The word "technology" is in quotes because I want to expand your view of how it’s used. Businesses that get talked about do something different from other businesses. Being different is such an essential ingredient in marketing a small business.
You must also work, however, to bring that difference to the forefront of all marketing communications by developing tools that promote your point of view and your core difference.
It’s not enough to say that you’re different; you’ve also got to develop tools and materials that illustrate that difference. So in that vein, your technology could be a seven-step approach, a discovery audit, an actual technological product advancement, a coaching process, a set of tools, or proprietary software.
The key is to capture what it is that you do that’s unique and valuable and expand it into something that you can build a great deal of your educational content platform around. Think of this as your organization’s signature tool.
When I created the Duct Tape Marketing System, I knew that one of my objectives was to make marketing simple while also getting business owners to understand the essential elements.
We boiled our entire process down to seven steps and created a white paper and presentation called “The Seven Steps to Small Business Marketing Success.” That title has been downloaded hundreds of thousands of times, been presented to tens of thousands of small business owners in person live and online, and acts as the central lead-conversion presentation for Duct Tape Marketing Consultants around the world.
The seven steps comprise our killer "technology" and are central to our core message of simple, effective, and affordable small-business marketing. Each of the steps of course can be expanded to fill up the space of a stand-alone white paper or presentation as well, making this technology a dynamic and flexible source of content that is a significant element of our brand.
Every business needs to create or capture their simple strategy, differentiator or process that allows them to communicate their unique difference in thirty seconds or less. But once you’ve gained attention, you also need a tool that allows you to expand the workings of your killer technology in more detailed terms.
You need to be able to effectively expand your thirty-second version to a thirty-minute one that you might give as a sales presentation or use as the basis for an educational workshop.
Then you can create multiple versions on the same theme to keep it interesting and varied for different audiences. For instance, you can have the “7 Steps to Get a Result You Want” version and then the “7 Things You Must Avoid to Get a Result You Want” version.
In my experience it’s the businesses that take the time and effort to document their unique approach that are seen as a more credible experts on whatever topic they are addressing; are able to more easily explain their unique approaches; and can open up more channels to spread their message through speaking, cobranding and joint ventures.
John Jantsch is a marketing consultant and author of Duct Tape Marketing and The Referral Engine.