I’m sure you’ve hired a cringe-worthy sales rep in your time, but you’ve never once thought that you should stop hiring salespeople. As business owners, we realize that a failure to meet a sales quota has to do with the individual salesperson. You don’t give up on the knowledge that outside sales is effective just because you had a failed experiment.

So why do you give up so quickly on marketing?

I meet a lot of business owners who have decided not to invest in marketing. Often, this decision is based on a misperception that prevents them from seeing the bigger picture. Businesses experience multiple opportunities a day where marketing could make a big impact on their long-term growth.


Experience #1: Same old, same old.

You haven’t tried anything fundamentally different in 20 years of business when it comes to marketing – except build a website.

What You’re Missing

If you do what you always do, you get what you always get.

The modes of marketing have multiplied in the last 10 years alone. Almost 70% of the U.S. population uses Facebook. If you don’t think Facebook advertising is for you, you may want to think again. In many ways, B2B companies are better off reaching their ideal client leveraging targeted Facebook advertising than attempting to knock on their door.

Also in the past 10 years websites have moved from electronic brochures to competitive lead generators. First, your website needs to answer the questions your prospective customers are searching for. Second, it needs to have an easy way for those prospects to request more information – through email, chat, a scheduling tool, or a contact form. Your company’s digital sales pipeline can be as lucrative as the traditional one.

Experience #2: Overlooking the real potential of existing customers.

You are not profiling your existing customers to understand what they are buying and when.

What You’re Missing

The low hanging fruit.

It is easier and less expensive to incrementally sell to existing customers than it is to go out and find new ones. Many companies never think to leverage their good reputation within one department to work with another department at the same company. Or to cross-sell products and services until a customer is truly buying all that they should. Analyze buying habits. Look for trends and opportunities to grow your business along with your customer’s.


Experience #3: Inconsistent (or inexistent) customer communication.

Aside from servicing an account, your customers have no access to knowledge about your company’s new products, additional services, growth, or industry expertise.

What You’re Missing

You’re not even in the game.

If you aren’t at the very least communicating with every prospect and every customer one time per month, how do you expect to stay top of mind when they have a need or an opportunity to refer you?

It used to be that someone saw a message seven times before it resonated with them. In this more cluttered, multi-tasking world that number has increased to nine or 10. Some business owners say they hate email, direct mail, or pop-up ads, but that doesn’t mean they are not effective. The truth is, when you are out of sight you are out of mind.

Experience #4: Analysis Paralysis

Your team has the right intentions for building brand awareness, but obsessive overthinking is preventing progress of any kind.

What You’re Missing

A sales mentality.

Email marketing, social media posting, and digital advertising are very important but at the same time insignificant. They are all important from a consistency standpoint, but one message isn’t going to work for everyone. If you have identified a company that you should be doing business with, does your salesperson quit reaching out after one unanswered voicemail? No. You would expect them to try 15 different ways to wake the contact up to a problem, position your company as the solution, and close the deal. We do the same thing in marketing communication. The more you err on the side of activity, the faster you will find the messages that generate the response you are looking for.

Sales and marketing are one and the same – sales is just one-to-one what marketing is one-to-many. Sure, looking back, you may have had some bad marketing hires or failed experiments. But like salespeople, those experiences should serve as a valuable influence for future decisions, not a reason to throw in the towel.
Gravity Marketing is celebrating 10 years in the business. That’s 10 years of growing client businesses alongside our own. It’s also 10 years of trial and error, risk and reward, lessons learned, and problems solved. In this series, Gravity Marketing’s president and founder, Mike Kuharske, shares the top insights he’s gained over 10 years as an entrepreneurial marketer.