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A lot of people are probably wondering why we would make such a claim about marketing consulting since it’s by far the #1 used marketing related keyword that is attached to the consulting industry; which year after year proves to be a billion dollar industry. With so many companies looking for this type of consultation to help with their marketing to expand and succeed with their business, how could it be possible that it’s a bad investment? Here are a few reasons:
1) Looking For Marketing Consulting Is Too Broad
With so many forms of marketing these days, for a business owner to be looking for marketing consulting without knowing which type of marketing they are interested in and willing to invest in… the time and money that will be given to a general marketing consultant can be better used.
It’s like being located in San Francisco, and you are in the middle of union square walking up to people saying that you will pay them to tell you how you can get to Los Angeles. You could fly on an airplane, but do you have enough money to fly or a fear of flying? You could drive, but do you have a car and do you mind road trips? You could ride a horse, but you’d probably never make it and travel horses are hard to come by in most of San Francisco. You could ride a train, but since no train travels to Los Angeles in the city of San Francisco, so you’d have to somehow travel to a nearby train station in another city to make the trip happen. Are you getting the point yet?
Sure there are plenty of companies that have the money readily available to invest in marketing consultation services, but that does not mean spending that money will benefit you or them. There are some instances where a company wants to know all of their options when it comes to marketing and branding for their business, and if that’s the situation you find yourself in… then working with a marketing consultant isn’t a terrible idea.
However, if you know that you’re interested in focusing on a specific demographic in your city or that you want to use social media or you want to use search engine marketing or you want to use the age old method of using a phone book… our advice to you is to seek experts in those specific marketing channels.
2) Many Marketing Consultants Are Far Removed From Actual Marketing Strategy
Since many individuals that refer to themselves are marketing consultants are well versed in the different types of marketing platforms currently available, and are able to recommend the marketing channels that best suit your business, budget, and goals… it can be hard for them to provide actionable next steps on how to succeed in those industries. That’s not to say that they aren’t qualified or experienced enough to do so, but the fact of the matter is that their decision is to focus on marketing the business as a whole rather that specific ways a business can do so successfully.
That’s not to say that their expertise isn’t valuable and that they shouldn’t be paid fairly for their time and assistance that they can provide your business. However, the intent of what a company is looking for most of the time when they do an online search for a marketing consulting service is not what was just described. Instead, many of them are looking for an expert that can give them specific direction on how they can succeed with a particular type of marketing, not broad generalities… although, at times such insight can be precious to a company.
3) There Are Plenty Of Reports Of It Not Providing An ROI
With that said, what we’re hoping to do here is to help our growing audience understand that paying someone to tell you to go pay someone else to help you get what you need is usually not going to produce a measurable ROI right away; if ever. Many of you have expressed your disappointment in working with some of the marketing consultants out there that do nothing more than point you in the right direction. Again, we’re not saying that those marketing professionals offer no value to the world of marketing because without many of them the marketing industry wouldn’t be growing at the rate it has been year after year.
However, for those of you out there looking to invest in speaking with an expert that can help you establish and implement a marketing strategy that will help you attain a measurable and accepting ROI, our advice is to spend a bit of time understanding what some of the most successful companies in your industry are doing from a marketing standpoint. From there, you can get a sense of your interest and limitations in similar marketing verticals and identify which one(s) might be best suited for your business.
And after you’ve done your own research and established which type of marketing you want to invest in… then you should be looking for a consultation from experts in that industry.
So… we hope we haven’t stepped on any toes or offended any marketing consultants because that wasn’t our intent. Instead, we’re looking out for the consultant by making sure they’re not contacted and paid by someone who will later end up being disappointed with the services provided. Additionally, we’re trying to help protect the reputation of the marketing consultation industry as a whole by helping businesses that aren’t familiar with these types of services get a sense of what it is that they really need.
But whatever the case, we hope you now have a better understanding of why marketing consulting has proven to be a bad investment for many businesses. If you’d like some further direction in this regard for your business, feel free to let us know. Nomvo!