“Growth is never by mere chance; it is the result of forces working together.”

— James Cash Penney, founder, JC Penney

Most businesses start with an idea, a spark of excitement and then a leap. Many of these businesses struggle and eventually fail but some experience tremendous success and grow beyond their wildest dreams.

How can an idea, a spark of excitement and a leap lead to such dramatically different results?

The answer is rather simple….marketing.

In his book, “Guerrilla Marketing,” Jay Conrad Levinson describes marketing as, “the art of getting people to change their minds – or to maintain their mindsets if they’re already inclined to do business with you.”

Your ability to get people to switch brands or purchase a product or service that they’ve never used before that will determine whether you just “barely survive” or “thrive” as a business.

A business without revenue is really just a hobby and businesses need customers to bring in revenue.

What do you do when your business isn’t growing? You get more customers. How do you get more customers? Better marketing.

You must become OBSESSED with customer service which, when you look at the big picture is a major part of the marketing mix. Marketing is not only the ability to get new customers, it is also the ability to keep the customers that you already have. Exceptional customer service will keep your current customers happy, and will also give them a reason to tell their friends and family about your business.

The best way to take your business from barely surviving to thriving is to, in the words of marketing guru, Seth Godin, “delight” your customers. Because at the end of the day marketing is really all about creating “delight.”