I see it too often and it breaks my heart. Aspiring and passionate entrepreneurs and business owners who try to “get” marketing. Unfortunately, they have it all wrong. Well, most of them (99% in my opinion) out there think marketing is just marketing.Marketing is not marketing.Marketing is not branding.Neither is advertising.Marketing is about response.I’ll say it again… Marketing is all about response.Without expecting (and feeling confident you’ll get) a response from your marketing efforts… you’re wasting your time and effort.Don’t get me wrong – there is a place for branding and in some cases advertising (if the goal of advertising like PPC ads is to get a response) – but it comes nowhere near the importance of direct response marketing. Direct response marketing is the only type of marketing that will actually yield sales and results in your business.In other words… Direct response marketing is what drives the success (or failure) of your business.Let me explain why this is so important.Your marketing efforts MUST (I repeat, MUST) focus on getting a response – an action from the prospect – because it’s the pre-cursor to getting a sale or getting an opt-in or anything else that drives the results of your business upward.That’s when everything else (sales, customer service, etc.) is easy because your marketing has done most of the hard work – finding, educating, and nurturing your people so they take the desired action you want them to take.It’s about action… And every marketing effort you deliver (an email, video, sales letter, direct mail piece, social media update, etc.) should be 100% focused on having the prospect take action. And I don’t mean an action like they get this warm fuzzy feeling of “oh, that was pretty cool” and do nothing about it. I’m talking action here in the form of an opt-in to your list; they call you; they click the Add to Cart button and buy from you; they share your message or product with friends, etc.Too many get it wrong. They focus on their product or their service and pay so little attention to the marketing effort needed to get that product or service to the people who need it most. Don’t get me wrong – you have to have a kick-ass product or service. It’s a given in my book because if that’s not the case and your stuff can’t 100% genuinely help someone and add a ton of value – you shouldn’t be out there in the first place.Target a specific niche or market when your marketing message can get a response. To the point where you feel confident enough where you can almost feel like you’re guaranteed to get a response.Think of it like this: Don’t fish in the entire ocean using generic bait. Fish for mackerel in the area of the ocean where mackerel hang out and use mackerel bait they want. You should think about your marketing in the same way. Identify and define the peeps in your niche, find where they are and where they hang out, and then develop the marketing that will get you the response from them that you want.One last word of advice: Never delegate marketing. It’s like the rule of never delegate the checkbook in your business. You can delegate certain aspects of your marketing (like the technology, implementation, etc.) but never, ever delegate your marketing efforts. It’s the lifeline of your business.Until next time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!