Should You Pursue a New Marketing Opportunity?

by Tim Francis on November 9, 2012

The more and more that I cruise through the marketing world, the more and more possibilities come flooding in.  Google Adwords, Social Media, Video Marketing, Publicity, SEO, blah, blah, blah….

Truth be told,

“You can do anything, but you can’t do everything.”

And I now firmly believe that doing one or two things really well will outperform and outprofit “many” things done lightly.  It’s the old adage…

“The Fox who chases many hares, catches none at all”

Should You Pursue a New Marketing Opportunity?

For any opportunity, I would carefully consider a few questions:

1) Traffic – Conversions – Economics

  • Traffic:  Will this opportunity bring me more traffic?…clicks to my website, foot traffic to my store, calls to my sales desk, etc.
  • Conversions:  Will this opportunity help me to improve conversions?…a higher percentage of people moving to the next step of the sales funnel?
    • From visitor to lead
    • lead to prospect
    • prospect to buyer
    • buyer to repeat buyer
    • repeat buyer to giving referrals
    • etc.
  • Economics:  Will this opportunity improve the profitability of my sales funnel?  Can I affordably pursue this channel, and long enough to make it profitable for me?
    • Example 1: Replacing a salesperson (responsible for repetitive sales tasks) with automated software dramatically improves economics to the tune of $50K+ per sales rep you can avoid hiring. “Overhead walks on 2 feet”… avoid 10 salespeople and that’s a half-million in savings, or more. (Obv. you still need salespeople, but there’s often lots of fat to be trimmed.)
    • Example 2: switch from low-conversion print ads to high-conversion Google Adwords… probably cut your ad spend, and also improve profits along the way too. (Note: Adwords doesn’t always outperform other media.)
  • Relationship between all three: the marketing channel you’re considering – have you considered if the numbers work for traffic, conversions, and economics? If any of the three is missing, it’s probably not worth pursuing.

2) How does this fit into my overall plans?

Will this new initiative make sense within my overall plans, or will it just distract me from my core money-making activities?

As Gary Halbert and John Carlton would call it, your job is “Operation Moneysuck”.  You need to focus on bringing in the money.  Everything else is secondary.  You need to let the other “stuff” – even if they’re mini-fires – roast away because you must, must, must be the one to bring in the money.

That’s your job.  No one else can do it.  Even if that means finding salespeople, or marketers, or whatever to help you, the money part is up to you and you alone.  The buck really does stop with you.

If a new opportunity is too much of a hinderance on your own “Operation Monseysuck”, don’t pursue it.

3) Am I stepping into a path that already has a demonstrated need?

Or are you trying to invent demand? (inventing demand is a baaaaaad idea).

The most successful, profitable businesses of all time have typically come from simply improving something that already existed.  For example:

  • Google was an improvment on Yahoo, Lycos, Netscape
  • Facebook was an improvement on MySpace
  • Apple’s iPod was in improvement on the initial mp3 player.

But where’s the Segway these days?

It’s Dust.

You know what happens to pinoeers: they end up with arrows in their back.

This also explains why business owners that start a business “doing what they love” often struggle, and that struggle makes them hate what they used to love.

The Result?  Now they’re broke and miserable.

4) Are You Speaking to Pre-Qualified People?

Never in a zillion years will you sell me basket weaving.  Or anything Twilight (the book / movie)  for that matter.

Could be the glitziest ad with the most famous celebrity, written by the most talented marketers, yet I still wouldn’t buy.  I’m just the wrong target audience for those products.

On the other hand, it would take very little to convince me to attend a Perry Marshall seminar.  You could have a mediocre sales letter / presentation, and I would still seriously consider it…. just by virtue of the face that Perry’s events present very relevant and tangible value to me.

If your marketing opportunity is putting you in front of too many of the wrong people, don’t do it.

5) Are You Sufficiently Committed?

…to work on this opportunity hard enough and looong enough (likely 6 months or more) to get it set up and generating sales for you?

Often marketing assets are like a 10-digit phone number: whether you dial 9 digits or none at all, you get the same outcome…. *nothing*.

You need to stay the course, and dial all 10 digits to get any results.  (But once you do, you can connect with the whole world…. exciting!)

Stay committed and focused: get one marketing asset setup, the move on to the next.  Get that one setup, then move on to the next.  Chip away sequentially like this, piece by piece.

So Should You Do It?

If you still aren’t sure, just pick a path and get started on that path…. even if the decision is to do nothing at all.  The fruits (or lack thereof) will show themselves quickly, and you’ll know what to do next.

Hope that helps you evaluate your opportunity!

Tim :)

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Pete November 9, 2012 at 5:11 pm

Great article Tim! There’s a million ways to make a million dollars, you just gotta choose 1 and FOCUS FOCUS FOCUS. There’s so much noise out there that its easy to get distracted. Love the Operation Moneysuck idea as well, one question I have to keep reminding me of, “is what I’m doing bringing in the money?”

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