Thursday is guest post day here at Duct Tape Marketing and today’s post comes from @chrisbrogan
From the very first day I opened my first company, I knew that I was bucking trends. Or so I thought. You’ll laugh.
Starting Without a Storefront: Or So I Thought
I launched my business without having a website. So what, you’re thinking. But all my friends and models to follow at the time were built online. I learned what you know: your website is often not your business.
Stay Close to Your Community
I went on to market strictly through the digital channel. I blogged mostly, and neglected the value of asking my customers and audience to consider getting my (now beloved) newsletter. So I went years without having a good solid list of people to reach out and connect with about doing business. I bet you knew that long before me, as well.
Measure What You Want to Improve
I love the social networks as a digital channel, and I continue to believe they have value in selling. But I’ve been strongly over-valuing them as potential lead generation for my business without doing that essential step that you know already: I haven’t measured. And the moment I did, I found some startling results. I don’t sell nearly as much via my social networks as I do via my newsletter. And yet, I was spending a lot more time there than I was on developing ways to improve the one high-performing sales and lead generation platform I had.
Quick note: I believe social platforms have a huge role in business-making. Only, my experiences with directly selling into them has been very lackluster. Instead, I share insights, and lead people gently to get my newsletter. And then that converts.
Relationships Are Everything
You know this because you’ve read the Referral Engine and you follow one of the best relationship guys in the world here. John works hard to nurture relationships with his community and his colleagues, and what I’d come to realize was that I was serving a small set of buyers (huge companies) and wasn’t making time to connect with the people who matter (like John). With that in mind, I’m working on some ways (low tech and eventually a little more high-tech) to make sure that I keep the people who matter to me top of mind, even when I get bogged down and busy.
But you already knew the value of relationships.
In Praise Of YOU and Your Smarts
So, in the end, I suppose why I wrote this post was to validate the great learning you’re getting from John and others here. Because I launched a digital-first business, I’ve had to backtrack and learn what you knew from the start. And I’m better for it. Thank you for sharing what you know with learners like me.
Chris Brogan is president and CEO of Human Business Works, a publishing and media company focusing on courses and tools for smart professionals like you.