I was rereading the excellent book Differentiate Or Die which burst onto every marketers book shelf (and this is hard to believe) 11 years ago. While the reality of how important differentiation is to your competitive position remains the same, the environment in which you must market that differentiation has changed radically. Consider the following passage:
…Marketing is a game fought in the mind of the prospect. You need money to get into a mind. And you need money to stay in the mind once you get there.
You’ll get further with a mediocre idea and a million dollars than with a great idea alone.
When those words were written the marketplace operated differently. Today, you don’t need a million dollar marketing budget. That is revolutionary. But you still need to get into a mind or two or forty or a thousand.
So here are 10 things you can do that will cost you little or no money – but will require focus, commitment and execution.
- Write a press release for the news section of your website every month.
- Add a blog to your website.
- Commit to a minimum of 4 blog articles each month.
- Increase your activity on LinkedIn.
- Get serious about Twitter – engage, look for a following, and touch it multiple times each day.
- Blow the dust off your Facebook page and begin a regimen of daily status updates.
- Develop 3 downloadable white papers for your website.
- Schedule monthly webcasts for prospects and customers.
- Look for opportunities to speak to groups and set a goal of at least one a month.
- Freshen up your email marketing using both a macro and micro approach.
Once you have gotten comfortable in this regimen, any money that you then invest in it will pay back higher dividends – for example, paid distribution for your press releases, pay-per-click ads on LinkedIn and Facebook, or hiring a writer to assist you in developing more white papers.
It is not money that is holding you back. It’s your decision to do the work and create the content. With the revolutionized marketplace turning to Google and other search engines to find the products and services they need, certainly money can help you be found, but it’s not required to be found.