Copyright by Debbie Bolduc, BizBuzz Marketing Partners

All businesses have occasional lulls. That’s often when I get calls asking “What can you do today to help me drum up new business now?. The answer, aside from recommending you slash prices and offer amazing specials (which generally only get you the one -time bargain hunters) is nothing.

You see, marketing, like gardening, is a slow process. No one thing on any one day is going to bring you an immediate influx of sales. I often hear, “I did an ad last week and got no response”. One ad? Really? And you didn’t have a line at the door? Color me shocked! It will take many ads, posts, networking events, blog entries, etc. to see any results.

Marketing is not sales (please read that aloud at least three times). Marketing is like networking (online and in person). When you attend a networking event, you don’t expect to seal a deal with a new client on the spot, but instead, to introduce yourself to as many new people as possible, getting to know enough about each one to appraise their need, or lack thereof, for your product or service, and briefly make them aware of what you have to offer professionally. To keep from boring them, you include a helpful industry tip or relevant small talk to exhibit your professional expertise (keep it short, no one likes an opportunist) and a willingness to share your wisdom without expectation of anything in return. This is basically how social media works. They may not have a need for your service or product right away, but when they do (or when a friend requests the name of a reputable company in that industry) your name will be the one that comes to mind first. The more they see/hear your name the more likely this is to occur. In marketing this is called “top of the brain”.

Again, it’s not fast, not a magic pill to be swallowed for immediate results. Because of this, there is no good or bad time to market your business.People often say “I don’t need to promote my business now, this is my busy season”. But then they come to me when things get slow and money is tight asking for fast, inexpensive results. That’ The best time to market your business is every day. Build the awareness of your business, your brand, your differentiators while business is good, and funds are available for those out-of-pocket expenses and your slow periods will be fewer and less dire.

So, buy those seeds and start them indoors. Then get out there and rake that garden, feed the soil, transplant the sprouts, water and tend to your plants as needed….and wait. It WILL happen. It just takes time and constant attention, but the harvest is so worth it.