When it comes to small business marketing, there are plenty of people sharper than us (we’re just lowly business plan experts). That’s why we’re a fan of smart marketing blogs like Duct Tape Marketing blog, which typically offer up excellent advice for small businesses. So we were particularly interested when we noted yesterday that the site posted “Snackfest 2009″—brief, forward-looking tips for marketing in the new year from some of the biggest names in the business marketing. Frankly, we were slightly disappointed. Maybe it’s because the list falls under the category of new year blog posts, which we’re not a fan of, or maybe it’s just that marketing experts have sipped a little too much of their own Kool-Aid, but the thoughts many of these experts—and they are experts, like Seth Godin and Ann Handley—share are downright worthless. For instance, Dan Pink, the author of Whole New Mind tells us:
“Think boldly and push frontiers while the big guys run scared and retreat to safety.”
Um, okay. From our standpoint, that’s about as useful as telling a small business owner to “think outside the box” when it comes to advertising and marketing. Translation: it’s not. And then there’s this little gem from Scott Allen, the author of the Virtual Handshake:
“Get funded. Cap gain tax cuts and revitalization of the SBA = available equity and credit $$$$. It’s time to make a big move that needs big capital.”
If only getting funded was as simple as wanting it.
Now all that being said, let us reiterate, we like the Duct Tape Marketing blog. We really do. And in fairness, these info bytes provided by experts did have to be under 130 words (Twitter size!), and there are still a few semi-useful tips among them. For instance, Laura Lake who writes the About.com marketing section offers this up:
“Make a major shift into social marketing and online relationship building. It’s no longer an option, it’s vital.”
And Chris Baggott, the CEO of Compendium Blogware says: “Take advantage of their inherent advantage in local SEO. Targeted business blogging empowers small business to control their own destiny and win the online battle.”
Still, we have to ask: what is it with marketers and their cute little sound bites? They make our head hurt.