Nicola shared marketing planning advice, tips and strategies. I appreciated that she made her talk real by sharing her own experiences and development of her business; the successes, pitfalls and learning.
Her talk inspired me to consider the wider aspects of marketing. I put to Nicola and the group my thoughts stimulated by the talk. This led to a fulfilling and thought-provoking discussion from which, I feel, we all gained a lot.
Drawing on my areas of expertise in finance and management of SME’s and coaching, counselling and coach-therapy I am sharing here some of the points that I raised at the meeting:
- Set realistic goals. Too often when starting a business we can try to put everything in place at once and expect it to work immediately. If things do not go to plan there can be disillusion, procrastination, negative thinking and even giving up.
- How much time to spend on marketing. For me it is not only about time but where and how to market. Choose wisely. For example we can attend a number of events with no return and just one, the right one, will give us a step forward.
Mindset is important. Our approach to entrepreneurship will be affected by our past and present lifestyle, support, challenges and expectations; each person develops a record of their life. Some areas we discussed were how we are impacted by a fear of success, our relationship with money, our values and expectations of others in our lives. I know from my counselling and coaching work how important mindset is and how, with help, we can start to make positive changes and address that which does not support us as an entrepreneur.
- When is marketing marketing and not manipulation? I put this to Nicola and her input helped us to understand the pros and cons and her examples of how she works gave us insight into how to work with a potential client/customer for the best outcome.
- Values and authenticity. Belief in who we are and what it is we are offering and aligning this into our business. Clients/customers will in turn believe in the service/products we offer.
- Right place, right time. Does this happen or is it that we put in the hard work and learn where the ‘right places’ are? This is our return for our hard work.
- Fear of no income. We could all appreciate this and what it means to us. Taking every opportunity that comes along, working long hours and yet underselling our worth. Sharing in the moment was helpful to recognise that this fear is not just our own but felt by others. Coaching can help an entrepreneur with this negative thinking. Nicola also shared some guidance from her running her own business.
- ‘Hook onto research’. Use work done by others as it has been validated.
We acknowledged that for Redbridge start-ups to grow and be successful it is important to have support, not feel isolated, network and be able to share. The Entrepreneurs’ Club offers the place for this to happen.
Janet Barrett of Janet Barrett Consulting