Thursday, 10 March 2016 14:27

Is Searching for a Magic Silver Bullet a Robust Business Strategy?

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Or, are you wasting time, money, and damaging your Reputation?

With over twenty years of experience in Internet marketing and development, we prefer to have a common sense discussion with potential clients about realistic results from using the Internet to market their business, with using websites and social media. But some business owners mistakenly believe it is the Internet is a “ magic and offers a silver bullet” to solve their issues. They have concluded that they, and only they, have the uncovered a secret formula that solves all their problems and best of all, it is FREE!. Most of this misinformation and false confidence comes from charlatans we call FIPs, that is, Fake Internet Professionals.

This magic-bullet line of thinking is growing more common, a frightening chapter to say the least, as it indicates a lack of understanding about the Internet by C-level execs who should know better. We see those desperate business owners who that lack business experience are being preyed upon. Many FIPS come from the graphic designer, computer repair people, interns, or several other specialties with little or no practical experience in the field. Many markets and promote themselves as Internet experts, but in fact, they are only familiar enough with the subject to talk a good sales pitch. They are self-proclaimed experts, having without a no track record. They’ll imply that only they have the magic silver bullet on how for building revenue-generating websites and social media strategies. The problem is, they only know what they know, and it is usually not a whole lot. They frequently lack basic, entry-level expertise, such as how to transfer hosting and registrations, and agreements. Business leaders with a less than an essential understanding of marketing and the Internet only seem to hear ‘It’s free. ”You know how free works; it is always and has always been the most expensive option in terms of time, dollars and Reputation.

FIPs, in the marketing and the Internet industries, are not new but seem to be proliferating. Worse, and more, frightening is that more business owners are buying into this silver bullet myth. The focus is on the distribution tools, like the free WordPress blog platforms with free hosting and domain registration.* In those cases, even I if you do buy the domain, you do not own it. The hosting platform or the FIP does.., posting on social media, and doing an e-newsletter. The emphasis should instead be on creating quality original content with a customer-focused messaging. The FIPs place emphasis on the platform and distribution channels instead of the message, because they don’t have the ability or expertise to develop content focused on the customers. When businesses succumb to the silver bullet spell as a solution, they tend to lose sight of some important business basics, such as excellent customer service, realistic sales goals, and marketing to your identified target audiences. They have met ill-set goals and are hiding behind and poorly designed and maintained websites and social media delegated to FIPs.

Four outcomes when dealing with an FIP that takes advantage of business owners:
Most FIPs are not Internet professionals at all. Previous careers may include, but are not limited to graphic design, computer repair, and photography.

Some all- too- frequent outcomes include:

1. Damages to Reputations by distributing outdated/inaccurate marketing messages.
2. Adding no value or proven knowledge of the modern marketing process.
3. Making vague promises like, “We submit your posts to 35 websites,” but cannot or will not provide a list of those sites.
4. Empty results that do not achieve promised expectations, and no built-in means to track what works and what doesn’t.

Practices used by FIPs usually have long-lasting adverse effects on the business’s bottom line and Reputation. The FIP’s misdirected objective is to exploit the general lack of understanding of how the Internet works. Unfortunately, by not having knowledge themselves, these unscrupulous people create business setbacks with negative results. Business owners, who frequently possess only a surface understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of the Internet, buy into the magical rhetoric. The leaders forge onward knowing something does not seem to add up, but hope that they have found that silver bullet It’s the “build a website and become a millionaire” mantra. The FIP’s are using false promises and unrealistic expectations/results as a means of taking advantage of small business owners. When did FREE ever work out for you?

Successful and responsive businesses are moving from a Traditional Branding strategy towards a Modern Reputation strategy of doing business. The distribution of the same old message, one that is not connecting or building relationships with customers just drives clients with reasons to your competitors. It’s not straightforward, but the answer is to transition to a Reputation strategy and change the messaging to one that resonates with the shopper or potential client.

Business owners cannot outsource or delegate the marketing function of the company. First, who is qualified and responsible for content for your business? Are graphic designers, computer repair people, or interns equipped to generate content for your industry? What guidance has been provided to them? There lays the problem; Businesses cannot afford to delegate marketing; they can only delegate a proven process of marketing. Delegating without guidance is irresponsible and foolhardy.

There are FIPs everywhere in business, but there are also QUALIFIED experts available to assist you in implementing meaningful change. Using such professionals will not be free or cheap by any means, but it will pay dividends in increased sales and customer loyalty. There is a world of difference between “cost” and “costly.

Last modified on Friday, 11 March 2016 12:53
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