I bumped into local businesswoman Nicola Phillips a few days ago and enjoyed listening to her chatting animatedly about the expansion of her legal business, how after working hard, nose pressed to the grindstone for many months, she was now reaping the benefits of her dedication and expertise with a growing and successful business, even moving into new premises to accommodate her new team. I felt inspired after meeting her.
This got me thinking about business owners and how some react to the ubiquitous question “how’s business at the moment?” You can bet your bottom dollar that some will respond like Nicola, brimming with enthusiasm about their business, whilst others will deliver a doom and gloom prognosis leaving you feeling drained. Now I’m not saying that if you’re going through hard times with your business, that you should not find an outlet for your despair or discontent. But it’s not always a good idea to talk your business down when out and about. If you can remain upbeat and focus on the positives; what you can offer customers by way of your excellent and attentive service you’re much more likely to attract customers and influencers. If you’ve fallen into the trap of talking negatively about your business without thinking through the impact of what you’re saying on the person listening to you, you’re making it challenging for them to recommend you with ease and confidence.
If you’re a regular reader of my column you’ll know that I recently launched a new book, the culmination of 12 months writing obsessively, hours on end holed up in the little log cabin in my garden. I celebrated the launch at Roffey Park with 135 guests (including the fabulous team from the District Post with publisher Matthew Wheeler himself in attendance!) It occurred to me on the evening of my launch, looking around the room just how many fantastic businesses and talented entrepreneurs there are in the Horsham District and beyond. Every person I spoke to was enthusiastic about their business and was enjoying the vibrant and animated networking with other business owners. This got me thinking about how it can be a very ‘British thing’ not to talk about your successes too much lest you come across as boastful or arrogant. Nonsense! If you’re enjoying success with your business, if you’ve won awards or accreditations, talk about it. Blog about your achievements. Tweet about your successes. Send your good news to the local papers and magazines. Include your good news in your networking presentations. When people see, read and hear that you’re doing well, they’ll talk about you and spread the positive word. This in turn will attract people that want to work with you, that want to do business with you simply because they’re enthused by your success, confident you’ll be a safe pair of hands. So, ignore those who say you’re punching above your weight or you’ve become big headed. They’re not the ones you want to do business with. Be proud of your achievements not forgetting of course to celebrate and be inspired by the achievements of others too.
And yes, I am celebrating this month. My new book has recently been reviewed by media giant CityAM newspaper and was rated as ‘excellent’, culminating in a lovely interview that was read by over 200,000 Londoners. It resulted in my book reaching the number one spot for marketing books on Amazon. It was also awarded the hotly contested non-fiction book of the month by The BookBag review site. It’s early days however. There’s a world of difference between being at the top of the charts for one day and top several months later! But the early signs are encouraging and I am grateful to my readers for their positive feedback and lovely reviews. My message this month? Celebrate your successes and let the world know about them. You didn’t come into business to be despondent and downbeat did you?
About Dee Blick
Dee is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing with 30 years marketing experience. You can find out more about her latest award winning book, The 15 Essential Marketing Masterclasses for Your Small Business on www.amazon.co.uk and by visiting her website www.themarketinggym.org Send her an email firstname.lastname@example.org or call her on 07845 439332.