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Entrepreneurship Marketing: Approaching It In A Way That Actually Feels Good

Updated: Aug 28, 2023

Create an excellent online customer experience through marketing that feels good. It's possible and only takes a simple shift in how you approach marketing.

Many accidental entrepreneurs view marketing as "bad" or "slimy" because of previous experiences that felt that way. As someone who is trying to build a business that operates in a way that serves your customers in a way that helps them, you certainly want your marketing to feel good too. But the question is how to do this?

In this article, I've interviewed an expert in creating a positive online experiences. Caitlin shares her pro-tips on how to approach marketing in a way where you are the guide to an excellent online experience that welcomes in your dream customers.


**This was also a podcast episode (episode #204. Use the player below if you'd prefer to listen to this message.


Think Like IKEA When You Plan Your Marketing & Online Experience

As silly as this might sound, when it comes to creating an excellent online experience it's actually helpful to think about an in-person experience first. If you've ever been to an IKEA store you know a few things:

  • It can be very overwhelming because there's so much to see

  • They have a very thought-out way of helping you navigate because of this

As you walk into an IKEA there are arrows on the floor and specific pathways to certain sections of the store. For example, if you're ready to spend time and wonder around, you can follow that path but if you know you're looking for curtains, you can navigate there quickly, find what you need and get out of the store.

This is how we want to approach creating the online experience for your customer, specifically think about your website. Caitlin shares that it's best to think about it in terms of you being a guide for the person who's visiting your website.

"You follow the arrows, that's what we're talking about when we say being a good guide" - Caitlin

By being a "guide" for your potential customers you aren't trying to sell them something right away but rather ask questions to help you suggest something specific for them. This is what you can accomplish with your marketing.

Ikea building image

What Entrepreneurs Need In Order To Create A Great Online Experience & Marketing

In order to be an effective guide for your customers, you need the following:

  • Understanding what your audience knows and the language they use

  • Knowing how they arrived at your digital space

  • Approaching the creation process with grace and the approach of helping and being of service to the person on the other side of the screen

The number one thing that will help you become an effective and supportive guide for others is being curious about your customers/audience. As you continue to talk to your current customers and interact with others on social media, be curious to understand where they are struggling and how you help them.

While you always listen to others, this is perhaps a new lens to listen through. As you ask questions and talk with people, start to note the specific words they use to describe what they are struggling with and how they describe how you help them.

"Being a good guide would be staying curious during that conversation, asking them lots of questions about their experience, what's going on with them, what are their goals, how can you help them? And then at the end of the conversation having being a good guide also is saying this isn't the path for you, but here's some other ways that you can go. And giving that what a generous thing to say and what a real and honest and authentic thing to deliver to them is to say I don't think you're in the right place, but I know exactly where you could go." - Caitlin

"By being a guide you're being a leader...but you still want to stay curious the whole time." - Caitlin

How To Call In The "Right" Client For Your Business As An Entrepreneur

When it comes to creation of an experience, it's critical to know exactly who you want to connect with. Many people often forget that the goal of effective marketing is to both attract the "right" person for you and repel the "wrong" person for you.

To be clear, we aren't saying there are right and wrong people, but as a business you can't try and please everyone so it's important to know who is the best-fit customer for you and who isn't best fit for you. Once you know this, it's easier to create an excellent experience for the best-fit person for you and your services/products.

"When you take on clients that aren't the best fit for you, you will learn in that experience as well. It's all part of the journey." - Caitlin

The first step to this creation process is to know who is the best fit for you. This comes from experience of working with people. As you continue to work with others take note of what works well and what doesn't and you'll get more and more clear on who you work best with.

The next step is to speak directly to that specific person. The way in which this happens is by noting the very specific words your customers and clients use.

For example, "I work with entrepreneurs" isn't very clear but "I help entrepreneurs who are stuck in procrastination so they can make progress and feel proud of their successful business" is much more clear.

