Blog: Lisa Maas

Never deny the importance of a good image. As comedian George Carlin observed, "The caterpillar does all the work but the butterfly gets all the publicity." Enter Lisa Maas, president of Publicity Works, a marketing and ad agency in Royal Oak, who will be advising businesses from a PR perspective and discussing diversification as the key to fiscal fitness.

Lisa Maas - Post 1: The Secret to Success: Diversify Your Client Base

If Metro Detroit businesses can learn anything from the current state of the economy, it will be the necessity of diversification. Detroit and the suburbs have long reveled in the status of The Motor City. For decades, a majority of our workforce invested its time and skills into building the automotive industry. In its heyday, we all prospered from this investment. It seemed every Southeast Michigan business had some connection to the success of the Big Three.

As the industry Detroiters so diligently built erodes, the current conditions reaffirm the importance of diversification. Michigan businesses can no longer afford to invest solely in a single client or industry sector if they hope to survive.

Unfortunately, the current state of the economy forces us to take a closer look at this issue. In any client service-driven business, allowing one client, organization or industry to drive your business model only serves to place you in a precarious position.

A one-dimensional business faces a constant threat that the primary client will leave – and can leave for reasons beyond your control. Such a situation promotes an inherent weakness, and places the company at serious risk. In most cases, it becomes more difficult for business owners to look at the bigger picture when they are engulfed in the day-to-day maintenance of one client and its whims.

There is a universal law that applies in business: Change is the only constant. It has to be ingrained in any successful business model or corporate structure. It must be embraced by leadership and by employees.

By accepting the forces of change and being willing to adapt to new situations and new challenges, you're opening yourself up for opportunities to grow your business and provide more value to existing clients.

At Publicity Works, our purpose is to serve our clients and help them grow their businesses. We must also consider how these clients impact our growth. With each new project or client that requires a new area of expertise, we've strengthened connections and found opportunities in new industries.

By welcoming change and making diversification a daily business practice, it is possible to weather, even thrive, regardless of the economic climate.