For all you internet marketing bods and gooners here is an exclusive extract… the very first page selected from 382 pages of the soon to be released The Ultimate Small Business Marketing Book by Dee Blick.

It’s a little story in its own right…

Whenever I ask business owners to tell me what they believe the word ‘marketing’ means, you can be sure that each response will vary. ‘Marketing is all about advertising’, I hear, or ‘It’s producing sales leaflets and brochures’, ‘It’s supporting the sales force’‘Marketing is all about networking with the right people’. Whilst each one of these responses is true to some extent, they also illustrate the misunderstanding that surrounds the meaning of marketing. Let’s start this first chapter on the right footing with one of the best definitions of marketing that I have come across in the last 26 years. It’s from the late Peter Doyle, who was one of the world’s leading consultants on marketing and strategy. In his book, Marketing

Management & Strategy, he defines marketing thus:

‘Marketing is a philosophy of business that places the customer at the centre of the universe.’

What I really like about this definition is that it clearly defines marketing as being 100% about the customer. Most small business owners are in business because they have seen the potential in striking out on their own with what they believe is a winning product or service. However, once their initial excitement has subsided, they will only be successful in growing their fledgling idea into a sustainable and profitable business if they are fully customer-focused. Using Doyle’s definition, we can see that marketing should run through every part of a small business – sales, finance, business development, IT, administration and customer care. By inference therefore, each element of a small business should have the needs of the customer at its core, and all decisions should be taken with the customer firmly in mind.

‘How will this proposed change impact on our customers? Will they welcome it or regard it as a negative move?’

This question should be explored in detail before any changes are made to the business. In this way, the changes that are implemented will enhance the customer’s experience, or at least avoid having a negative impact on the relationship that your customers have with your business.

You can pre-order this book on Amazon UK.  Rrp £15.00