The biggest question that I’ve been asked as a small business counselor is “Why is it so hard to market my business?”

Although they don’t realize it, the answer is in the very reason that they got into business in the first place.  Most entrepreneurs start a business because they know how to do something or have a dream.

If you’re in the gift or gift basket business, you probably had made gift baskets to give to friends who said you should go into business or you took a class and decided that it would be a fun business to operate.

But few new entrepreneurs know how to market their business once they have created it.  They think of marketing as something you do after you get the business going.  They fail to realize that regardless of what kind of business you are in, you are in the marketing business.

I could have been a prime example of this.  I was a Realtor who made gift baskets for my customers after I sold a house and decided that delivering gift baskets that made people smile would be a whole lot easier and more fun than dealing with grumpy buyers, loan offices who didn’t want to give a long, and title companies that took the closing date all the way to the wire.

But I was different from any who start a business.  I had created, built and sold other businesses.  I had used marketing to build my Real Estate business into a multi-million dollar sales record.  I had learned from research, experience, and hard knocks the secrets of marketing.  I rode the Train to Success and as we travel togetherI am going to share the secrets that I learned along the way with you.

There are many reasons why a business fails. . . not enough money, not enough time, not having a good product, and on and on.

But the primary reason most businesses fail is the failure to market.

Most owners of failed businesses simply had no idea of how to market or perhaps didn’t even understand what marketing is.  So instead of learning, they simply stuck their head in the sand like an ostrich and hoped.

Hope is wonderful but it doesn’t build a business.

If this is you, pull that head out of the sand and climb on the train to success.  You’ll love where it takes you.

I’ll be posting on this Success Express site regularly and sending out emails to those of you who sign up for the free ticket to the Express letting you know when the new posts are available.  I invite your comments and your questions about what you would like to know most.

Most of what I’m going to share with you, you’ve heard before.  It’s common sense.  It’s the little things.  It’s building relationships with your customers and I’ll be sharing some ways to do this without selling.

Marketing is like putting together a complicated puzzle.  Each piece contains information that makes sense only when you see the finished product.  I’ll be sharing some of the pieces of that puzzle that I have used to grow not only this business, but also my gift basket business, my real estate business, and my statewide newspaper.  Most of those pieces will fit any marketing puzzle, regardless of the industry.

Business success comes from a combination of vision, passion, and hard work.  All three are required or your business path will be rocky.  If you eliminate any one of the three, you may as well close up your business now.

That train to success is leaving the station today with this post.  It’ll be chugging along with further posts to encourage you, to show you how-to, and to help you along the way.  Watch your email box for the next one.

Are you ready to climb on or are you going to stay behind at the station?

60 thoughts on “Climb on the Train to Success”

  1. Marketing has changed SO much in the 25 years that I have had my gift company. If we don’t change, adapt and keep learning then we get stale.

    That doesn’t work for food products and it doesn’t work for sales!

  2. Dear Joyce,
    I am one of those business owners who thinks I don’t have the right personality for marketing. I am looking forward to learning from you so please consider me to be on board for this journey. Chugga-chugga toot toot!!

    Sylvia Kirby
    Itsa Bella Baskets

  3. Great article Joyce. On the train with you! You are so right it’s so easy to lose one of the three. Been there.. Now taking my head out of the sand..

    • Thank you Joyce. Love this article. Very inspiring. This can really assist me with marketing my gift basket business.

    • Just want to clarify. THE MAGAZINE IS NOT GOING AWAY OR CHANGING. It will still be in our subscriber’s email boxes on the first day of every month. It’s just that I will be replacing the monthly newsletter with more frequent emails as I described in the article above. I think these will hopefully be more helpful to you than just the once a month newsletter.

  4. I really enjoy your articles and learning from your experience. This article most certainly left me wanting more! 🙂 Can’t wait for the next article. I love being creative! The marketing side of it all, not so much. It is so much more difficult and doesn’t come naturally. Thank you for sharing your experience with us! 🙂

  5. I’m all in on this TRAIN-ing movement, Joyce! So much gratitude here for all that you do. Not sure how and when you find the time to do all these extras for us but it’s certainly appreciated! Looking forward to the journey!

  6. Looking forward to seeing all of you on the train tomorrow as I stamp your tickets and the train gets underway. Watch your email box tomorrow.

  7. It sounds like fun! All aboard!
    I am definitely ready to get all of the information I can.
    Even though I started my original business in 1989, I am now living in the third
    state (California to Washington and now Arizona) since that time. It is almost like
    starting over, but it always helps to get outside information.

  8. Glad to have all of you on board. The first train bulletin (need to think of a good name for them. Ideas, anyone?) went out this morning to everyone who had signed up for the newsletter so that everyone had one last chance to climb on board.

    The next one will be out later this week but it will only go to those of you who have expressed an interest in riding the train. So watch your email for it!

  9. Joyce, I am sooo ready to leave this station. Btw, how about “The Success Express” for a name?

  10. If all of you are going to get the full benefit of this, you will need to make sure that you have my email whitelisted so that the emails don’t go into your junk mail. If you are using a gmail address, there is a good possibility that they will end up in the promotions tab instead of the personal tab at the top of your email list. All you have to do is use your curser to move the email up into the personal box and future emails should automatically go there.

    Thanks for climbing on the train. Today’s first mail bag was tossed off the train this morning and I sent it out again to those of you who waited until today to climb on the train. Watch for the next one coming soon.

  11. Finally found my ticket at the bottom of my purse! I am hoping by taking this ride that I can get back on track. I am keeping this 4 th quarter light because we will be moving right before Thanksgiving.

    • You’re on, Debbie. Get ready for the ride of your life. Good luck on your move. That can be very frazzling!

    • Margaret and Stacey, you’ll be loaded onboard at the next station. Watch your email early next week for the subject Success Express.

    • Debbie, Connie, and Michelle: We’ll pick you up at the next station. Watch your email box for the subject Success Express for directions early this week.


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