We all have loose lips, and as much as we try to control what we say, sometimes our brain just doesn’t stop the message soon enough before the words come out. As a result, we end up saying things that affect our motivations, outcomes and future goal achievement.
Now, you might be thinking, “No way! That’s crazy. I totally control what I say.”
Perhaps you do. But I’ve been around enough business owners, sales professionals and marketers to know that the majority of people need a refresher course in thought management.
Because our words have a way of affecting our actions. When you say, “I don’t feel like going to the gym today,” you likely won’t make it to the gym. When you say, “Nothing I’m doing in my business is working,” you’ve predicted your failure because you’ve refused to look at the positive side of the equation.
Since I live and breathe marketing, I often hear these five phrases. And I’m here to tell you to STOP saying these:
1. I don’t have the [fill in the blank] to focus on marketing.
By saying this, you’re implying that marketing is somehow reserved to one area or a series of pre-determined actions. Marketing involves EVERY SINGLE ACTION within your company operations. From the way you answer the phone to your email signature and your headshot in the local paper, marketing cannot be put in a box. What you probably mean when you say this is something like, “I don’t have time to create an email newsletter.” Specificity versus generality. Watch yourself. I guarantee you said, “I don’t have the [time/resources/staff/money] to focus on marketing” at least once, maybe even dozens of times.
2. I don’t have time to create a [newsletter, other tactic, etc]
Our words have a way of determining our priorities. When we tell others that we don’t have time to create an email newsletter, what we really mean is, “I don’t have this established as a high-enough priority to devote my time to it, and I don’t value it enough to hire someone to do it for me.”
If you truly believe in the power of a particular tactic to grow your business, determine the potential value it could bring to your business and hire someone to help you (Disclaimer: I help people with this all the time. Trust me, you’re not alone!).
3. Social media is a waste of time and energy.
Unfortunately, many small businesses get excited about using social media to promote their products and services, but after the initial excitement wears off, they give up or resort to using it only for last-minute announcements or product blasts (blasts is another word you should stop using…but more on that in a future blog post!).
The problem with this approach is that social media, just like other mediums, requires the selection of the right platform, a strategy, and consistent execution. Companies like Starbucks, Nike, and Ford see results on social media because people love their product/service first, and then connect with them on social media. Stop waiting for social media to be the “low-cost” silver bullet – spend some time developing a strategy, or get someone to help you, and develop some creative and innovative ways to connect with your audience.
4. I don’t need marketing, I need more leads.
Oh boy. This one should cause a war between marketing departments and sales teams. Sales will complains that marketing isn’t getting them leads, and marketing will complain that sales teams aren’t using the materials or the process developed by its department.
Instead, squash the war of two worlds by focusing on helping customers and potential customers. In a world where you can obtain information about nearly every single product or service on the planet, consumers are already doing their research before they buy. Set yourself apart from your competitors by serving as a resource, anticipating their questions and additional needs before they ask. Use marketing channels like your website, lead capture forms, and customer relationship management tools like Salesforce, CapsuleCRM or Zoho to get the most out of your customer and prospect data.
5. I never look at my analytics.
Though this sentence continues to baffle me, I hear it on an almost daily basis. What this tells me is – you don’t know how analytics can help you, or you are scared by the concept of charts, data, graphs, and instead of digging deeper, you just ignore it. Analytics on your website, social media pages, email marketing and more can help you determine the effectiveness of your brand message, headlines, audience engagement, audience size, preferences, attention span, and more.
Why spend more time developing content that no one is reading? Or posting on social media when your followers are offline? Analytics can be the key to more effective execution and if you don’t want to look at them, hire someone to do this monthly and have them can share the results and suggestions with you.
What other phrases might be negatively affecting your marketing efforts?
I’d love to hear more as I’m sure this is only a sliver of the pie. Share your responses in the comments below!