This is a guest post by Jock Purtle.
Marketing, both traditional and digital, can be a time and resource consuming process. There is research to be done and content to be created and distributed, all of which can drain you and your company if not done well.
And then you also need to engage in some form of progress tracking so that you can determine your return on investment and make sure you are getting what you need from your efforts.
However, the vast majority of businesses will still put up with this headache because it is ultimately better for business.
Everyone knows that in business, distribution is nine-tenths of the game. It is one thing to make a product or offer a service, but if you can’t find a way to get that product or service in front of willing customers so that they can buy it, your product is pretty useless.
This is why companies invest so much time and money into their marketing strategies. Because in the end, it works.
But perhaps you are in a different situation. Perhaps you are not building a business as a way of generating income for yourself, but are instead interested in building it so that you can sell it down the road for a profit. And perhaps because this is your plan you don’t think it’s necessary to invest heavily in marketing.
Well, quite simply, you’re wrong. Here’s why marketing is still essential even if your end game is to sell the business:
Good Marketing Promises Future Growth
When it finally comes time to sell your business, investors are going to want to know what you think will happen to it in the future. No one is interested in buying a business they think will stop being profitable within a year. Investors want to see that they can not only duplicate your success but also expand upon them so that the businesses will grow.
Successful marketing and a commitment to do it well will show this potential. Marketing helps bring in new customers, generate new leads and also build brand awareness, which are all things that go into creating a business that can stand the test of time.
Without a good marketing strategy, investors may think your success is due more to luck or timing than good business practices, and this will scare them away or push them to offer you way less money than you may want.
We just touched on this a little bit, but let’s take it another level. It is one thing for an investor to buy a profitable business, but it is quite another for them to buy a brand.
The general rule of thumb is that a business is worth 2.5 times its yearly revenues. So, if your sales numbers are good, you can expect a decent payday when it comes time to sell your business.
But do you just want to get the bare minimum for your business? Probably not. Marketing can help this. If you dedicate time to building your brand and are successful in doing so, you can expect investors to hand over more cash when you decide to sell.
Just think about it. Which company would be more valuable: Coca-Cola or RC Cola? Both may be profitable, but Coke’s brand is so strong, it makes the company infinitely more valuable.
Now you will not be able to achieve the type of brand awareness Coke has, but you get the idea; it helps add a level of intangible value to your company that will allow you to fetch a higher price when it is time to sell.
Most digital marketing strategies nowadays place heavy emphasis on link-building, since this is critical for you to rank higher in Google search results.
However, as you likely already know, getting good backlinks to your site and ranking well can be a bit of a challenge, especially if you are starting from scratch.
But if you dedicate some time to content marketing now while you are building the business, you will be adding another layer of value to your business that will help you get more money when you sell.
Just imagine being able to tell a future investor that you have thousands of backlinks and that you rank on the first page for a variety of high-value search terms. This kind of turnkey profitability will be very attractive to investors, and it will only come by paying attention to your marketing strategy now.
It should be clear that marketing is for everyone. Just because your end goal is to sell your business, it does not mean you should not be dedicating time and resources to marketing. Ignoring this key business function will only make your business less valuable, and your paycheck much smaller, when you do finally decide to sell.
Author Bio: Jock is an entrepreneur and the founder of Digital Exits, an online brokerage service dedicated to the buying/selling and appraisal of online businesses. He has spent most of his career buying and selling online companies, and one of the keys to his success has been a strong marketing strategy. Now, he works with other entrepreneurs so that they can enjoy the same success.