I was watching an old movie last night. It was a western. In the movie, a man was looking for a doctor. He finally found one, but the doctor was also the town veterinarian and dentist. It reminded me of the dark ages, when the town barber was also the town doctor, dentist, surgeon, veterinarian, and more.
When I first started what would become Marketing and Creative back in 2010, my services list was very long. I was offering all sorts of things to get started. But as I went, I quickly realized some things needed to go.
Everyone has their area of expertise. I’ve been doing video production, web design, graphic design, and related stuff professionally since 1994 (at least!). I received a Bachelor’s in Communications, worked for a CBS affiliate TV station, a number one radio station and several multi-million dollar corporations providing creative and marketing related services over the years. Many times people have said to me, “Why don’t you get into fixing computers? You are good with computers right?” I know they mean well, but they have no idea what they are saying. Just because someone uses computers doesn’t mean they have any business fixing computers. By that logic, any police officer should be able to be a gunsmith.
Unfortunately, for too many people today, marketing is an add on. There isn’t really a national chain that provides marketing help to small business owners, so people are at a loss on where to get help. Into the confusion there are companies becoming “Add On-ers”.
The UPS store now has this list of services on its web site:

  • Accounting & Bookkeeping
  • Business Management
  • Communications
  • Direct Mail Solutions
  • Financial Services
  • House Accounts
  • Human Resources
  • Marketing

Wow! Business Management? Accounting? And there it is right down at the bottom there… Marketing. Gone are the days when they just deliver your packages.
Of course they aren’t alone. I’ve seen restaurant supply companies offering free menus and web sites, IT companies offering graphic design and marketing services, training companies offering IT and marketing services, and much more. And to be fair, some of these companies may provide great services in one (or more) areas. But most of the time, I can’t help feeling like it might be a medieval barber/dentist situation.