Digital marketing success through niching and a customer-first approach, with Grant Leboff.

Business going well but could be doing better? Then you should change your approach to digital marketing! Sales & marketing expert Grant Leboff makes the case for niching down for greater rewards, why a multimedia marketing approach pays off, and how to stand out in your market.

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What You’ll Hear

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In this podcast, I speak to Grant Leboff. Grant is one of the UK’s leading Sales and Marketing experts. His fourth book, ‘Digital Selling’, debuted at #1 on the Amazon charts, and his fifth, ‘The Myths of Marketing’ was published last year.  

A thought leader in his field, Grant’s main focus is to address the massive changes that are taking place in a world that is constantly being introduced to new technologies and an evolving World Wide Web. 

He continually challenges sales and marketing conventions that become accepted wisdom, but don’t necessarily deliver results. He is a highly sought-after consultant, mentor and speaker, and constantly makes presentations at conferences and events all over the world. 

Grant is also a regular contributor to many business magazines and newspapers. Amongst others, he has been featured in the Daily Telegraph, The Independent, The Financial Times, The Daily Mirror and The Sun. He has appeared on BBC Radio on numerous occasions as well as being featured on a significant number of US radio networks.

About Grant and his Background

Grant’s background is in sales and marketing, and he had several roles at PLCs before starting his own direct marketing company. Since selling that, he’s worked as a speaker, consultant and writer.

Why Grant Became an Entrepreneur

Grant says he never set out to be an entrepreneur, he just followed his gut. He explains that he became increasingly frustrated in his last employed role when the board and management prevented him from implementing changes that he thought would be good for the marketing department. 

In the end, Grant says, he decided to set up as an agency offering the services his bosses rejected to other businesses. Becoming an entrepreneur happened organically, coming about because of the limitations put on him by his employer. He wanted to follow his own instincts. 

How Business Owners can Stand out

Grant says: “Standing out from the competition starts with one important thing that businesses often overlook – segmenting and targeting your market properly. There’s a lot of confusion around the two, but there’s an easy way to think about it. 

“Segmentation is how you cut the cake, and then targeting is deciding which slices you’re going to eat. You need to decide which slices to eat, because you can’t be all things to all people. You’ll end up vanilla and you won’t stand out.” 

You need to understand the slices (target audiences) and stay in a narrow market in order to succeed – so long as the market is big enough to sustain your business. You can tailor your products and services to be appropriate to that marketplace, and it’s easier to build a brand and awareness in a smaller pond. 

Tips for Digital Marketing ROI

Grant has a leftfield answer to how to get ROI from digital marketing. Firstly – go multi-channel, not just digital. Every single piece of data you ever look at will tell you you’ll get more bang for your buck if you do this. 

Secondly, people forget to build brand and brand awareness, and this is key. When you look at your bottom of the funnel activation, you’ll be more successful and have more sales if you’ve worked harder at the top of the funnel. 

Grant gives an example: If you’re on Facebook and you get a popup ad for “Smith and Jones Computers”, you’re far less likely to click on it than if it was an ad for Apple or Microsoft, because they’re brands that you’re familiar with. Once there’s brand trust, you’ll be more likely to click on the ad. 

But if you’re not Apple or Microsoft and only have a tiny budget, what do you do then? You go back to segmentation and targeting, because you’d have to have a huge budget to advertise across an entire marketplace. 

If you’ve identified your slice of the market, though, which could be a very narrow vertical market or geographical location, it’s easier to build a brand in that sector and get known. If you do it properly, your digital sales activation will be much more successful. 

Other Types of Marketing

There are all kinds of other marketing techniques to use alongside digital, although Grant points out that these will vary from business to business. These could include direct mail, sponsoring an event or an award, a magazine, TV or radio ad.

Only relying on your online media is not an optimum strategy. A multi-channel strategy is more effective, and it’s possible to do this well with a very small budget. If you can spread your net away from JUST online you’ll get better results. 

How to Overcome the Fear of Sales

A lot of entrepreneurs get into business and they’re great at what they do, but they dread the sales part. Grant’s most salient piece of advice, he says, is ‘don’t worry about yourself; worry about the customer.’ 

