Gordon Ramsay, Craig Revel Horwood, Jon Taffer and Simon Cowell all have one thing in common.
No, not that they are perceived as the harshest critics on TV.
They are all experts in their particular field. Whether its Ramsay’s cooking expertise, Simon Cowell’s ability to spot star potential or Jon Taffer’s ability to turn around failing bars and restaurants, their knowledge and experience is what sets them apart.
Recently I’ve been addicted to the loud and brash American TV series called Bar Rescue. A TV show that sends in bar, food and drink experts into a failing bar or club that has just about run out of money and time.
What is really interesting is that all these bars have just a few issues. Things that appear so simple to the armchair adviser, yet the business owner seems oblivious. How often have you sat watching The Apprentice or Dragons Den and proclaimed “that’s ridiculous” or “that will never work”?
In this show, after just a few days the owners have confidence, a renewed passion for the business and go from losing money to making money in a heartbeat. All they needed was guidance and the speed.
Sadly, I see a lot of local businesses in the same position when it comes to their marketing or online presence.
You see, success is a cycle. When you have a little success, it creates confidence. Confidence then in turn creates activity. The activity then turns into (successful) habits, which in turn creates success and so the cycle continues.
Equally the opposite is true. A lack of success creates a lack of confidence. When you are low on confidence, you tend not to do the activity required. That lack of activity becomes an (unsuccessful) habit which leads to failure and a lack of confidence.
Often when a business is at its lowest point, it has very little funds to create a boost to break the cycle and can really be a tough place to be. This is exactly the time you need to invest with either time, money or expertise.
If you can’t afford an expert then research like crazy. Who are the leaders in your industry? Whether that’s retail (Mary Portas or Sir Philip Green), sandwiches (Pret a Manger, Subway, etc) or bars (Jon Taffer) you can usually find interviews, videos and tutorials to give you the kick start.
Equally, you can often find an expert who is willing to come in and work on a success based fee. It won’t be cheap, but if you pick the right partner then it can be a win-win situation. If you do go down this route though, be sure that they have actually delivered similar projects in the past and that you actually like the person.
You also need to be prepared to act on the advice given. As a marketing company I don’t mind clients not implementing when they have paid a fee, it can’t happen when it’s a commission-only type arrangement.
Be really clear on the deliverables and outcomes required and you’ll soon be getting your first taste of success again.