Peter Geisheker, CEO of The Geisheker Group, is a nationally recognized marketing expert and has had his marketing and business expertise published in Inc. Magazine, Entrepreneur Magazine, and FORTUNE Small Business Magazine just to name a few. This interview sheds some light on B2B inbound marketing and some of the common misconceptions.
What makes (and why is) marketing important? Please explain.
Because there is so much global competition, for marketing to have any chance of being effective it must be very specific and focus on the exact needs of a niche market. Marketing success is based on placing the right message in front of the right market and the right time. A situation that often comes up when I am consulting with clients is that they want their product or service to be all things to all people and to be marketed to “the world.” That is impossible in today's hyper-competitive marketplace, even for the world's largest companies with the world's largest advertising budgets. To have any chance at success you need to focus on a solving the needs of a specific target market and prove how your product/service solves their problem(s) or fulfills their needs better than all competing products/services within that niche market.
Your company offers a broad scope of internet marketing services. What is the big idea that connects your work? What is the major message you want to leave with people?
My marketing firm focuses on creating and optimizing digital marketing programs to generate sales and profits for our clients as quickly as possible. The quickest way to achieve this is with very focused niche marketing. The number one focus needs to be on generating sales and income for a business to achieve profits, particularly with small privately owned businesses. Sales and profits are what create business growth and sustainability. Therefore, creating profitable digital marketing programs is our number one focus.
Why is it so important that someone grasp this big idea? What happens if they don't grasp it?
For a business to be sustainable and win market share, it must generate sales and profitability, and do this as quickly as possible.
What are the major misconceptions that most of your clients fall victim to? How should they think instead?
Misconception: Every person on the planet needs my product/service and I should have a global advertising campaign even though my advertising budget is so small I can barely afford to advertise to the people within a 5 mile radius of my office/store.
Reality: You must focus your marketing program on a small niche market that has the biggest pain problem your product or service solves, and solves better than any competing products or services. If your product or service is not better than competing products or services, there is no viable reason for people do to business with you. You most create some type of innovation that makes your product or service without any question the best solution for the problem you solve. And, you should only advertise to a niche market you can afford to repeatedly advertise to. It is better to advertise to 10,000 people 10 times than 100,000 people one time.
Misconception: For my advertising to work I need to say exactly what my competitors are saying any my website and my advertising should look exactly like that of my competitors.
Reality: For people to take notice of your product/service and company and remember you, your marketing and advertising must be very different than that of your competitors. Stop copying the advertising of your competitors. Don't be a carbon copy of your competitors. People want to buy from the innovators—not from the copycats. So, purposely make your advertising look very different from that of your competitors so that your company stands out and is remembered. If all of your competitors are blue, you need to be red. If all of your competitors are going right, you need to go left.
Misconception: To create a successful marketing campaign and get thousands of customers all I need to do is free social media marketing by posting “buy my stuff” promotions to my social media accounts.
Reality: Social media marketing as a free marketing tool does not work anymore, and it honestly never did work very well. Posting a link to buy your stuff on your Facebook page, or Twitter, or LinkedIn is not going to bring you thousands of raving customers and fans. Social media is now a paid advertising channel. If you want thousands or even millions of people to see your Facebook posts and ads, you need to create an advertising account with Facebook and pay to promote your posts and ads. Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are in business to make money, and they do that by selling advertising. So, stop thinking of social media as a free marketing platform and see it for what it is—a paid advertising channel.
Misconception: All I need to do is hire someone to do Search Engine Optimization for my website and I will get an unlimited amount of free traffic from Google and I will never have to spend any money on advertising.
Reality: Search Engine Optimization is becoming less and less effective at generating large volumes of free traffic because Google is dominating their first page search results with ads and pushing the organic search results farther down the page where they receive significantly fewer clicks. Google makes it money by selling advertising—not from showing free organic search results. When a person conducts a Google search, Google wants that person to click on one of the ads in the search results—not on the organic (free) search results. My prediction is that Google will continue this trend of showing more and more ads in the search results while pushing the organic free search results farther down the page so the organic results are rarely clicked on. I would not doubt that within 2-years there will be no organic page one search results and when a person conducts a Google search, all the results on page one will be ads.
Bonus Tip: Internet browsing is now dominated by mobile phones. Google has stated that more than 50% of all searches are done on mobile phone, and that number will only continue to increase. Therefore, your website and all of your digital advertising must be optimized for being viewed on mobile phones.
Are there any specific must have tools or systems you would suggest people have?
Every company should have a CRM system in place. Salesforce.com is a good one. Every company should also have Google Analytics (which is free) installed on their website so they can see how people are interacting with their website and where there are problems that may be causing people to leave their site without taking some type of action such as contacting you as a lead of buying one of your products.
What big project are you working on now?
The most exciting project I am working on right now is providing digital marketing services for PaperlessProposal.com, which an amazing cloud-based software tool (Saas) for building, tracking, and managing business proposals. They have a wonderful product that their clients rave about. It is such a pleasure marketing a product that is of such high quality and provides such value to its customers.
How can someone get in touch with you?
They can call me at (214) 736-8300, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact me through my website at www.geisheker.com.
People can also download my FREE ebook, “How to build a world-class Internet Marketing Program” by clicking on the following link: http://www.geisheker.com/ebook/