Information Society

Small Business Marketing: Being Competitive In An Information Society

Information SocietyWe live and work in an information society. A world where ‘Content is King’. A world of oversupply that is riddled with competitor attack. A society where choice is endless.

What does this mean?

What are the implications?

How do we get a foothold and the attention of those that we are meant to serve?

What is an Information Society?

A few years ago I was in the final stages of closing a deal, an entry level deal, with a multi-million dollar company in the Middle East. Seriously, I mean entry level, we’re talking less than $1,000. As with anything that is not a transaction, it was a long, complex, arduous process. As the end was in sight and payment was being approved I learned that the CEO himself was approving all purchases and writing the check.

This was bad for me. Very bad.

With this news came the realization that the CEO was approving purchases for all business matters, from all departments. The choice available to him, the options for him to purchase, all had merit and all had to be approved from ‘one pot of cash’.

This meant, that future agreements for higher paid offerings from us, would be more difficult to gain approval.

This complex decision making and these choices are the very cornerstone of an information society.

For you, for me, for everybody we are looking to as potential customers and clients.

An information society is a noisy environment where we are subject to literally thousands of messages every day from people wanting our time and, more than likely, money.

The implication of an information society is that if you are not engaging your audience, your competitors are.

The ramification of an this world of oversupply is that we are subject to choice. Too many choices and are often, like the CEO above, comparing apples to oranges to pears.

A client of mine once said, there is always something to spend $$$ on.

How To Be Competitive In An Information Society

“The number one way to be competitive in an information society is to be front of mind.” Tweet This

World of Over SupplyYes, being on the tip of someones tongue when they are thinking about the business you are in.

The brain is a magical, mystical thing. We are able to retain a HUGE amount of information in our conscious and subconscious. You have the opportunity to be part of that memory retention and to be called upon at the right time.

Now, there are several ‘layers’ to being competitive in this world. I’m not going to cover them all. (Sorry).

The two components I want to share are:

  1. Always be helping
  2. Nurture your audience

Always Be Helping

If you are engaged with a prospect and are in the midst of your sales process be the guide. Guide your potential paying advocate through your system while the rest of the world is talking at them. How? Outline simple, action steps they need to take at each stage in order to move forward. Offer to do as much as you can to help them. The essence? Make their life easy. Add value.

You know there are other people out there that will not be doing this. They will be trying to sell to their prospects.

Don’t do that.

Put on your helping hat and hold their hand through each step of the process.

If you are not engaged with a prospect in a sales conversation continue to be the person, the business, that stands out and helps. Be the person that puts the needs of others before their own. If you do this you will only be seen in a positive light.

How do we do this?

There are many things you can do. The easiest way to know what each person wants, is to ask.

If they are unsure or need prompting, you can share information with them (relevant to your business/industry or otherwise), share your connections (introduce them to other people) and share your genuine, authentic, desire to help.

Have you helped someone today? Drop a comment below and let us know what you did.

Nurture Your Audience

Yes, build trust and credibility over time with your prospects until they are ready to raise their hand and ask to learn more about your offer.

How?

Content. Regular outreach. Value added information.

At the start of this post I mentioned ‘Content is King’. I don’t necessarily believe it is King. Why? Because content is one piece of the pie (remember the layers?).

With that said, helping people by sharing your expertise, passion(s) and knowledge through content goes a long way to stay front of mind.

A business owner I’m in contact with said they had a binder (physical binder) with print outs of all my relevant e-books, blog posts and other content. It’s there, on their desk. My work is front of mind.

You can do the same. Creating the content, marketing the content, managing the flow of leads and converting the prospects at the appropriate time can all be done through generating at least one ‘primary’ piece of content and delivering regular emails of value.

Simple.

Does this mean that you are contributing to the noise in this information society? Yes. Is that bad? No, not if it’s done with the interests of others at heart. Will it help you be competitive? Yes, because if you’re not talking to your prospects, your competitors are.

That’s it for this time, if you have any questions feel free to add them to the comments below.

If you want to learn more about how to be competitive AND get more clients through content marketing. I created a, free, 40 minute, training video that can be downloaded here. 

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