Aim For The Bullseye, Not The Target

Every business owner wants to make more sales.

And the logical way to do this is to run more ads – to bring more people in the door of your business (the first of the 7 Levers – “Suspects”).

Running more ads makes sense – to an extent.

But Advertising Takes an Investment

While advertising can make you more money (which can be spent to increase your capacity: time and effort) – ads take attention (time and effort) and money in order to be effective.

There are only so many hours in the day to run more ads – only so much attention you can give your ads over other business activities – and only so much money that you can redirect into your advertising budget.

So – at any point in time – there’s a limit to how much advertising you can run.

You might want to achieve 10x your existing sales – but investing 10x more time, effort or money into advertising is a whole different kettle of fish!

(If you’re reached a plateau in your business, you’ll understand this limitation most acutely. You might WANT to be spending more on ads, and investing more effort into sales, but you simply can’t find the capacity to do more.)

And then there’s the problem of FOCUS!

The more ads you run, the more thinly you spread your focus – and the less effective your ads become.

Less effective ads might bring a lot of new Suspects into your business (foot-traffic, phone calls, web-traffic, etc). But those Suspects are likely to cost more per-person; or be less qualified and less likely to buy from you.

It’s like aiming at the target – instead of the bulleye. By widening your focus, you might hit what you’re aiming for more often – but your true effectiveness will suffer.

So – if you’re after more potential customers – “running more ads” is a simple solution. But it’s not always an effective solution.

Getting MORE From LESS

Rather than looking to increase the amount of advertising you’re doing – how can you focus your the time, money and effort you invest into ads and get a far better result?

Let me explain what I mean…

Recently, a student of mine was spending big on marketing – to bring in as many potential customers (Suspects) as possible.

“Brent, we need more people into the top of the funnel!”
“I’m worried… How are we going to get more people into the top of our funnel this month?”
“If we don’t get more people into the top of the funnel now – we’re going to pay for it in 2-3 months time when sales dry up.”

Because of this, they had their thumbs in just about every marketing pie you can imagine…

Magazine ads, paid EDMs, Conferences, Facebook Ads, Social Media Marketing, SEO, Adwords, Referral Partnerships, Joint Ventures, Affiliate Deals, LinkedIn Ads – you name it!

But not all of these marketing channels performed the same.

The Numbers Don’t Lie

Macy’s founder John Wannamaker once famously proclaimed:

“Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.”

These days we can track and measure the effectiveness of ads with greater accuracy than ever before.

And after running the numbers, it was clear that the majority of the time, effort and money this student was investing into advertising was going to waste.

For example – they had over a dozen relationship-driven referral arrangements. And each of these referral relationships took time to foster and nurture. But most had resulted 2-or-fewer sales.

Meanwhile – LinkedIn and Magazine ads were successful at attracting leads – but the financial cost of running these ads meant they were running ads at a loss.

For this particular student, the most valuable ad channel was Facebook. In their market, Facebook leads were cheaper, more abundant, and easier to access than any other channel. And those potential customers were far more likely to buy than leads from any other channel.

What’s more – because their attention had been divided across so many different channels – they’d never invested enough time, effort or money into Facebook ads to reap the full potential benefit of this one channel.

“Put It All On Black!”

It’s a scary leap for a business owner to cut off all other advertising channels – and focus on their most effective source of leads.

It feels RISKY…

…Like putting your whole payroll on black at the Roulette wheel.

But the opposite is true.

It’s far more risky to WASTE your time and advertising budget – week-after-week, month-after-month – on ineffective marketing channels.

You can always go back to these less-effective channels later. (In fact, once you’ve optimized your sales process, and tapped-out the full potential of your MOST effective advertising channels – you’ll definitely want to return to some of these other channels. At that point, those less effective channels will be far more profitable than they’ve ever been for you!)

Instead of being risky – taking a coldly fact-driven approach to your marketing is about being smart and calculated.

And for making this leap, this student was vindicated.

The Benefit of Focus…

By taking the leap, this student’s ad costs dropped substantially. Instantly, their cost-per-lead dropped to around 1/3rd as much – which meant they could invest the same amount of money and get 3x as many leads.

In fact, they’ve just finished a nation-wide sales event tour, and it’s been the most well-attended series of events they’ve held in a long time – thanks in large part to the huge number of leads they attracted a few months ago.

Note: This is just a taste of the kind of information you’ll be receiving inside the white paper: 7 Levers and the Growth Paradox: Doubling Business Profit Through Seven Simple Marketing Tweaks.

If you don’t have the whitepaper yet, you’re missing out.

Get on board and join the others who have already begun growing their businesses, and improving their profits.

Brent Hodgson

Pete Williams is an entrepreneur, author, and marketer from Melbourne, Australia.

Before being honored “Australia’s Richard Branson” in media publications all over the continent, Pete was just 21 years old when he sold Australia’s version of Yankee Stadium, The Melbourne Cricket Ground For Under $500! Don’t believe it? You will! Check out the story in the FAQ section (it really is our most asked question).

Since then, he’s done some cool stuff like write the international smash hit ‘How to Turn Your Million-Dollar Idea Into a Reality’ (+ the upcoming ‘It’s Not About the Product‘) and he’s created a bunch of companies including Infiniti Telecommunications, On Hold Advertising, Simply Headsets and Preneur Group.

Lots of other people think he’s pretty good too! He’s been announced as the Global Runner-Up in the JCI Creative Young Entrepreneur Awards for 2009, the Southern Region Finalist in the Ernst & Young 2010 Entrepreneur of the Year, and a member of SmartCompany’s Top 30 Under 30.

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