Seven Ways to Build Your Marketing Skills Without Going Back to Study

It’s Sunday, 1 April, 7 am, and I’m about to listen to a webinar. There are another 99 people on the call, the first of two marketing-related webinars I will be listening to within the space of three hours. All this taking place on Easter Sunday. It’s no April Fool’s joke.

Today, more than ever, we are living in a world where access to learning is so readily available, it’s on tap 24/7, 365 days a year, from anywhere on the planet. Much of this is for FREE. Even the busiest person can develop their marketing skills if they are hungry enough and know where to look.

Here are seven ways you can build contemporary marketing skills and knowledge without breaking into a sweat at the thought of using your precious free time to go back to study:

It’s Sunday, 1 April, 7 am, and I’m about to listen to a webinar. There are another 99 people on the call, the first of two marketing-related webinars I will be listening to within the space of three hours. All this taking place on Easter Sunday. It’s no April Fool’s joke.

Today, more than ever, we are living in a world where access to learning is so readily available, it’s on tap 24/7, 365 days a year, from anywhere on the planet. Much of this is for FREE. Even the busiest person can develop their marketing skills if they are hungry enough and know where to look.

Here are seven ways you can build contemporary marketing skills and knowledge without breaking into a sweat at the thought of using your precious free time to go back to study:

1 Webinars – webinars usually take up 60 to 90 minutes of your time without leaving your desk. They are designed as the first insight into more focused programs but are also a good way to filter out the skills you don’t need without spending money, not just on educational resources, but also on time and travel to get to face-to-face venues. If you’re going to spend money, then listening to webinars is an ideal way to try before you buy. Technology enables webinars to be presented morning, afternoon, evening, from anywhere in the world and as evergreen recordings. If you’re too busy for one scheduled time, there’s likely to be another one coming along real soon.

2 Join a local marketers club. If there’s one nearby, join it. This is a great way to focus your attention on marketing and you will be mixing with, and learning from, like-minded people. If we are the sum of the people we hang around with, then joining a local marketing club can only enhance your skills, knowledge and passion.

3 Business networks – in the absence of a dedicated marketing group, there are more likely to be business networking groups. There may, or may not, be restrictions around membership of business groups, but if you can get into them, they are a great way to hone your networking skills. Many small business owners are not natural networkers. Joining a business network is an ideal way for you to strike up conversations with strangers. Uncomfortable for some at first, regular attendance positions you within your business community, and opens up the world of referrals, leading to new customers.

4 Online networks – since Facebook algorithms changed recently, business gurus have been encouraging people more than ever, to join online business groups as an alternative to paid advertising. Whilst spamming is not allowed in these online communities (there may be official opportunities to promote your services), these communities are ways to gain trust in you as the business owner knowledgeable in your field, and consequently, group members will recommend you when somebody has a problem that you can solve. You will find that combining online and business networking activities puts faces to the names in the groups. If you are looking for a specific skill to help you in your business, there will be plenty of people in these groups offering services, programs and workshops.

5 Face-to-face workshops – even with advancing technology, there is a lot of value in attending face-to-face workshops. Depending on what you are looking for, workshops vary from FREE to serious money. Face-to-face workshops are great opportunities to network and meet like-minded people. They are also assuring in that many attendees are just like you. Most effective though, is that by being in the same physical environment as the workshop facilitator/guru, if the workshop is good, you will continue your professional development relationship online. You will gravitate towards their options because the journey of trust has already begun.

6 Books, articles and blogs – the written media is as powerful today as it has ever been. For added benefit, much of this is also replicated in audio and video formats for the audio-visual person. Books are readily available, online as well as in physical bookshops. Investing in a Kindle or other book e-reader enables you to build your own personal business library that you can carry with you and read anywhere, anytime – great for those long plane and train journeys. Start your library with some of the most effective business books from the last 100 years. Read them and let their messages permeate your sub-conscious brain. It is amazing how much knowledge you soak up which can then be used to improve your business.

7 Invest in coaching and mentoring. We all consider our marketing needs to be unique to our businesses. You can absorb as much knowledge as the above six methods can convey but knowing isn’t doing. A coach will help you overcome specific hurdles by showing you a better way, whilst a mentor will challenge your thinking and guide you to the next level.

Combine these learning strategies and your approach to marketing will change forever. As a business owner, even if you delegate the doing to another person, it is important to understand marketing principles and to stay ahead of the game. Better understanding and relevant knowledge lead to making informed choices and give you the competitive edge. Rather than spending hundreds of hours browsing the internet, attending workshops and listening to webinars, what if you could find this understanding and knowledge in one place? This is why we I wrote “The Intuitive Marketer”. I put in the hundreds of hours updating my marketing skills and knowledge and put my learning into the context of my experiences, to showcase how everyday marketing principles work in real life. The result is a book packed with so much information, that most people should walk sway something that they can incorporate into their business.

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