What scary things keep you up at night as a small business owner? Everybody has frightening marketing tasks lurking under their bed, and rather than face those terrors, many of us lie there, covers pulled up tight under our chin, paralyzed with fear.
This Halloween, I want us all to shine a flashlight under our bed, see that there is nothing to be afraid of, and master then 7 terrifying things you must do to achieve small business success.
1. The Ancient Vampire
A lot of people feel like popular social media sites are the domain of high-school and college aged kids. I have clients that stay away from social media for just that reason, after all, nobody wants to feel like Bela Lugosi’s Dracula at a party attended by the vampires from Twilight! Well, most social media sites are used by a variety of people and ages, and most importantly, it can provide an enormous return on investment.
2. Frankenstein’s Monosyllabic Monster
I have had friends and family come up to me and say, “I really liked your blog post, it made me think of this…” to which I reply, “wow, that’s a great insight! Why didn’t you leave a comment?!” That question is usually met with a shrug or a sheepish response about looking stupid, like Frankenstein’s monster lumbering into the conversation shouting “FIRE BAD!” The more you engage with social media or blogs, the more people will get a feeling of who you are, and people are more comfortable doing business with people they feel they know.
3. The Unfeeling Trolls
In my opinion, there is nothing scarier than posting a picture of video of yourself in the internet. If you have ever read comments on a news site or public forum, you know that the anonymity offered by the web can turn people into the most vile of creatures, a troll. Your picture of video will help what you’re saying stand out and will really engage your audience. And I can tell you from personal experience, that unless you are posting your picture of video under a bridge, you probably won’t run into any trolls.
4. The Solitary Werewolf
If you’ve seen any werewolf movies, you’ve probably noticed that the werewolves who avoid taking a silver bullet to the chest are the ones that ask for help. Now, I’m not suggesting that you ask your clients to chain you inside of a cage during a full moon, but you should definitely feel comfortable asking for likes, positive reviews, and referrals. The simple act of asking your customers to do that will greatly increase the chances that they will.
5. The Disappearing Ghost
There is something more terrifying then encountering a ghost in a dark hallway, only to have them vanish before your eyes, and that’s seeing your money vanish out of your bank account. The decision to invest your hard earned money into your online marketing is a difficult one, but if done wisely, it’s one that will produce results. A new website, search engine optimization, professional photography and/or copy can transform your business, and there are options out there that are affordable. Don’t be scared to invest, it will help you achieve small business success.
6. The Shambling Zombie Horde
A zombie horde, all slowly shambling in the same direction. Is this how your customers see you and your competitors? Just because your competitors aren’t using Facebook, videos, or a great website doesn’t mean that you should be afraid to try it, in fact, it might just be the reason that you should! Break from the horde and try some different techniques. Your customers (and probably competitors) will take notice and you can set yourself up as a leader in your industry.
7. The Entombed Mummy
Writing honestly about your profession and discussing the “hows” and “whys” you do things will make your customers respect you and establish your credibility. I have clients that have great tips and tricks that they could post on the internet, but they insist on keeping these secrets wrapped up tight like a mummy. Don’t be afraid to unwrap those bandages a little. It will make for excellent content, and give you customers a reason to keep coming back to see what you have to say.
So, this Halloween, after you’ve blown the candle out in your jack-o-lantern and removed all of the candy that looks “suspicious” (i.e. – candy you want) from your children’s trick-or-treat bags, think about the fears that are keeping you from utilizing the web to transform your business. Facing your fears is the best way to make them go away, and I promise that the boogey-man that has been keeping you from achieving small business success is not nearly as frightening as you have made him out to be.
Have I missed a scary monster? Leave a comment and let’s expose him to the light of day! Happy Halloween!