pain/problem/burning desire?  

People don’t really care how many awards you’ve won and how many letters you have behind your name (PCC, MCC, XYZ certified, blah, blah, blah).  They want to know “Can you make this problem go away for me?”  And your best marketing does a superb job of articulating the key problem(s) you solve and what you offer to do just that.


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