BUSINESS MARKETING: Marketing parasites getting gobbled up

2012-11-18T00:00:00Z BUSINESS MARKETING: Marketing parasites getting gobbled upLarry Galler Times Business Columnist
November 18, 2012 12:00 am  • 

If you are anything like me, you are receiving tons of marketing right now.

It is coming to us by every type of media outlet – newspapers, TV, direct mail, radio, email, and I expect that, any day now, a carrier pigeon will deliver an advertisement to me by flying in through an open window. But 99 percent of the advertising I receive is from national or regional companies. Almost none comes from local businesses.

Last week a local businessperson told me, “I don’t have to advertise now, we’re plenty busy.”

I replied, “But your customers have a buying need now, and your competitors are marketing hard to gobble up the business, leaving you with much smaller piece of the pie.”

Sure, most of the local businesses, especially those who sell primarily to the general public instead of businesses, are typically more busy now than they are at non-holiday times. But I think they are marketing parasites. The holidays are bringing them customers anyhow and they feed off of this traffic instead of creating compelling reasons for the public to come to them instead of their competition. But their competitors, by promoting hard, get far greater share of the market leaving just leftovers for the small, local business.

Marketing more now to sell more in this peak season makes real sense, because that increased cash flow will help sustain businesses during the slower periods where there isn’t a huge cultural reason creating need for people to buy.

It isn’t too late to take advantage of this holiday season. OK, maybe you’ve missed Thanksgiving, but you still have time to promote for the last-minute pre-Christmas rush, the post-Christmas sale, the New Year’s celebration – and we can’t forget the Super Bowl festivities.

So take a few moments, determine what promotions will draw more people, define your best prospects, determine the best way to reach them and go for it. They want and need for your products and services now. They will buy them somewhere. Instead of being a marketing parasite, promote your business and gobble up some sales this holiday season.


Opinions are solely the writer's. Larry Galler, of Larry Galler & Associates, is a marketing and management consultant for small and mid-size companies. Join Galler on a “Lunch with Larry” conference call, an interactive live hour on Nov. 21. The subject will be “Delegation is the First Step to Implementation.” For connection information send an email to and put “Lunch” in the subject line.

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