Since I began my journey in marketing and consulting for small businesses, one of the biggest obstacles that I have encountered has been business owners choosing to handle everything themselves. Whether it’s a tight budget (or no budget at all), lack of trust or pride, it’s something that a small business owner needs to overcome. Just because you think that know how to market your business, you’re financially smart, or you have an extensive background in absolutely everything, it doesn’t mean that it is a good idea that you handle everything yourself. As a business owner, do you have time or the energy to put 40 hours of work into your marketing, 40-60 hours into running your business, 20 hours for social media, and another 40 hours for the administrative work? Unless you’re The Rock, chances are you don’t; and if you say that you do, you are lying to yourself. Not only are you lying to yourself, but you are spreading yourself too thin and you are killing yourself trying to handle everything due to you having too much pride. We get it, you’re awesome! You started your business from the ground up. It’s your baby. But that doesn’t mean that you have to let your “baby” run you into the ground.
I recently had a meeting a small business owner that thought she could handle it all herself. In fact, she even looked me in the eye and said she could. She had and “extensive marketing background”, and every idea that I gave her, she “already had it”. When I brought her competitors to her attention, she didn’t even realize that those companies existed, much less, some of the marketing strategies that they were using to be a more successful business than hers. This meeting was about 3-4 months ago, and her marketing continues to remain nonexistent and her business has yet to evolve with the times. It’s her pride in her background that’s going to eventually run her business and herself into the ground.
Some other small business owners that I have had the privilege to talk with have a different approach. When I meet with potential clients, I give out my initial ideas for free. They are there for them to use and to use them however they would like. I do this to not only show I know what I’m talking about and that I put the time and energy into researching their business, but I do this because I know it is something that they won’t understand how to execute properly or have the time for. They get the idea in their head that they can do this. They can run their business, their marketing, and their social media by themselves because I gave them some useful ideas. I’ve been keeping a close on these business since I last spoke with them, and their marketing efforts have all fallen short, are poorly executed, or remain non existent. One of these businesses will only last about a year or so before they’re forced to close their doors.
If you’re a small business owner or you have the intentions of starting your own business one day, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Wouldn’t you rather have a successful business and more time to yourself? Don’t make the same mistakes that these small businesses are making. Hire someone to run your marketing (every business needs marketing), hire someone to run your store, handle shipping, or your finances. When you hire someone to handle your finances or your marketing for example, they are able to put the required amount of time into that project, which in the end, puts you in a better position to make more money.