Your Business Story is Marketing

Your Business Story is Marketing

Your story is who you are, and the same holds true for your business.

The question is how much attention does your business dedicate to what is arguably its most powerful marketing?

Tell a True Story

Ann Handley, author of Everybody Writes says, “What matters now is telling a true story well.” The truth has a way of shining through, and that’s especially relevant for business marketing.

Embedded within your business story is the vision that inspired it, the mission that it is committed to today, and even subtle qualities like your core values. This is why the first pages of most employee manuals tell the story of the company’s beginnings.

For my business in particular, we wanted our staff to know how hard we worked to get our business off the ground. Even important was communicating that everyone’s true boss was the customer.

In this regard, our story was training for our team. Given that they were our ambassadors, that makes it marketing too.

Curate and Archive Your Stories

The story of your company’s beginnings is just one of many that helps everyone associated with your business understand how it got here, what it believes, and what differentiates it from others in the community or industry.

Vision and mission statements have value, but unlike stories, they are seldom memorable. Big brands like McDonalds and Coke have archivists on staff to preserve and manage the evolution of the brand story. Shouldn’t your business be doing the same?

Any business that is actively blogging has a goldmine of stories to work with, but for the most part they are buried in the archives. The solution is to take the best of the best and give them new life by organizing them into eBooks or tutorials.

For example, a series of existing blog posts could become a training program to help customers get more value from your products and services. Media that helps customers after the sale is valuable marketing.

Own Your Stories

Your business story is being told everyday by your staff and customers, not to mention others in the community that may or may not have had a favorable experience with it. Therefore, it’s vital to have a central website you own that tells the truth.

Copyblogger Media is a company that methodically aggregates its best blog content to create eBooks and tutorials for helping entrepreneurs. It’s a practice I am now undertaking, and its implementation just got easier with a new website building platform developed by Copyblogger.

The name of the platform is Rainmaker, and it promises to revolutionize Internet marketing for entrepreneurs.

One of the Rainmaker slogans is: “Media not marketing.” In other words, share stories that educate and inspire your community. That truthful media is what sells today. However, the challenge for building your media website has been the cost, lack of education, and technical skills for getting the job done – but no more!

Having already signed up with the Rainmaker platform, I can assure you that if you know how to blog or upload a video to YouTube, then you now have the skills to build a hosted WordPress website that is beautiful, mobile response, SEO optimized, has eCommerce capabilities, and is safe from hackers. They will even help you import your content from your current site.

I’m currently building a new site with Rainmaker that will offer lots of free content, and also virtual training for people to learn at their own pace. The plan is to roll it out over the coming months.

You can get the complete Rainmaker story here. Even if you don’t use their platform, take advantage of the free content to make your website a better marketing machine.

Are you planning to build a new website? We believe the New Rainmaker platform is the future for small business websites. That is why we are partnering with New Rainmaker to help businesses build their essential home o the web.

About the Author:  Jeff Korhan, MBA, is the author of Built-In Social: Essential Social Marketing Practices for Every Small Business and host of This Old New Business podcast.

He helps mainstream businesses adapt their traditional growth practices to a digital world. Connect with Jeff on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, and Google+

Internet: The New Super Bowl of Marketing

The Super Bowl is an annual ritual that captures the attention of millions.

This blend of entertainment is an orchestrated process of marketing the game itself, half-time show, and of course, the line-up of television advertising spots, but still entertainment online companies as adult services like use online marketing to advertise their products and get more results of it

This massive stage has elevated advertising to a celebrated art form, but is it still relevant?

For brands and their media partners, Super Bowl ads offer the opportunity for influencing a massive, global audience. However, so does the Internet.

It’s a New Ball Game

We are witnessing the dawn of a new era in which brand awareness is created in new ways that are within the reach of nearly every business, large or small.  It’s a new ball game.

This year you will not see the little E*Trade baby promoting its brand, because the company has ended its 7 year marketing relationship with this platform. According to its Sr. VP of Branding, E*Trade is reallocating its resources to better target their audience of key prospects and customers.

How about you?

Is your business reallocating marketing resources to ensure its future relevancy?

Build Your Own Super Bowl

Brands invest considerable resources into those Super Bowl ads, and they can achieve measurable results. The problem is they receive little residual value, having to then show up next year to do it again, often at a higher price.

Marking the 30 year anniversary of a watershed moment, the iconic Apple 1984 Super Bowl commercial is being celebrated as the greatest Super Bowl commercial of all time. This was clearly the right medium for Apple to reach a massive audience to promote the launch of the Macintosh.

Yet, in these Internet days anyone can reach a massive audience, and certainly Apple and other giant brands are capable of doing that on their own. This is the opportunity for Apple, eTrade, and mainstream small businesses like yours and mine.

If your business is going to invest the resources to create high quality media, should it not also use a platform where it can manage, control, and literally own that media forever?

What’s interesting is it is actually easier for people than businesses to build an audience today, at least for small businesses. This says something about the future of brands.

Brands are now personal, and they will favor platforms that amplify those qualities.

If your brand is your promise, isn’t that promise more powerful when it is personal?

This is why businesses are smartly using content marketing and social media to engage their audience by helping them, answering questions, and otherwise solving their most relevant problems.

Now You Are The Media

In addition to building their own audience, brands are recognizing that advertising and marketing as we know it are changing. The truth is we probably shouldn’t even call this marketing.

Content marketing is a means for using media, especially social media, to help your customers, thereby attracting a larger following that can ideally benefit from your products and services.

Content marketing is giving your customers what they want, and in many circumstances, what they need but do not even know they want.

Is that marketing?

The truth is this works, and that is why businesses large and small are creating useful content so that they can also package an advertising message within it too.

Content is an investment that has staying power, especially if there is a timeless aspect to it. It is the rare commercial such as Apple 1984 that earns that quality.

Stop Marketing and Create Media

Marketing these days is a new game. In fact, many of us are wondering if we should be calling it marketing any more – or maybe we just need a new definition of marketing.

Unlike traditional Super Bowl marketing, content that lives on the web has the potential to achieve a greater reach over time. So, think of your blog as a syndicated television series of content that gets replayed for years to come.

Your content marketing is the show.

The Internet is the Super Bowl.

Any questions?

About the Author:  Jeff Korhan, MBA, is the author of Built-In Social: Essential Social Marketing Practices for Every Small Business – (Wiley 2013)  

He helps mainstream businesses adapt their traditional growth practices to a digital world. Connect with Jeff on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, and Google+.

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