While I was still in college, I was at an entrepreneurial conference that was held for university students. It was called CEO and it was all about inspiring students to really go at that start up life. I remember at one of these sessions I was listening to a senior discuss what had helped him be successful. He had started a college start up that helped men deliver gifts to their girlfriends. I know right, a college senior WOULD create a business like that.30
Anyways, one of the things that he mentioned to us was the concept of being present. He said that 90% of it is being there. Its so easy to stay in bed and make up every different excuse not to go somewhere. The real success though is making that effort to leave your door and be present. Its been some years since I heard those words, but man have they rung true. Especially in Marketing.
Being Present in Marketing
In marketing we are plagued with many problems. One of those things include gaining someone’s attention. We often cannot get attention because we ask for it only when we need it. That isn’t the best recipe. Its like when a door to door salesman comes to sell you something. They don’t know you, you don’t know them and they are there really only to sell you something. That is it.
Of course, sometimes this works. Especially when the salesman happens to offer something of incredible value that you may need at the time. However, when thousands of companies and millions of salesmen and marketers are vying for your attention, its harder to get that lucky. Its the same reason why major sportswear companies like Nike hire athletes to market their brand. It’s because as consumers, we trust those athletes decision.
Here is where as a business you need to learn to be present. You have to locate places where you can add value. Maybe its at a local Chamber of Commerce, an online forum or a social media chat. Here’s where that college senior’s advice ring true. You have to be present, that is 90% of the success. If you expect to go in guns blazing, trying to sell your product in forums and chats where people don’t know you, you are likely to get burned.
You need to put in the work before. Be present, put in that 90%. Go to those located targets earlier and don’t sell. Participate in conversation and be present.