Sporadic Marketing Syndrome is something that many small businesses suffer the impact of. This blog defines the challenges this causes for businesses and offers some actionable solutions.
What Is Sporadic Marketing Syndrome
Sporadic Marketing Syndrome is phrase that I coined, recently, whilst recording my Avoiding Marketing Mayhem, Be Better With Tracy Heatley, podcast episode. Honestly, I don’t know why I didn’t think of this phrase sooner. It does indeed, sum up perfectly, some of the key issues that business owners have with small business marketing. For a variety of reasons, many small businesses dip in and out of marketing. This can have a devastating impact on the future of the business, perceptions, reputation, popularity, sales, and profits.
Inconsistent marketing must be nipped in the bud to avoid peaks and dips in future sales revenue. Moreover, to make certain that you maximise opportunities and continue to be seen by your target audience. Your potential customers need to have trust in your brand. A key way to win trust is through consistent marketing and keeping your brand in the mind’s eye of your future customers.
When Sporadic Marketing Syndrome Occurs
Sporadic Marketing Syndrome often occurs when small business owners are too busy to be consistent with marketing activities. Fitting marketing in around other business functions is common for small business owners. Whilst this isn’t ideal, and it contradicts my marketing mindset, I’m a business owner, too, so I totally understand the demands of running a small business.
A primary cause of Sporadic Marketing Syndrome is when small business owners have ups and downs with the number of incoming contracts, sales, or orders—resulting in fluctuations in busyness within the business and marketing activities. Consequently, this is one of the biggest challenges for most small business owners. Getting new customers, securing new deals, or winning new contracts is great. However, if these things take up so much time to fulfil that marketing is neglected, undoubtedly, it’s a problem.
Another challenge is a constant lack of time to do any marketing at all. This is an awful situation to be in, especially if you’re the type of person who is persistently thinking about all the things that you must do. Knowing what you should be doing, and lacking time, often adds even more pressure. Consequently, the negative internal dialogue begins. Resulting in a massive shift in mindset and motivation. Adding a fear of failure and a lack of knowledge to the mix can also result in marketing inactivity. Many of my Marketing Mentoring clients used to suffer from some of these issues. Concurrently, feeling overwhelmed. They were subconsciously backing away from doing any marketing and missing out on many opportunities. It really is a catch-twenty-two situation, but all these problems can be resolved!
How To Avoid Sporadic Marketing
If you recognise some of the problems that sporadic marketing is causing you and your business, then you need to know how to avoid it. Here’s a few simple measures that you can implement to relieve undue pressure, begin putting a few simple steps into practice, and forming new habits. The good news is, you only need to allocate small segments of time to gain momentum and create a positive impact.
Have A Marketing Strategy And Plan
Every business needs a marketing strategy and a plan. This will be your road map to help guide you to reaching your goals. Decide what you want to achieve and plan how you will achieve it. If you’ve already got a strategy and plan in place, you can move quickly and easily onto the next phase of your marketing journey.
If you haven’t yet got a strategic plan, or it’s all in your head, set aside time to do this. Putting things down on paper will help you with clarity, direction, focus, and taking action. Even if you jot things down as a rough draft, for now, it will help. Get something down on paper, so it absorbs into your subconscious mind, and the marketing momentum can begin. There’s a psychological shift when we write things down. It sends the right messages to our brain, which results in action. I’m confident this will be a good starting point for you! If you cannot allocate the time to do this, then outsource it to a marketing professional.
Break Things Down Into Small Chunks
Firstly, relieve the pressure by breaking things down into small chunks. Yes, you need to have a long-term vision for your business and a marketing mission. Keep those in mind but stop focusing on everything you would like to do and take it step-by-step. As you think about where you want your business to be, set achievable marketing objectives that complement your overall business objectives.
Next, break things down into ninety-day plans. Be realistic with this, and ensure you’re including what you know you can achieve in ninety days. I know from experience that it’s easy to include what you would like to achieve. However, you must focus on what you know you can achieve. There’s a fine line between pushing yourself to achieve and putting additional undue pressure on yourself, so it’s crucial to find the right balance. Otherwise, you may find yourself feeling overwhelmed and subconsciously backing off again. Don’t let that Sporadic Marketing Syndrome creep back in. If ninety days is still too much for you, chunk down even further into monthly or even weekly plans. You’ll find the right fit for you! Chunking down is the way to get started. Start small to build big!
Hold Yourself Accountable
I recently read a Harvard Business Review article by author and keynote speaker Dianna Kander. She explained the psychology of holding yourself accountable. The more successful we become, the less accountability we have. Moreover, there is a direct correlation between having an accountability partner and achieving goals. The results of a formal study highlighted some interesting results. Evidently, sharing goals with someone you know can boost your chances of achieving your goals by sixty-five per cent. However, sharing your goals with someone you meet with regularly catapults your success rate to a whopping ninety-five per cent!
Having an accountability partner or mentor could give your business a massive marketing success boost. So, share your goals with someone you trust to help keep you on track. Ninety per cent of my marketing mentoring clients confirmed that if I wasn’t mentoring them, they wouldn’t be succeeding with their business marketing. Accountability is essential for them. If it’s not with a professional marketing mentor like me, do open up to someone else within your inner circle. It could be the difference between success and failure!
Don’t Should All Over Yourself
Many years ago, during a Tony Robbins training session I attended, he said, “If you’re not careful, you’ll should all over yourself”. You should all over yourself! This was invaluable to me, and I hope it will be to you too. It’s so easy to know that you should be starting or should be doing more of, but doing it is another thing entirely. Do you think now will be a good time to get started? If you are verbalising or thinking I should do this, or I should do that, take heed, get cracking and take action! You can do this!
Have A Growth Mindset
Despite all my formal academic qualifications, I’d be nothing without a growth mindset. It’s helped me to be open to ideas, accept the unexpected, turn negatives into positives, be agile, learn, grow, and succeed. Like everything in life, mindset matters when it comes to marketing. To quote the founders of the training company, Grow Your Mindset, “It’s not who you are that holds you back. It’s who you think you’re not”.
In summary, consistency is key to small business marketing success. A small amount of marketing activity on a regular basis is far better than having none or being sporadic with it. Avoid Sporadic Marketing at all costs, and get your business on track. Get a marketing mentor or personal support to help you along the way.
I hope you’ve found this information about Sporadic Marketing Syndrome useful. More business, marketing, networking, and guest blogs are available for you, along with other free resources, like my new book reviews page, podcasts (with transcripts) and radio interviews with other successful business owners.