Making a Mark with Marketing . . . How Are You Making Yours? 12/19/11
By Ivan Misner
Marketing isn’t something I was always confident about. When I first started out in business, my degrees were in Political Science and Organizational Behavior. I had very little marketing experience until I went to work for a transportation company in Southern California and, within a two week span, went from a role in purchasing to a significant role in marketing–a huge change that was an even bigger learning experience.
My marketing experience was trial by fire and reading. I just started reading books on marketing and learned as I went, and it was that experience that gave me enough knowledge to do some marketing on my own when I later set out as a business consultant.
If somebody had asked me when I was 25 where I saw myself career wise in thirty years, I would have had no clue that my career would be all about marketing . . . that I would be the Chairman of the world’s largest referral marketing organization. Sometimes we go places in life we never expected to go but I wouldn’t change a thing about the career path I chose. I am passionate about helping people grow their businesses and achieve great success through effective referral marketing and after spending over two decades devoted to this work; I really enjoy knowing that the work I do allows me to pass on the marketing knowledge and experience I’ve attained in order to benefit to others.
I was recently asked what my top marketing tip would be and I think it’s really all about building the brand–either the brand of the company or of the individual, depending on the kind of business that you’re in. Name recognition–that’s the biggest challenge, especially for small companies. It’s not the same for everybody because every business is a little different and people’s skill sets are different. For me, in my business, brand building has largely been about writing. Before the internet I was trying to get articles in newspapers and magazines. Now it’s much, much easier. In this age of blogs and social media, even small companies have a global reach. The problem is all the white noise that’s out there: with so many people wanting a piece of the action you have to be able to stand out. So, for me, the top marketing tip would be to write, write, write. Become an expert in your field so people want to follow you because when they follow you, they’re more likely to do business with you.
I’d love to hear how you’re making your mark with marketing–what is your top marketing tip for the other business owners out there reading this blog?