There are brands and products that change the world everyday, but some of them may receive more attention than others. It’s easy to point to something like Apple’s iPod and iTunes service, and see how they changed the way we consume and create music, movies, TV, and more. The iPod evolved into the iPad and the game changing iPhone. The product itself isn’t what changed the world though. It was their story.
Coca-Cola is exceptional at telling their story. They understand something that resonates much deeper with people than just a clever ad. Their strength is that they create experiences for people, which remind us of why we love drinking Coca-Cola in the first place. See the video below of how they served ice cold Coca-Cola along with notes of appreciation to migrant workers in Singapore (Read about it via Fast Company). The company placed the emphasis on humans, thus creating a human to human experience between consumers and the company.
Why Small Businesses Have the Biggest Opportunity
Many entrepreneurs are driven by money, and that’s a great thing that should be celebrated. However, money is not the only thing that matters in life, and I believe that it will often lead to a lack of focus on what truly matters when building a company: People.
The one thing that will help your business grow, give you reason to wake up excited about going to work, or both, is the people that your business touches everyday. It’s time for small businesses to think BIG. I’m not talking about expanding into new cities, or going international. If that’s your dream, then good for you. Make it happen. When I say, “Think BIG”, I’m referring to the impact that your business makes everyday in your local community, with your employees, your family, and the people outside of your community that hear about your story. It takes empathy, from the top down, to create a business that changes the world (even if that world is population 2,000 people.)
When we think about marketing our businesses, we often think about turning over sales as fast and as economically as possible. We’re constantly looking for that glorious ROI. The small business that’s ready to think big, is looking for something different. Their biggest opportunity is the experiences that they create everyday in their home, their schools, and with their staff and customers at their place of business.
If you’re a small business owner, I truly believe that you have the greatest opportunity here. You have so many spheres to interact with and pull together on a daily basis. It’s time to create new stories, share them, edify your neighbors when they’re in need, and raise awareness around your community. The Internet has gotten a bad reputation recently for its ability to create a space of selfishness. I think that the true power of the Internet is how we can use it to amplify the message of others, effectively edifying and refreshing ourselves, our families, and our community.
The true marketing opportunity for you, as a small business owner, is how you can use your digital footprint to share stories about your community, people that you work with, or why your service or product brings a smile to the face of people. There is greatness that lies within every good business, which is just waiting to be tapped into and shared. The Internet provides you with an amazing opportunity to share that message, even if it’s with just your town via your businesses’ blog. Even if you haven’t incorporated a digital marketing strategy into your business, the good news is that great businesses are already being talked about. There’s a conversation, a photo shared, or a Vine video published filled with smiling faces and rave reviews. You can start by joining the conversation and showing your gratitude to the folks who are already talking about your business.
Putting Your Mission to Good Use for Your Business and Your Community
The world is starving for loving, human experiences. Even though you’re creating a company, you and your people are the glue that holds that brand together. It comes down to having a group of humans that truly believe in what you believe, and live out that message to your customer base and local community. This means that the vision for you company must be spread, beginning with you and your management team.
Marketing your company doesn’t just have to be about creating an FAQ section on your website that will rank well in Google. That’s a small piece to the puzzle of digital marketing. The opportunities don’t begin and end with search engine rankings when it comes to creating a fantastic web presence. Whether you are tackling your company’s marketing by yourself, or you work with an agency, it’s essential that you do not hold back from creating and sharing human to human experiences that you, your staff, and your company create everyday. Tell your story, and let people know why you love providing them with your services or product. Make them believers in what you do by sharing with them why you do it first. I think that, for the most successful companies, it will point to people, and the people who you hire and serve are everything.
Photo via Northfoot Adventures on Flickr