One form of powerful marketing communication is networking – historically known as talking to people in business! At a networking gathering, I now belong to, feedback was requested on what people most wanted help with. Out of the two requests that emerged, one was that people starting out in small business want to know how to market their businesses effectively.
For a split second, I thought to volunteer, but then I remembered the last time I did that…
In my first year as founder and teacher at Blarney Studio, I was invited to be the keynote speaker at the 2001 Guild of Speech and Drama Teachers in South Africa. The requested topic was how to market a Speech and Drama studio. Looking back, I think it appeared quite remarkable that I went from zero to three or four full classes of students, seemingly overnight (the truth of course was that I had spent 9 months laying the groundwork and by January, I had interviewed and accepted all the students I wanted). My audience were older, more experienced teachers. They were affectionately, secretly known as the Blue Rinse Brigade!
Just imagine talking about marketing in a world with…
- no Facebook,
- no LinkedIn,
- no Twitter,
- no Smartphones – mobiles, known as cells in SA, were only used for phoning!
- websites that only large organisations had, never mind blogs or vlogs!
- Google as a virtually unknown entity, never mind existing as a verb,
- no formally organised business networking groups.
And the question people asked after spending weeks preparing and practising my talk: “How do you make sure people pay you?” Really funny but sad at the same time. Fortunately, I had a speculative answer although I had never given it a moment’s thought. Turns out, it was the correct one as I have never had an issue with bad debt. One non-payment of £20 in the UK in 18 years is a pretty good record. Get in touch if you want to know my answer.
I would be loath to do a talk on marketing your business today unless it was a trip down memory lane for amusement’s sake!! But it did lead me to check out an article on the evolution of the mobile phone and others about the year various aspects of the internet started. Very interesting.
Nowadays, I’m thankfully established and focused on helping people to market themselves through interviews, presentations or public speaking. Whew! If that’s something I can help you or your organisation with, do get in touch here.