I want to talk about an aspect of marketing your small business that is often overlooked, but oh so huge in determining the overall success of your small business.The aspect — practicing what you preach.So, what exactly do I mean by this? Well, too often I see small business owners who don’t practice what they preach in their services, their beliefs about their business, what they do for their own small business, what they’re willing to spend for a service and on and on.Not practicing what you preach leads to in-congruency — whether conscious or subconscious — and that in-congruency will hinder the success of your small business.You’ve no doubt run into small business owners who don’t practice what they preach, right? I know I sure have. In fact, here are just a few examples that I’ve run into…An orthodontist who’s marketing like crazy to get new patients for braces, yet their teeth are horrible. They expect their clients to spend thousand and thousands of dollars getting that perfect smile all the while they look like snaggle-tooth.A divorce therapist who counsels clients on what it takes to have a long and fruitful relationship, while she has been married and divorced three times.A life or business coach who emphasizes that working with a coach will help get your affairs in order and on the right track to enjoy much success, while his life is in complete disarray and isn’t working with a coach of his own.The real estate agent who rents an apartment.The personal trainer who’s 30 pounds overweight.The interior designer who has furniture that’s 2 decades old.The financial planner who’s in massive credit card debt.What do you think when you see a small business owner who doesn’t practice what they preach? Do you trust them? Do you want to do business with them? Do you think they’re worth the price they charge? Probably not.So, my dear small business friends, the question is…are YOU practicing what YOU preach??If you answered “yes” — great! You get a gold star for the day. Keep doing what you’re doing.If you answered “no” or “not really” or “umm, yeah, well, uh sort-of, gosh, I don’t know. Jeanna quit asking me these pointed questions.” Then we’ve got some work to do. There are two main areas where you need to be absolutely sure that you are, in fact, practicing what you preach.Area #1Practice What You Preach in Your ServicesMake sure that you are taking advantage and utilizing the same services that you offer and sell to your clients.What do I mean by this?Well if you’re an acupuncturist, you’d better make darned sure that you go see an acupuncturist yourself. If you’re a business coach, you’d better be working with another business coach for your own business. If you’re an estate planning attorney, you better have a will and an estate plan of your own.Do you buy and utilize the same services that you are offering your clients? If not, then you are not practicing what you preach. If you expect others to buy the service that you offer, you’d better be willing to buy that service yourself.Area #2Practice What You Preach in What Your Willing to SpendMake sure that whatever you charge your clients for your services that you would be willing to spend the same amount if you were going to hire someone like you.So, if you’re a re-modeler and charge your clients $35,000 to remodel a guest bathroom, you’d better be willing to spend $35K to remodel your own bathroom or at the very least value your services enough to know your worth that amount. I don’t want you to miss this aspect, because it is HUGE.If you’re not willing to spend the same amount of money on the service that you charge your clients…there’s a problem. If you don’t feel that your services are really worth the amount that you’re charging…there’s even a bigger problem.Practicing what you preach is a key element in running and a successful small business! Practicing what you preach will help you market your services better and it will help you attract clients faster.Final ThoughtThe best way to build trust and integrity in your business is to practice what you preach. If a few things are off in your business, the time to change them is now. After all you are the best “evangelist” for your services, so make sure you walk your talk.