Most people in a sales situation worry about themselves: if they’re selling the benefits properly, if they’re coming across well and if they’re closing. Then it becomes all about them. 

Instead, says Grant, focus on the customer and their challenges and problems. What’s going on in their lives and how can you help and add value? Once you start to do that, it’ll come across to the customer. 

Being genuine and being helpful means the sales stuff dissipates. You know your stuff, you’re the expert and you’re great at what you do, so explain that and pay attention to what the customer needs.

How Grant has Dealt with Challenges

Grant admits it’s never easy to deal with challenges, but he has a couple of things that help. The first is that things are never as good or bad as you think they are. Celebrate wins when you’re on a high, even though it might not be that good.

That’s the same, of course, for the bad things, and it’s about maintaining an inner confidence and belief. As an entrepreneur, you’ve always got to know why you do what you do. 

Understand what it is you enjoy about what you do, and make sure you focus on that. when the bad times hit, focusing on the things you enjoy makes it easier to come through the other side. 

Grant’s other tip is to find a friend to talk to, preferably another business owner. He says getting a mentor was the smartest thing he ever did. Whenever he was unsure about what to do, having someone to ask for advice and bounce ideas off is absolutely invaluable. 

Don’t try to do it all yourself. Find a couple of people you trust and who have experience and are further ahead than you, and use them as a sounding board. It’s a majorly important thing. 

Time Management Tips

Time management is one of the biggest hurdles people face, because if you can’t manage your time you’ve got all sorts of challenges. Grant shared what he does to manage his time more effectively. 

He focuses on what he’s doing at the time. If he’s being interviewed for a podcast, he concentrates on that and nothing else. He doesn’t look at his emails or take phone calls. If you need an hour and a half to write a blog, turn everything off and just work on that until it’s done. 

Grant is a morning person, so he tries to start his interactive work day until as late as possible – he waits until at least 11am for meetings and calls. Then, he uses the first couple of hours of his day to deal with important tasks – writing proposals, blogs and other things. 

When you’re fresh first thing in the morning, that’s the best time to get on with those tasks. You know they’ll definitely get done, and then you have the rest of the day for other things. You feel good because you’ve achieved something straight away, which is better than getting to the end of the day with things left on the to-do list and feeling frustrated. 

Start the day by focusing on something important that needs to be ticked off, because doing so means it’s already been a good day before the day has even got underway. 

Why Some Businesses are More Successful Than Others

Grant says there are several challenges for business owners, the main one being not knowing who your audience is. You may have the best idea in the world and brilliant at what you do, but if you don’t focus on an audience, you won’t win customers and succeed on a commercial basis. 

Focus is also key – you have to be able to get things done and complete tasks, especially in the early days when you have nobody else to help. Finally, understand that marketing is being able to see the world through your customers’ eyes. It’s called marketing because it’s about the marketplace. 

Many entrepreneurs are so passionate and focused on what they do, which they often do really well, that they forget about the customer. If you create a product or service that people don’t want or can’t afford, it doesn’t matter how good you are at what you do. 

If you lose sight of the marketplace element and stop seeing things as the customer does, then there is no business. The purpose of business is to create a customer, as Peter Drucker said in the 1950s. Entrepreneurs must focus on that. 

The Most Interesting Place Grant has Been

Grant has been fortunate to be able to travel all over the world through his business, and it’s surprising that so many places are similar to others. When you go to a place that is culturally different, and different on the eye, that’s really interesting. 

Two places that Grant found fascinating and so different from the West, are Tokyo and India. Grant says working in Japan was amazing and somewhere he always enjoys. India also gave him some new experiences, which he really liked. Visit www.stickymarketing.com for videos with tips and ideas from Grant. Search Grant Leboff on Twitter and LinkedIn too.

Business going well but could be doing better? Then you should change your approach to digital marketing! Sales & marketing expert Grant Leboff makes the case for niching down for greater rewards, why a multimedia marketing approach pays off, and how to stand out in your market.

This content was originally published here.

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