Doesn’t that sound heavenly? Slow marketing? I know, marketing can be such a pain and necessary evil for many. You feel passionate about your business (idea), but the idea that you then have to start shouting to the world about it, fills you with dread. Why can’t people just magically find you and start buying? If only it was so simple. But it does not have to be complicated either. Today I want to talk to you about slow marketing, what this means, and how you can get good results and clients by doing marketing in a way that keeps you sane and not stressed out.
Slow marketing, in my opinion, is the future way of marketing, and one that is actually sustainable.
The old way of marketing is fast and furious. A throwaway kind of method. Pushy adverts, sleazy sales tactics, gloss and glamour, expensive billboards, and treating customers like they are stupid and can me manipulated into buying. It feels yuck, and this is exactly the reason why many creatives hate the whole idea of marketing in the first place. The constant need to post, making yourself visible, pushing your products. It wears you out and feels pretty overwhelming. On top of that, it hardly ever leads to brilliant results. But it does not have to be like that. You can market your business in a way that feels good, authentic, and natural.
Slow marketing is authentic, honest, respectful, intelligent, and simple. It uses collaboration, has systems in place, and it follows your rhythm, and what works for you. No constant running a race, but more of a steady, consistent pace. Slow, not in a sluggish or lazy way, but conscious and purposeful.
Slow marketing is about trusting yourself, and feeling confident about your business and offer. Being in control, and choosing strategically and tactically. What do you need to change to start doing slow marketing? First of all: you need a well built business, and one that is simple and organised. Strong in the foundations and simple in the day-to-day running. Sustainable in the long run. You need your systems in place.
Have your systems in place
What are those systems you need to have in place? First of all: you need clarity about what it is that you are doing, for who, and why. Your offer, your niche, the target audience and your message are the absolute solid building bricks you have to get clear. From there on, everything gets easier, flows better and falls into place – and then your marketing will stop being be so frantic and random. No more chaos and overwhelm. You know what you are doing, and you are able to make wise marketing decisions. Not spreading yourself to thin, choosing what to post based on your solid foundation.
You can’t build on pillars made of paper. You need solid bricks and mortar to create your business. Niche, audience, offer, message. These four pillars have to be absolutely solid. Otherwise you’ll be building a house made out of cards.
As a creative business coach, I help entrepreneurs all the time with their foundations and building bricks. We dive deep into their core values, why they do what they do, who they want to help, and what their offer is. We craft a crystal clear message, and after that it gets a lot easier to create content that actually works and attracts the right clients. And also to understand how to best market yourself without being on every single social media platform there is available. Where else to find clients. And how to resonate with them. Those steps are absolutely essential in building a solid but simple business, and are a standard part in my coaching programmes.
Don’t be scared of the competition
“Check out the competition”, they say in business and marketing courses, as if they are the enemy. But your competition is never 100% your competition, they will all be doing something slightly different, albeit in the same field. It is a big pond and there is space for everyone. So the key is to not be afraid, but to know your strengths and trust yourself. The more you believe in yourself, your qualities, and the beautiful value that you offer to people, the calmer you feel. Clients will see this and feel more attracted by someone who looks calm and in control, and fully confident about their business.
So don’t be hostile towards any competitors, or scared that they will ‘steal’ your clients. Instead, get to know them, and build up a good relationship with them. Go to networking events, swap numbers, follow – and support! – each other on social media. Be open and transparent, and invite others to work with you, in order to both benefit. Knowing and respecting each other means that you will both refer clients and customers to one another if you feel they are a good fit for your competitor. It also means that you have a strong and supportive network that you can lean on, utilise, and work with. Make an appearance, introduce yourself, and watch the ripple effect.
Simplify your business
Many of my clients find it hard to prioritise and plan their week in order to feel calmer and on top of things. Many creatives go after the next shiny thing that catches their attention, without finishing what they were working on. That is also the beauty of being creative, to be spontaneous, but it doesn’t always help to get rid of the anxiety around building a successful business. So having a good desk planner is a great idea, for a start, to have an overview of your most important tasks that week. Put up a white board to gather your big ideas and plans for the longer term. And keep a journal, to jot down sudden ideas and thoughts that you don’t want to forget but which don’t need your immediate attention.
Overwhelm and anxiety are two of the most common emotions I see in my clients. Too many ideas, not knowing where to start, a very long to-do-list, feeling paralysed, and randomly posting on all platforms, but without a plan – and definitely without consistency.
To simplify your business, here’s another golden tip: hire help. If you hate writing blog posts but you understand the power of content marketing and SEO, then outsource this part of your marketing. It costs less than you think to have someone write a few blog posts a month for you and it can mean a huge improvement to your website traffic, so eventually it will pay for itself. If you hate doing the admin, need help in managing your social media, or organising a launch, get a VA. You can’t do everything yourself, and it will free up so much of your time and energy if you hire a freelancer to support you. Simplify your life and business! Life is too short to feel exhausted all the time.
Once you have your systems in place: your building blocks, your foundation, your weekly planning, and your careful and limited selection of marketing tools and social platforms…slow marketing is a breeze. Confident and targeted messages, on point posts, and a regular email to your audience…these all help you build your strong brand and attract a consistent stream of leads. You are just being yourself, sharing your message in a clear and consistent manner, and feeling good about it. Before slow marketing is a fact, you do have to put a little bit of work in, but I promise you: it will be worth it. And if you need help with that, you know where I am.