If you want to understand how to market a garage business, hopefully I can help you bypass a big learning curve…

Do you ever have moments when something suddenly becomes blindingly apparent – an ‘aha’ moment?

After many years of building my own small design business, whilst also providing marketing services to help other small businesses, I found it increasingly frustrating at the lack of information and help available that was specific to building a small business.

Plenty of people had written books on business and marketing, and there were loads of courses available on the subject too.

But all this knowledge and information seemed to be aimed at big corporates, or blue chip and global organisations.

After starting my design agency way back in 1985 at the tender age of just 23, I constantly pursued a path of marketing learning, so I could apply it to giving the best possible service to my clients.

Me circa 1988 & 1991 – in my studio – don’t mention the hair!

I read books, did courses – even embarked on an MBA course – but there was always a niggling doubt in the back of my mind about applying what I knew to the ‘small business’…

It was almost twenty five years before I had my own ‘aha’ moment regarding marketing and small business.

Why so long? Well, this moment coincided with a personal decision to focus my own business on working with smaller businesses.

For so long I’d been chasing ‘big’ business with varying degrees of success, but I wasn’t getting the sort of work I wanted – the big agencies got that and we picked up what was left.

I could have carried on along that path quite successfully, but I really enjoyed working with entrepreneurs, start-ups and smaller businesses in general.

It was at that time that one day a client said to me “I really need someone who specialises in helping small businesses with their marketing?”

This was in 2009. By that time I was busy building my second design agency.

This was my ‘aha’ moment. From then on, I made a decision to dedicate myself to exactly what this client wanted – a service that existed to help the smaller business person.

Thankfully, by this time, the internet had been invented and provided a thriving base for my further research and more knowledge.

In order to develop a new set of services specifically for smaller businesses, I went online to see who was doing what – it was there that I stumbled on John Jantsch and Duct Tape Marketing.

John ‘spoke to the small business’. He answered all the frustrations that I had in my mind about marketing small businesses. At last I’d found someone who I could relate to and who related to what I was trying to do – another ‘aha’ moment.

Long story – short, I joined up with John and Duct Tape Marketing as a licensed provider of their system in the UK and started providing both consultancy and implementation services.

Things have moved on and changed since those days – as life has a tendency to do. But I learned a lot from John and Duct Tape and still place a lot of value on what they do, say, prescribe and provide.

But, the essence of this story is ‘I wish I’d know that when I started in business’. I know they say things do come to he who waits, but it can be very frustrating in the meantime.

If you’re looking to bypass a long learning curve, download my ‘Get more customers’ guide.

As you read through it hopefully you’ll find many of your own ‘aha’ moments!


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