Picture a fisherman going fishing for some little fish. He takes his net, sends it out to catch as many as possible, and hauls in a good dozen. And then brilliance hits: what if I stretch the same net out over a wider area to catch even more?

But now, all those holes have opened up so big that the little fish just swim right through the net!
This is exactly how so many small businesses do marketing, with the intention of casting a wide net to bring in more leads, and losing them all in the process.

Most small businesses and nonprofits think they need a LOT of exposure online marketing, social media ads, print ads in magazines, flyers, mailings, trade shows and every other promotional strategy out there. This generalized marketing approach is just like the fisherman’s wide net. It might work for big business (though often not for them either) but as a small business you’re not going for the masses, and your specific “fish” often swim through.

So what’s the solution?

Instead of casting his net over a wide area, all the fisherman has to do is keep his net tight in one small area. This way, the holes in his net are too small for the fish to get away.

Keep your marketing simple and cost effective with a very targeted approach. Use specific marketing channels, either hyper-local or hyper-targeted with niche hashtags, industry publications, direct messaging and the like and a targeted marketing message to cast your small “net” aiming for a very specific group of ‘fish,” with reciprocal engagement. This way, you will get the most bang for your buck, with low marketing expenses and lots of clients and customers. 

Don’t get caught in the trap of thinking more is better, even more seems more holy it’s just full of holes.

Happy fishing!



Estie Rand is an internationally acclaimed lecturer and business consultant specializing in helping small business owners and nonprofits bring in more money with less headache. She can be reached at estie@strandconsulting.net for all your business and nonprofit related questions in areas of marketing, profitability, growth strategies and more.

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