In your business marketing, what time frame are you targeting? You’re likely thinking that the right answer is “now” (you want your audience to see the message now and take action immediately), but not all offerings have the same time frame.
Is your audience facing a burning problem now? Perhaps they’re facing a medical or financial crisis that’s taking all of their attention. Of they just woke up and suddenly realized that they have a problem that absolutely positively must be solved by the end of the day. The audience of now is the most ripe to take action immediately, since your solution removes the pain or worry from their life. It’s the quick-fix they desperately need.
But what if the problem is coming up, perhaps tomorrow or next year? Your audience isn’t nearly in the same rush to solve the problem. They have time to weigh their options, do lots of research, and in some cases simply hope the problem resolves itself without taking action. Your marketing message for an upcoming crisis is best framed by contrasting the picture of the world with and without the problem, so people can understand what the future may hold for them. You want people to proactively solve their problems sooner.
And what if the problem already happened, and people are still feeling the ramifications of it today (and perhaps into the future)? You need to instead give them a reason to fix the problem. But you must first realize that the unresolved problem may not be critical to their life. If it was, they’d likely have fixed it by now. You need to focus your message on the cost for continuing to delay the fix: nagging worry, upcoming fear, distraction, or missed opportunities.
While we all want our prospective customers to want what we’re selling now, for the most effective results, we need to work with their time frame.