Last night I gave a presentation to a group of 17 people that are in the process of getting their business ideas off the ground. My talk was about using online media to grow your business.
One of the students asked, “how much time should we spend on marketing?” I think I shattered some dreams when I said about half of your time.
Unless you are a seasoned entrepreneur, most people get into business because
- they don’t want to work for someone else
- they have a product or service that they love and are passionate about it
- they want to make lots of money and
- they want time freedom and flexibility
The reality is, to start and build a business is more about getting your message to the right target market than it is producing a great product or delivering a great service. If you are starting a business where you are doing most of the work you have to be the CEO, the financial controller, the salesperson, the marketer, the customer service person as well as delivering the product or service.
If you don’t have the resources to employer or contract a dedicated marketing person then you are going to have to do it yourself and it will take up half of your time.
If you are offering a service then you have to consider
- employing someone else to provide all of part of that service
- charge a high enough hourly rate, that you can earn a full income from providing that service half the time
- add a product to your service to increase your income for your given output
If you are offering a product then you have to consider
- creating a production team to make the products for you
- outsourcing the production to another company, but make sure you still have lots of margin to make a product
If you really hate marketing or really don’t want to do it, then consider finding a business partner that is strong in marketing and loves doing it so you can spend the time doing what you love.