This is one of my specific examples and it's clearer because I've heard many of clients say "I procrastinate" and "I want to be proud of my business but I'm not taking action". By understanding the specifics of how my audience feels about their struggle, I'm able to use their words in my marketing.

*Side Note: if you're finding yourself procrastinating, check out my accountability coaching options here.

Being Honest About The Experience

All good guides are accurate in how they describe what to expect and this is what you want to do in your marketing as well. Sometimes this is easier to see when the opposite happens.

Imagine that you're someone who doesn't like strenuous hikes and you signed up for a hike that was advertised as "easy" but it ended up not being easy. This would lead to a very negative experience for you and that's not what we want for our clients and customers.

The way in which you can do this is to be accurate and generous with your information. Don't gate-keep information you have.

"Be generous with your information." - Caitlin

You Won't Get It Perfect At First, All Progress Helps You Get Better Over Time

Just like with anything else in life, you likely won't this perfect at first but it will get better and better over time. As you continue to learn about who you work best with and how your customers share about their struggle and how you help them, you will become a better guide.

"When things shift in your business, things have to shift in your marketing and it can feel messy in the middle but it's part of the process." - Amanda McKinney

"I used to think I was striving for the end so the goalpost was always moving and it caused me I feel more comfortable that business is always evolving and your customer is always evolving so how you serve them will evolve too...we need to give ourselves permission to play and see what works." - Caitlin

However, as you learn and grow as an entrepreneur, you will tap into a more comfortable-confidence. While you don't feel this when you're in the messy-middle of shifts and learning, it will happen.

Image of 3 women standing with their arms supporting one another

Navigating The Emotions & Thoughts About Entrepreneurship Marketing

Throughout the process of being a good guide in your marketing, you'll also be navigating many ups and downs in entrepreneurship overall. Caitlin shares how it's important to have support of others during this journey.

"Talk with other online business people. Tap into some sense of community, even if you're not a big community person, find a few people so you can vent and let it out. You need to be around people who understand." - Caitlin

By having a support system, this will help you sort out the feelings that come along, shake it off and get back at it again. It will help you get back up after you feel like you've fallen down, which happens to all of us. Our support system will also help us remember to take care of ourselves during this journey as well.

"Take excellent care of yourself as you go through this journey." - Caitlin

When it comes to finding your support system, it's important to find those who have similar values as yourself. When you find these people you will have support in setting and holding boundaries, navigating the tough parts of entrepreneurship as well as celebrating the wins along the way too.

*If you'd like to learn more about finding your support system, chapter 6 in my book Why Not You? An Accidental Entrepreneur's Guide To Success goes into detail on this process. I've identified 5 groups of people that make up your support system and I share who they are, when you need them and how to find them.

Take Away Message / Action

As you've learned from Caitlin on how to be a good guide in your marketing, I'll leave you with her words as your next step.

"Be a guide, stay curious, take care of yourself." - Caitlin

Allowing yourself to be curious in your conversations with others and allowing that to inform your marketing will help you be effective. Take note of things you hear repeatedly and let those words inform what's on your website and the content you create to build your business.

Until next time give yourself permission to be a guide through your marketing and grace along the way. I'll talk to you soon.

About Caitlin:

Caitlin creates digital experiences that are delightful, engaging, and smooth as buttah. She helps online business owners make sure each of their clients are superbly serviced, their needs are anticipated, and the ball never drops. She’s fascinated by human connection in digital spaces and harnessing tech for good (+fun!)

Caitlin's Resources:

Other Resources Mentioned:

Ep. 202: Lazy Content Creation with Shannon Weinstein

"By being a guide you're being a leader...but you still want to stay curious the whole time."

- Caitlin


Build Your Business YOUR Way!

Image of Program: Proffitt Podcasting

In my book: Why Not You? An Accidental Entrepreneur's Guide To Success, you create your Y.O.U. Promise which becomes your guide to building the business of your dreams...not your nightmares.

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