I live in a growing neighbourhood where almost every other home is adding a 2nd storey. Not being slouches ourselves, we’ve also looked into this for our own bungalow. Guess what? Tradesmen and contractors won’t even talk to you about starting to work on your construction until you have one thing: an architectural drawing to get a city building permit. Without it, you don’t know how many rooms, walls, square feet the house will be. Therefore, without this drawing, you can’t ask painters, roofers and landscapers to do a plan or price out anything for you. It all starts with the blueprint. Notice, at no time in the building of the house, do any of the trades people say “oh, you don’t have a blueprint so we’ll guess at one for you and go from there”. That would be preposterous (and illegal) to build a house with a blueprint drawn up by the roofer, wouldn’t it? And yet we do this everyday in our businesses.
No Blueprint No Business Strategy
When your business doesn’t have the proverbial blueprint of who you’re going to target and what you’ll be a specialist in, and what will make you stand out from other businesses-that’s when you don’t have a business strategy. A mind-boggling majority of small businesses operate this way. They hang a shingle and through word-of-mouth or networks develop a critical mass where they don’t even worry about new business.
Marketing Comes Calling
Unfortunately they do eventually recognize that they need to have at least a functioning website and social media to be considered a proper player in their industry and hire a vendor for these tactics. These vendors (who themselves sometimes sadly don’t know that they should be handed the blueprint of the company’s business strategy) don’t get a clear strategy from the client. Then they guess at the strategy to be able to deliver their own portion of the work. So often you have a web designer, an SEO expert, an ad agency or even a sales rep trying to figure out who the business target should be and what the messaging should say. This is exactly like when a painter who is handed no house blueprint takes over the task of producing architectural drawings. It’s insane and it happens all the time in small business.
Like a house built on wonky plans, unsurprisingly the investment into the said tactic doesn’t work out. However, things don’t get questioned really until the business loses a client or wants to double or triple their growth trajectory but recognize that they don’t know how to do it. When CEOs are looking for revolutionary growth vs. evolutionary growth, a business strategy becomes a glaringly obvious need. This is the clincher: if you and your team knew how to create this evolution doing what you were doing, you would already have created it. So chances are that you’re in need of another strategic mind to help you through this hurdle. A good one costs money. I am always leery of companies price shopping experts because in my book, I want to hire the most expensive one first because price is the single biggest indicator about that company’s confidence in their results.
Good business strategy, like social media is NOT free. When you don’t pay experts (like me-yes, go ahead, call me self-serving as long as you get the warning message in this blog) for strategy and expect it to be free or to come from your own resources, you won’t get any further than you always did.
Want to reposition your messaging to grow your leads? Follow me on Twitter, friend me on Facebook, watch me on YouTube or connect with me on LinkedIn –and let’s talk