You may remember an interview the late Tim Russert on ‘Meet The Press’ did with President Bush, where Russert asked him if Iraq was a war of choice or a war of necessity.
I have often used the language “on the business battlefield”, because for most entrepreneurs, there is, in fact, a battlefield, where we joust with clear and present threats to productivity, profit and peace of mind, shoot to kill distractions, and march toward uncertainty and sudden danger.
Like everyone else in America, the entrepreneur chooses his life and lifestyle. Ours is a war of choice, although arguably also of compulsion. However I would like to re-emphasize a warning about a new war of necessity for the business owner.
The marketer’s fundamental, basic ability and opportunity to take his marketing message to his marketplace, to his prospects, even his customers is under assault, with advantage being given to big business, disadvantage handed to small business. Yes, any business has the same opportunity to fork over a million bucks for a commercial on the Super Bowl, but as practical matter, only big companies can do so.
Media like telemarketing, broadcast FAX, e-mail, even TV infomercials have a profound impact: they act to level the playing field between big and small businesses. These media give the local hardware store fresh life, better options in countering Wal-Mart; a tiny software company to compete with Gates, the local restaurant to compete with the big chains. These media also remove geographic limitations for many businesses, another benefit to small business, a leveling of the playing field yet another way.
The removal of these tools and opportunities from small business is literally a war on small business. It is depressing to me how easily everybody is surrendering. What a truly crappy, spineless job the numerous associations representing industries, businesses, marketers are doing with regard to these matters. Are the associations you belong to fighting on your side in this war? If not, withhold your support.
Small business is losing this war. I’m afraid that mandates Plan-B. It makes it most urgent for you to build your herd as rapidly and aggressively as you possibly can right this minute, before more weapons are taken from you. Time is short to secure your 100%-permission-based marketing opportunities, sufficient in size to support you in the post-war, weapons-confiscated environment.