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Seriously - are you far too much in love with your products?

In 1991 I finally published my first novel at a large publishing house - after five years of stubbornly hard working. When I asked them how they would market the book, they had no answer.

The book came with the registry the booksellers use on their computers, but that was all. At this time, I worked as an assistant and had a strict budget for everything. So I persuaded the publisher to print a single A3 poster in their copier. Then I went to a store, bought 100 T-shirts and printed the novel's title on the shirts and gave it to booksellers and put up posters all over town one night along with some buddies.

It would be a hit - it was my book. I, I, I, I, I - big mistake. Nothing happened. Today we will talk about the deadly enemies you have in everyday life.

Beware of these traps in everyday life:

1. The Ego trip
”Damn it, we're good. Damn we're good.”No matter how good you may think you are, it's the customers' voice that counts in the end. It's the customers who will talk about how good you are. They do it with their money and they do that if they like what you do. Criticize what you deliver, even though everyone seems to love it. It's your job as a marketer to surprise them all over again. If customers don' understand what you understand - that your product is better than those available on the market right now - then it's actually you who failed to sell it to them.

2. Saturation
The marketer's worst enemy is to be measured. This condition occurs immediately after a three-course consisting of constant orders, six-months of money in the bank and promises of large orders in the future. This is when you need to take another step. The key to not being measured is to have a plan to follow. There are things to be done, no matter how full and satisfied you become. But it's good to be full and satisfied, and to get to relax a little. This is exactly the way a host of businesses have reasoned minutes before they were overtaken.

3. The Martyr
”We are doing everything we can and yet we fail to fulfill our goals.” Whining when things go bad doesn't work. If you have major collaborations in the pipeline, an order which is just out of reach, a purchaser who is procrastinating – let it all go. Move on to other projects. There are about 24 346 sellers out there now who have already figured out how to get an order because they want it badly enough.”I want it ” is not the same as ”getting it”. You have to adapt. You need to be flexible. Look for the entrance that is made for your business - it may sound like empty words, but they will cause your business to sparkle instead of becoming a reed in the wind (another true cliché).

4. Adapting problems
Realize that whatever you are selling, there are buyers. That's just the way it is. It might not be the buyer you think, maybe not even the one you want, but business is about making profit, not about you deciding which customers you want. Look for your customers by looking for those likely to pay for what you offer. It's easy – just look, look, look. When you find customers, you will understand that it was just them you wanted.

5. It's not easy
True, but who has said it would be?

That's right - what happened to my novel, I hear you asking. Well, the bookstores sold 300 copies. Once I managed to get the courage to buy the full version from the publisher, I threw the books in the boxes in the car and visited over 2 000 companies (knock, knock on the door) for the Christmas season – and sold the book in no time.

Do it now!

About the author

Stefan Ekberg has worked in marketing for small business for 20 years and has written around 30 books on how small business owners can market themselves with limited resources. . In 2012 Stefan was nominated as Entrepreneur of the Year in Stockholm.

230 000 prescribes to his free newsletter "The 5 minute marketer"
Every week some 230,000 prescribers gets his free newsletter about 5 minute marketing.

"The 5 minute marketer" - the book
You run a small business and you want to get ahead of the competition, but how can you give resources to marketing when you're short on time and the budget is tight? The solution is here! The 5-Minute Marketer is packed with 395 tried-and-tested ways to market your business in 5 minutes or less.