Known as ‘T’, we met online a while back, she is one of the most helpful, supportive, encouraging and warm peeps I’ve come across…I know her as a woman of many passions (like us all!). She previously worked in pharmaceuticals, and now helps small and solo business owners get smart with their marketing including social media.
I wonder if it was a massive career transition.
Let’s find out…
T! Who are you, explain what you ‘do’ and the biggie what made you decide to go solo after years in the corporate sector?
Well, the transition to helping entrepreneurs grow their business was actually fairly seamless with my sales background. I spent over 20 years in sales and marketing and corporate training within the pharmaceutical industry, and then in 2005 I was laid off.
Yes, as a pharmaceutical representative your territory is essentially your “company”. You have a company message to deliver; however, it’s up to you to dig deep and uncover the needs of your customers, communicate the benefits of your product, and move the relationship forward.
To me, the Internet is a great avenue for entrepreneurs to accomplish the exactly same steps.
You can actually can put yourself on par with larger companies, if you market yourself properly.
What made you choose this business over others?
Online marketing for business started to interest me because of the ability to reach so many people in a very targeted fashion. ‘Traditional’ marketing is done by mail, telephone, cold calling etc. This avenue of marketing yourself takes a lot of time and money.
Also, you’re marketing your service or product to everyone in that zip code, telephone list, etc. A huge majority of those people just won’t be interested in your solution and all that time (a precious commodity) and money are wasted.
Of course, there will be people who do want your offer, it’s about being really smart, working a plan and finding them.
The Internet and social media can help you market your business much more efficiently (even locally). If you have a targeted plan and properly carry it out, you will reach exactly those customers who are looking for your product or service.
Also, without a doubt, the benefits of publishing strategic information (awesome helpful content, like a blog) on the Internet works to market your business for a very long time and builds as time passes. Every entrepreneur should take advantage of that marketing tool.
Okay, here’s the biggie, if you had to start over, what would you do differently?
I always recommend that if you’re planning on starting a business online (or off) that you develop a plan.
Sometimes this takes time because you don’t know the area you would like to focus on; however, it is time well spent.
Every entrepreneur needs to hone in on their skills and what they enjoy.
Once this is accomplished it is a lot easier to form a focused business. You don’t want to waste time and energy chasing a business model that truly doesn’t interest you and doesn’t allow you to grow.
What was the best piece of advice/learning?
Persistence, patience and purpose.
Starting a business whether a brick and mortar or on the Internet takes time to build and grow. Too make people with great marketable skills give up because they think that building an online presence is easy and the clients will come running.
The way to set yourself up for great success is to have a well thought out plan and work your plan. Every entrepreneur needs to set benchmarks for success. Benchmarks will allow you to track your progress, show the success you’ve achieved and keep you motivated.
What drives and motivates you?
Watching as my clients achieve success.
Seeing the growth potential of a business and putting a few calculated strategies in place to make this happen.
Every business model is different and depending on the goals of the business owner, strategies change. Suggested techniques depend on the individual and the business. However, entrepreneurs generally want to know how to grow their business and get the most from their marketing efforts.
What do you wish you knew at the start?
Stay clear of the ‘big empty promises’, especially online.
When you start to research all the possibilities of marketing a business online people generally come across all the “get rich quick” gurus. Listening to all these promises can get a little discouraging because you know if it was that easy, everybody would be raking in the money.
You begin to wonder (and doubt you’re own abilities) if having a legitimate online presence is possible.
My advice to people just starting out is, “Don’t get discouraged by all these empty promises.”
A legitimate online presence is possible, but it takes patience, persistence and perseverance.
Shout Out: You can find Theresa at smartmarketingsmallbusiness, follow her on Twitter @TheresaDelagado or on Google+ http://gplus.to/TheresaDelgado. She also has a free 20 part free email course on youtube The Art of Video Marketing.
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