When in Doubt, Focus on the Product

Posted by: Today's Tip Contributor on August 10, 2011

I used to obsess over ad success and SEO conversion rates. I spent my time looking at advertising and marketing from every angle I could think of. When I felt the results were off, I’d go back and rehash those reports in search of that elusive maximum return for my small advertising budget. Then I spoke with a mentor who suggested I use the time that I was spending trying to optimize each advertising nickel to instead polish and refine my company’s products and services and let them sell themselves. As I put his advice into practice, not only did I find he was right, I found that our goods could sell themselves better than any advertisement ever did.

No amount of advertising helps a poor product. Say you own a restaurant and sink a ton of money into advertising for the grand opening. So many people show up that you can’t seat them all. The problem is that you neglected to hire a good staff. The food is nothing special. Your expensive experiment failed to build a customer base.

Focus your energy on the product or service. Instead of advertising, hire a top chef, use the finest ingredients, and demand quick and kind service from your wait staff.

A good product advertises itself. If you, the concerned restaurateur, give your patrons the best service, most-flavorful food, and competitive prices, advertising expenses will fall. All of the sudden you’ll see regulars. And friends of regulars. Before you know it, you’ve built a loyal word-of-mouth network on your superior product.

Always remember: No matter where you’re running your ads, they’ll be gone eventually. A reputation has a way of staying with a product, and a sterling reputation for your product is worth far more than the money you didn’t spend advertising it.

Jim Belosic
Founder
ShortStack
Reno, Nev.

Post a comment

 

About

Want to improve the way you run your business? Entrepreneurs, academics, and consultants from diverse industries offer practical advice on a variety of topics each business day.

To submit a tip for consideration, first check our archive of previous tips to make sure you're not repeating a tip someone has already contributed. Then send the tip to Small Business channel contributor Michelle Dammon Loyalka. Because of the volume of material she receives, she may not respond to each individual.

BW Mall - Sponsored Links

Buy a link now!