Probably the most common question people ask when they first meet someone is, “What do you do for a living?”
A business owner will commonly answer with the product or service the business does: “I’m an accountant.” “I’m a dog groomer.” “I’m a software engineer.” “I’m a chef.”
Business owners that believe it when they say this haven’t really created a business. They have created a job for themselves. (And they usually have a lousy employee and a worse boss!)
A business owner should be an entrepreneur, which means a person who creates businesses. The skills of creating a business are different from the skills of performing the service or producing the product the business delivers.
The core skill of the entrepreneur is marketing — building and nurturing a “herd” of customers who are raving fans and communicating with them to generate a steady stream of revenue.
Without customers and sales, there can be no business.
Businesses that reduce their marketing during a recession are committing suicide.
Most of the other functions of the business, even product development, can be outsourced, but marketing should always be the primary concern of the entrepreneur/business owner. The entrepreneur must be able to at least recognize good marketing when he or she sees it and implement it consistently.