Midwives and doulas are great examples. One of the biggest frustrations midwives and doulas face is how to get more clients so they can sustain their amazing birth businesses.
And while there are some business development programs for birth workers, it can feel a bit yucky to think about marketing your business, when really, all you want to do is work with birthing women. Am I right?
I spent eight years of my life promoting and advocating for midwifery and doula care in the media, in politicians’ offices, at birth conferences and at community events, and understand the passion that drives midwives and doulas to set up a birth support service.
In fact, midwives and doulas are probably the most passionate people I’ve ever come across. Birth professionals eat, sleep and breathe birth. They love working with their clients, spend weeks on call waiting patiently for labor to begin and work into the wee hours of the morning to be with women through labour and childbirth.
As I write this, my mind wanders back to this time last year. I was called out to a birth at 2am New Years Day, and didn’t return home until 5am, 2 January. This is definitely not work you do for profit, lifestyle or fame. This is work you do for love.
But does that mean marketing a birth business (or any business) has to be icky?
The beauty of content marketing is that it is not icky, yucky or even markety (yes, just made that word up!).
Content Marketing is the new paradigm in marketing, and to my mind, it shouldn’t even be labeled as marketing because it is not about manipulation but about sharing information and being helpful. Here’s my definition of what content marketing is:
Sharing valuable information, thoughts and resources to inspire your ideal clients to align themselves with you.
There are plenty of other definitions out there, but the reason I like this one, is because it includes the word inspire.
Rather than thinking in terms of getting more leads, followers or fans, think about how you can inspire, inform and empower.
When you offer truly helpful and insightful content, it is magnetising, but you do need a system in place to ensure that your efforts are not in vain.
The reason I am highlighting midwives and doulas in this post is not to boost my SEO or to boost my doula practice, but to highlight this:
When we don’t effectively promote our businesses, we reach and serve fewer clients. As a doula, that translates to more women having difficult, disappointing or traumatic births.
The way to counter that?
Put a system in place that works to educate, inform and inspire your ideal clients to work with you.
When you work in a field that literally transforms lives and supports women through the most pivotal life experience they will have, you have a vastly different perspective on “marketing.” May this article inspire you to think differently about how you put yourself and your business out there in 2013.
[tweetherder]Ask yourself: What is the impact of not reaching and serving my ideal clients?[/tweetherder]
Let this question be motivation for you to start connecting more effectively with those who need you the most.
Happy New Year!