I love to get questions from readers. After all its good for my ego when someone cares what I think!

One of our Business Pros Marketing

readers sent in this question…

Recently a friend of mine started a business installing and repairing overhead doors; Residential, Commercial and Industrial. Things have been very busy for him, thus allowing him to lease the much needed cube van.

I asked him if he was going to promote his business on the side of the cube van. He said he doesn’t want to because he is already too busy and can’t handle anymore business.

To me, this seems short-sighted as I explained to him that not all of his potential clients are in the buying mode at present and what he needs to create is top share of mind through repetition or exposure. I suggested what he needs to do is learn how to say no to work he can’t handle at the time and possibly develop a relationship with one of his competitors that will enable them to handle overload business.

I went on to tell him, in my opinion, that most or all businesses should be advertising or promoting their business all of the time with what I call base level advertising (designed for top share of mind) and then ramp it up for seasonal or special projects.

What are your thoughts? He thought I was out to lunch.

Here’s my response.

Your friend is indeed lucky that he has more business than he can handle. I hope it continues for him.

I’m not sure advertising on the side of a cube van will increase his business significantly unless he’s very creative. However let’s suppose that it does, what happens then?

  • He can be a lot more selective around the kind of work he does and the kind of clients he takes on. I’m not sure all of his jobs are conveniently located, nor are they all equally profitable. In addition some work may be fun to do, other work is not. This being the case, being selective can result in more cash, better clients and more fulfilling work. If people think you are in demand they will often pay more, so saying no can be good for your business. It’s definitely good for your sanity. As you point out he can sell these leads to someone else or even hire another person and grow the business.
  • Business seldom continues at the pace your friend’s business is operating at. All businesses have quiet periods, marketing takes time to be effective, so when you need more clients you can’t simply turn them on. Some marketing should always be happening to protect you from these cycles.
  • Because of the nature of what your friend does, his customers don’t need him every day, but when they do they’ll need to remember his name and where to find him. If they see his truck in the neighborhood, there is a good chance they might remember him when the time comes that they need him.

Marketing is the business of business. Very few business problems cannot be solved by adding a few more profitable sales.

What do you think?