Are You Getting High On Your Own Supply?

I took a trip to Colorado last week and found myself in a hotel room without my usual DVR to satisfy any TV urges I had.  So, I begin to flip the channels and came across the movie, Scarface.  For those who haven’t seen it, it covers a guy who breaks into the cocaine business and takes over large chunks of it.  One of the pieces of advice given to him, was “Don’t get high on your own supply.”

This advice would seem to make sense to someone in the illegal drug trade.   When I thought about it some more, though, I realized that too many small business owners don’t heed that advice and are certainly getting “high on their own supply.”

No, I am not talking about taking drugs.

Instead, I am talking about not taking a realistic view of what is really going on when it comes to their business, their industry, and the people or organizations that need their product or service.  In a sense, they are “drunk” or “high” and it is costing them dearly.

One big example is the “People love supporting local business and they will pay more to use someone locally” delusion.  Yes, small business owners and some consumers actually will do that.  Most people, however, will agree with you with their words, but will disagree with you when it comes to them opening their wallets.

People will pay more when they are getting a great value for their money.  If they don’t feel that way, they are going to go wherever their money will get the best deal.  If that means not buying locally, then so be it, that’s what they are going to do.  And no matter how much a small business owner may not like that, it is reality.

So, isn’t it better for a business to actually accept that reality and work to deliver value, both locally, and if it can, nationally?

The more a small business can do that, the better it will be able to do small business marketing.  This is because once you know what your Unique Value is, you can then tailor your marketing approach to get more of the most valuable types of clients or customers no matter who or where the competition is.

For example, let us say that I am on vacation in Colorado and have to eat out since I don’t have a kitchen when I am traveling.  There are dozens of restaurants around my hotel and many of them are chains.  I know that I can go into any one of them and get a meal that is probably going to taste almost the same as it would in Florida, where I live.  The risk for a bad and unexpected experience is low.

But I am on vacation, and don’t want the usual.  I like Italian food so an Italian Restaurant that I see appeals to me.  It looks like many of the Italian Restaurants where I grew up in New York.  I get on my phone, look at some reviews about it and decide it might be worth investigating.  The problem is, the prices are about 20% higher than I could get at a comparable chain.  Plus, I might take my girlfriend to a place that fails to deliver.  And that isn’t good for me.

Fortunately, for the restaurant, when I go to the website I see that they have an offer that I can’t refuse: “A free bottle of wine with two entrees.  And, if you are not 100% satisfied with your meal, we will refund the money.  No questions asked.  First-time diners.”

Now, this local business gets my business.  It had to give a little away but took all of the risk away from me. And it took a piece of business away from the Italian restaurant chain that I know.  Imagine what that business could do if it marketed this offer better, which is where someone like me comes into the picture.  The beauty for me, is I don’t need to live there to help him.  He just cares that I can help him.

If you are frustrated with your business and aren’t getting enough clients or revenue, consider contacting me for a FREE consultation.