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From KC Truby Lonesome Cowboy Publishing Inc. 301 Thelma Drive #426, Casper WY 82609 (760) 207-6385

Why Branding in your small Business is a total waste of time and money

By on July 14, 2014
small business branding

Why branding in your small business is a total waste of time and money

 Well I’m about to make a lot of people in the marketing consulting business mad, but here goes anyway. In my opinion marketing people pushing the concept of ‘branding’ are trying to get paid without having to be held accountable for results. If you pay me to build your ‘brand’ I don’t have to prove any sales results. What a racket.

 

In small business the brand is YOU. Three of the biggest wastes of time and money in small business marketing strategy are worrying about your brand, logo and the color of your letterhead.

 

Until you have 100 clients or 25 employees – your company brand is what YOU say and do.   Everything people think about your company has YOU in the sentence.   Don’t waste time and resources trying to position the firm.

 

If you’re going to build a business, you MUST put your limited resources into what counts. Selling happy clients buying in abundance.

 

Your job boils down to a few simple steps right now

  1. Find a client
  2. Find an employee to do the work for that client
  3. Make sure that client is happy
  4. Rinse and repeat

 

Here is why I wanted to let you know about this…

 

I’m on a blog on LinkedIn this weekend and a woman is talking about her web site for Art Recovery – a new and upcoming field she explains.   She goes on to say her 2 year old web site is not working so she wanted to know what branding or establishment of expertise might make the difference.

 

Of course she got a lot of advice in moments about positioning, awareness in the market and branding your business.   Obviously written by people who order sparkling water with their salad at lunch time. I figure it’s easy to have brilliant discussions when you’re spending someone else’s money.

 

So I sent her this reply and of course she hated it.

 

“Mary – you may be hearing the answer you WANT on this forum but it is far from the perfect answer. When starting a small business (unless you plan on 100% of your sales coming on line with no interaction with clients)   your first job is to get on the phone or in front of a prospect. Don’t waste your precious resources or time doing anything else – including hiring consultants. Talk to buyers.

 

Build a simple web site (there’s plenty of time for complicated later)   Simple means 5 pages max. Your main point and main offer on the front page. 3 pages of content on why YOU are qualified and one page for contacting you. Hire it done in Word Press for around $250. Then pay $250 for ad copy. Once you see some one else’s ad copy, you can always tweak it a little.

 

Focus all energy toward getting the prospect to contact you (by phone or email) so offer free consultation, e-books, classes, CD’s, white page reports, video on line, free lunch and learn, telephone-seminars etc. I’ll bet there must be over 100 ways to get the interaction started with potential clients.

 

Once you get the prospect on the phone or in person ask and take notes about the 3 things that worry them – not logical but emotional pains.   You must do this with at least 10 people to get a clear picture of WHY a prospect is interested in solving the problem you are offering solutions to.  From the buyers point of view, not yours.

 

Those pains are the basis of your future marketing.   Now your ‘expertise’ will match the need of the client. Now you can start worrying about ‘branding’ and all the other feel good but no cash flow ideas you will hear.

 

If you skip this 10 person 3 questions each step and go forward on feel good branding or positioning yourself – everything you say on your site and in your communication will be what’s important to YOU.   That is a short path to a low place.

 

Since you are moving into a ‘growing’ field – that means you are a pioneer. Many pioneers died with arrows in their butt – so spend a lot of time tracking the results of others in your field and their on line presence.   I call my self the lonesome cowboy – one of the last rugged individualist business man / sales man in America – for years I told people to forge out and do it the way they know in their heart – I was wrong.   Find out what works for others, do that. Do it simple at first, and do it a little better each quarter after you have simple down flat. You’ll save yourself tens of thousands of dollars and you won’t waste precious time on tasks that do not drive cash to the bottom line.

 

About KC Truby

From their ranch in Wyoming, KC and his wife Linnea have bought or started 21 companies as a side line to their accounting business leading them into M&A as a full time business in 2012. These companies are located all over the Western Rocky Mountains, London and India. Since 1969 through their accounting and training companies, KC has taught 18,000 business owners how to improve cash flow and find more customers by installing standardized systems in their small business. Since 1989 KC has presented over 1,000 seminars and training classes to the small business owner.

2 Comments

  1. Robin Gronsky

    July 15, 2014 at 7:19 pm

    Yes! I don’t understand this obsession on branding. No one buys a product or service based on how pretty the logo is. Large companies can afford to waste money on branding. As a small business owner, I think it’s secondary to driving clients to me. If someone can show me how branding does that, I may pay attention.

    • KC Truby

      July 17, 2014 at 4:16 am

      Small business owners and professionals would be far better served if they focused on generating referrals or public exposure like speaking at group meetings of people that fit your client profile.

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