Who Should You Listen to When it Comes to Marketing, Branding & USP?

A heated discussion started this past week when I referred to an article published by Michael Masterson on Clayton Makepeace’s website. Here’s the article. Opinions began to soar, people began to interject long paragraphs on my Facebook page about why they thought (respectfully) that Michael was wrong and while they do many times love Clayton, but they thought he wasn’t on target either. My first response was, “Who the heck are you?”… but I took the better approach in writing and asked for proof on their opinions. Few gave any.

Now before I go any further please know that I respect and follow Michael Masterson and Clayton Makepeace very carefully. It has never been my position to prove them wrong or to see whether or not what they are teaching is true. Why would I take such a position? Because their track record in business, marketing and copywriting is much better than my own. They are already proven, not on trial and are a braggable asset to so many successful companies that my opinion is to listen to and trust them.

When I mentioned this on Facebook ironically someone had an argument for that as well. They felt I should respect all perspectives and give everyone a chance to voice their opinion. That it didn’t matter how much money they made.

My response was that while I respect and honor all people, you are not worth your salt at all if you can’t make money with your marketing and copywriting skills. People don’t hire and rehire a marketer because they are innovative, fun and a very nice person. These are wonderful added benefits if they come along with the biggest requirement- they can create cash with their skill. If they can’t create cash with their marketing and copywriting they will go hungry and have skinny children.

Can you imagine applying this perspective to other industries?

Imagine a automobile mechanic who is innovative, has a unique perspective and is a very kind person…. however….they suggest you should put water, instead of oil, in your car. They believe wholeheartedly and recommend to all of their clients that people should really use purified H20 in their car and quit getting oil changes. Just add more H20 as you need it. Let’s go one step further and this person has a website, a big following on Facebook and even on Twitter but the sad fact is, they are completely wrong. Putting H20 into a car instead of oil is not only stupid it is downright dangerous. Does this mean I respect their perspective and give them referrals and continue to bring my car to this business owner?

Sad isn’t it? When we lose touch with what creates results in the marketplace. What is a result anyways?

When someone says to me, “Well making money isn’t everything in business” I want to ask them what they mean by that.

Do they mean that they are financially independent, have no need to support themselves, have an enormous amount of time on their hands and use business as a hobby? Typically not. They typically mean this, “Even though I haven’t made any money in business please pretend like I’m successful because it makes me feel better.”

Yes, I just said that. If it irritated you it might be a good idea to stop reading.

I’ve been building businesses online for 14 years. There was a time period when I wasn’t actually building but was offline and sick for about 3 years. During this time however more than 2-3 times per year I was paid for advise regarding business and spent hours still, every single week, staying up to date on what was going on online in regards to business.

Before I came online I had run a profitable cleaning business, residential and commercial, as a single mom. I had also ran 2 health food stores, 1 gym and even did an errand service business at one point in my life. Coaching as a bodybuilder was a job I had as I ran the gym back in the late 80’s. In each case people paid me money for my service or product because of it’s value. The result was the bottom line. I’ve never been able to make money simply because people like me and enjoy being with me. Quite frankly the only profession I can think of that does that is immoral… but don’t worry I won’t go there.

What has happened in our world when calling yourself a ‘Business Owner’ is as common as anything? What ever happened to credibility, track record and results?

What is a business owner?

Dictionary: Business = Economic system in which goods and services are exchanged for one another or money, on the basis of their perceived worth.

Sandi interpretation: Business Owner= Economic system that has goods or services exchanged for one another or money, not just talking about it.

Just because anyone can put a website up doesn’t mean that everyone who has a website is a business owner. Just because there are thousands of home based business opportunities out there doesn’t mean that every person who has enrolled as a distributor is a business owner. Furthermore, just because someone has an opinion on USP, Branding, PPC and Marketing doesn’t mean they know what they are talking about.

MaryEllen Tribby cuts to the chase with this statement on mislead marketers:

“It is a whole different ballgame when you are actually responsible for growing a business. When you are the one to brainstorm, test, and roll out REAL marketing campaigns. When you are the one to either hire the copywriter or write the copy. When you craft an offer and select the media.

But the real game changer is when your actions and the results you produce are responsible for putting food in your kids’ mouths and a roof over your family’s heads.”

There’s no excuse for being misled and misguided when it comes to marketing. There is more information than any time in history to help you do extremely well in business. But be careful. Check for results. Don’t be misled by Madison Avenue styles and persuasion. Who cares what shoes a woman wears if she can’t produce results in her clients lives! Even if a dude knows all the NLP and LOA and manifestation strategies by heart if he can’t create repeated results and results that last in his clients lives (which means that they continue to profit even if they aren’t umbilical chord attached), how valuable is that person?

Just as I said on my Facebook wall the other day. I respect and honor all people but if you can’t create the moohlah you aren’t worth anything when it comes to Marketing.

I’ll close with this. Master the basics. Learn how to create a profit in one industry first. Quit trying to stretch yourself thin with ten mini-sites that are supposed to make you rich but have yet to create a dime. Work on one thing, one message, one focus and one business first. Take that to $ 100,000 and then build from there.

Have a good mentor. Look for someone who is currently actively doing what they teach. If they’ve lost some of their gusto and are still pitching the same ole same ole that made them money in 1999- look for a new mentor.

Pay attention to people like Clayton Makepeace and Michael Masterson. I’d also follow people like MaryEllen Tribby and Bob Bly. Rich Schefren is the person that many refer to but won’t give away his identity. (You know, the sales copy that says this “big marketer who you’d know who he was if I told you but I won’t”) type thing. Rich has a list of clients he’s served- check it out. He isn’t called the guru to the gurus because it was a cute thing to say and became his brand. It’s because many of the gurus online today weren’t worth a stinking penny online before they got some coaching from him.

Stay focused, build it hard and reach your goals. This alone will clear away allot of the confusion when it comes to finding out what really works in business- don’t be impressed with shiny objects and smiling faces.

Get results. It’s the only thing you can take to the bank!