How to Learn about Marketing without Going to Business School

Learn marketing

Marketing is a vital part of growing your business. You have to be able to attract new customers, interact with your target demographic, and develop a strong brand if you want your company to succeed. But marketing is something that many new entrepreneurs don’t know how to tackle. It seems like this giant, three-headed beast that only a trained professional could possibly tame. And so, they think they’re left with only two options—hire someone else to do it, or go back to school to learn how to do it yourself.

But that’s not true. There are many ways that you can learn about marketing your company without having to go to business school. Here are just a few techniques that you might want to try.

Seek Out Learning Opportunities

Marketing skills are not just going to come to you intuitively. With a constantly shifting market, it takes determined focus and effort to really learn the skills you need to succeed. So start out by making learning about marketing your new job, and seek out every opportunity you can. This means everything from online courses to free eBook and guides on the topic. There is a plethora of information about marketing out there—start looking for it.

Understand SEO and SEM

Search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM) are cornerstones of marketing in the digital age. If you don’t know anything about these topics, this is where you need to start. Fortunately for you, Google—the godfather of SEO—offers free courses to help teach you about search advertising. So learn the basics of SEO and SEM, and implement what you learn on your business’s website.

Turn to Social Media

If you’re like most people, you’re on social media every day. Why not use that Facebook and Twitter time to help market your business. Start by taking a look at the way you interact with businesses on social media platforms. What sort of headlines get you to click and read an article? What posts are you most likely to engage with? Odds are, your behaviors will be mirrored by your target consumers as well, and they’ll be an important guide in helping you make marketing decisions.

There are a lot of online lessons out there for social media as well, so look for those. But the most important thing to know about using social media for your business is that you must be active! You should be posting every day, providing engaging content for your followers. If you’re not at least doing that much, then you’re not using social media properly as a marketing tool.

Start as a Consultant

If you really want to learn sales and marketing from the ground up, then you should consider making consulting your first entrepreneurial endeavor. Becoming a business consultant is fast, cheap, and relatively easy to manage. But for entrepreneurs, the lessons you’ll learn as a business consultant can become valuable tools that you’ll use in your future endeavors.

According to successful entrepreneur Sam Ovens, “Consulting is the best way to learn sales and marketing from the ground up…. Many of the marketing and sales strategies required to grow a new consulting firm are pretty straight forward, good ‘ole fashion selling techniques, and so you will learn from the ground up. This experience is invaluable later on when you are building a much more complex team with more resources to allocate.”

Additionally, in a consulting firm, the product you’re selling is you. Learning to sell yourself from day one is critical to entrepreneurial success, and business consulting provides the best on-the-job training available for this kind of skill.

While a business degree is a great way to learn about marketing, you don’t need to go back to school to learn how to market your business. Try these tips, and you just might be surprised by the results you can get.

About Mohit Tater

Mohit is the co-founder and editor of Entrepreneurship Life, a place where entrepreneurs, start-ups, and business owners can find wide ranging information, advice, resources, and tools for starting, running, and growing their businesses.

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