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6 Major Roadblocks in Marketing for Small Businesses & How to Clear Them

If you don’t know what’s broken, you can’t fix it. But I speak with entrepreneurs all the time who can't exactly name what isn’t working in their business. They feel like it's somewhat of a mystery. 🎱🪄

When I ask what their challenges are, I get answers like:

  • "I know what to do but can't seem to get myself to do it"
  • "Guess maybe I need to do more marketing"
  • "Probably I don't have the right program or products"
  • "I’m doing ALL the things...but I don’t have enough clients"

And when I ask how they can fix these, there’s no clear answer. That’s because these are all vague statements that don't actually pinpoint the real issues.

And with no clarity on the problem, there’s no clarity on the way out of it.

If a car breaks, we can’t guess what’s wrong, cross our fingers, and hope the right fix lands on us. We have to diagnose exactly where the issue is and follow the best practices for fixing that part. Ditto when it comes to marketing for small businesses.

Use the list below to pinpoint where your issue is so you can make a plan to fix it.

Honestly, half the battle of procrastination (or perfectionism or whatever is holding you back) is the belief in the underlying lie that there isn’t an easy fix…or at least not one for you!!

Not true, cupcake. Remember, courage is only needed when there’s fear. So be brave, dive in, and come up with a new approach, especially in the realm of marketing for small businesses.

Which of these is your #1 issue?

1. MINDSET/MOTIVATION

Feeling scared? Doubtful? Overly confused? All of this leads to procrastinating like it’s an Olympic sport? It’s time for a mindset makeover.

The fix: Dive into personal development like it’s your new religion. Seek a mindset coach who won’t sugarcoat things, soak up motivational content that actually lights a fire under you, and establish a daily routine that includes time for reflection and mindfulness practices. There are often buried fears that have to be unearthed and soothed to overcome this hurdle (often a good dose of self-acceptance is just what the Dr. ordered, which is why I use Human Design with my clients!). It might help to join a mastermind group or seek a mentor or therapist who can provide guidance and hold you accountable.

2. GETTING LEADS

This is your issue if one of these fits:

  • You don’t know where your ideal clients are or how to get in front of them with effective marketing for small businesses.
  • You are getting visible to your dream clients–but they are not opting into taking next steps with you (like opting in to that lead magnet you sweated over for weeks!!)
  • No one is ever asking YOU how they might be able to work with you.
  • Your offers are attracting everyone but your dream clients.

The fix: Your messaging & its aim needs to be reworked for more effective marketing for small businesses. Get crystal clear on who you are trying to attract and get in front of them on the platform that you resonate with (your choice, you do not have to be on social media!!). Clarify your message so it speaks directly to these dream clients, making them feel like you’re the answer they’ve been searching for. Learn the art of nurturing these connections until they are ready to become clients.

3. MAKING SALES

So you’re visible but not getting engagement? Having sales conversations aplenty but no takers? Perhaps it's time to fine-tune your pitch.

The fix: Roll up your sleeves and get to work. Sharpen those sales skills until you’re slicing through objections like a hot knife through butter. Reassess your offers. If they’re not biting, you’re not packaging or selling it right for effective marketing for small businesses.

4. CLIENT RETENTION

Clients aren’t sticking around for more than one go? Trust me, it’s a lot of work to keep bringing in new people. When you can set up your business to work with a client for a long time, you've made your business more profitable with way less marketing for small businesses.

The fix: Treat your clients like the gold they are. Exceed their expectations, and make leaving you the last thing on their minds. Seek out their feedback, make needed adjustments, and get them results so they can’t help but stay for the long haul. If you don't have one, this fix may mean adding in an offer that your initial clients can graduate to.

5. PLANNING/SYSTEMS

Feeling a bit all over the place? A little organization can go a long way, especially in marketing for small businesses. If you spend more than 10% of your week on administrative tasks or if you find yourself doing the same tasks over and over and over…this one is all you.

The fix: Get your act together. Plans and systems aren’t just buzzwords — they’re your roadmap to a smoother operation. Organize, automate, delegate. Rinse and repeat until your business runs smoother than a freshly oiled Peloton. The aim is efficiency, not busyness.

6. TIME MANAGEMENT/TRACKING

Struggling to find time for the work that matters or life too busy for you to actually do the work? If 24 hours seems to vanish in minutes, read on.

The fix: Stop playing victim to time and start being its master. Set priorities, schedule the time you need, and for heaven’s sake, stop trying to do everything yourself. Delegate, automate, or eliminate. We all have the same 24 hours…act like your dreams are worth some of this time.

MAKE A PLAN:

It’s decision time. You can either keep spinning your wheels, or you can start paving a new path. First, decide if you can get the information you need to DIY your way out of this or if you need guidance. Then tackle your biggest problem first, solve it, and then BAM! onto your second one. If you proceed in this way, step-by-step you'll head toward sustainable, successful outcomes in your marketing for small businesses.

Got questions or feeling stuck? Reach out to me through lindabasso.com and I'll give you an answer or help pinpoint your issue, pinky promise.

If you are stuck with issue #1, #2, or #3…consider it solved when you join my new Human Design for Authentic Marketing course. In 6 short weeks, we’ll get you through these issues plus more, focusing on effective strategies for marketing for small businesses.


Linda is a mindset + marketing coach who supports purpose driven entrepreneurs to create small business growth with authentic marketing and creating alignment in their business. Her 20+ year marketing career has included working with Kimpton Hotels, Jamba Juice, and Disney helping her clients win awards and placements in publications like The Wall Street Journal and TIME Magazine, as well as on the front cover of WIRED magazine. She now works with coaches, healers, influencers, rebels & other service based small business owners offering a done for you small business marketing package or Human Design & marketing coaching. You can visit her at lindabasso.com or join her FB conversation.

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