Fuel for Fire

If you or someone you know is struggling to drum up business, probably the last thing they need is a new logo, website or a costly marketing effort. I have seen too many small businesses and even larger organizations invest a good chunk of change into their image only to end up at the same place they started — struggling.

Spending any amount of time or money for your appearance will do nothing if your product or service is not offering value. It’s like wanting to tap into the trading and marketing industry so you spend $1,200 on a suit and another $600 on a briefcase and stand on Wall Street and hope you bump into a trading executive that will give you a foot in the door. Doesn’t make sense, does it? Sure, you may look professional but more than likely you are going to just look like your someone standing around in an expensive suit doing nothing.

This is fresh on my mind because I recently developed an identity package and website for a home builder that is having trouble finding new business. Never-mind the residential housing market is in the toilet and most people already know a homebuilder they like and trust. They have been in the area for more than 25 years and have no significant stream of business, no referrals. Absolutely no word of mouth. Odd right? Something isn’t adding up. Either they are not offering a product that people want or their processes are just too complex or painful to hold interest. Want to know how to kill your business? Be complicated, be painful and don’t worry about finding that one thing that people are interested in.

Save your money for fueling momentum instead of trying to create a spark.  You will know when your product or service is solid — you won’t be asking for help to drum up business, you will be asking for help in improving it or fueling it. Also, with the money that you saved, buy the book Rework by Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson. It will probably save you thousands more.

Know anyone who had to learn this lesson the hard way or is about to? Feedback

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