(Photo by bark)
When marketing your business, are you better off showcasing yourself or your customer’s needs? It all depends on what your target audience knows and thinks about you.
Are you well-known and beloved? If so, leverage the social trust you’ve built up to showcase your new offering. If people liked what you’ve showed them previously, they’re more likely to be interested in what you’re showing them now. But be careful – if your prospective customers sense you’re “cashing out” on your name without something of benefit for them, they’ll (slowly) stop listening to you. That’s why smart celebrities are careful about lending their name for new offerings. Too many missteps and their brand value declines.
If you’re not well-known, don’t start by announcing yourself to the world. That creates a double problem for your business: first you need to educate people who you and then you need to show why people should care about what you’re saying. Instead, focus your marketing on convincing people of what you’re selling (as validated independently). Done repeatedly, you’ll then be able to step into the limelight to show why your wisdom that matters.
Here today and gone tomorrow. Make sure that your marketing leads with how people would react if you were gone tomorrow. Would they miss you or what you can do for them?
(Photo by Nahid V)
If you’re like many business owners, your mailing list isn’t well-segmented. That means that you can’t simply send a email blast to just women, or just people that have purchased from you in the last 3 months, or just people who live in a 10 mile radius of your store. But you have a new offer that you want to ensure the “right people” see. What can you do?
You make sure that the offer contains the magic words: “…For you, or for someone-you-know-who-is-the-right-person…“.
The key is that the reader of your message is likely to immediately make a judgement about your offer. If you’re selling a product to women, and the reader is a man, they’ll likely stop reading as soon as they figure out the message is not for them. Therefore, make the message apply to them as well (“For you…or for the woman that you love/know…”). That will help to frame the message as as “beneficial gift” for someone they know, which may elevate their own status.
Ideally, segment your list so you can market directly to your target market with images, language, and an offer that resonates for them. But until then, try to be logically and emotionally inclusive.
I need some catchy slogans on summer for my textile shop, preferably 2-3 words. I’ve previously used ‘Cotton Mela’, but this year, we are installing stalls for ice cream, juice, etc., in addition to offers on cotton clothes. So, I’m looking for slogans generalized to ‘cool’. Any help? The offer starts on April 1st. Thanks in advance.
Jay’s Answer: Consider “Personal Air Conditioning” or “Escape The Heat”
I have marketed office equipment, office furniture,and office supplies for 34 years. I want a title that is more in keeping with my experience and ability to improve office productivity and help decrease a companies operating costs. I want a new modern title to help my online presence.
Jay’s Answer:Office Productivity Expert (or Consultant)
I have a successful fitness/rehab facility in Ohio and wanted to get my online yoga concept up online but my work is not progressing. How do you know when something is going to work or not?
Jay’s Answer: It’s a good question, but there’s likely a lot of information that’s needed to evaluate your issues in-depth, including:
- What are your goals?
- How are you measuring results of your efforts?
- Have you been able to identify who specifically would be interested in your online classes?
- Are these the same people who would take your classes in Ohio, but can’t because they’re not nearby?
- Are people looking for a class such as what you offer?
- When they find your class, what’s their reaction?
- What’s the promise you make as a result of taking the class?
- Are people looking for solo practice or group practice?
- Is your online class the right pacing/style/format for your prospective customers?
- What are your competitors doing that’s more successful (both in content & marketing)?
(Photo by Andrew Ashton)
If your business is marketing its services to another business (B2B = Business-To-Business), it is vital to know that B2B’s needs are very different from B2C’s (Business-To-Consumer) emotional issues. Do you know the top 6 B2B needs?
- Increased Profitability. While obvious, it’s important to remember that businesses exist to make money.
- Increased Power. Business want power (influence) over their markets. Business employees seek power within their company.
- Decreased Risk. Businesses seek a “sure thing” to minimize wasted resources.
- Decreased Hassle. An business opportunity may be a sure thing that’s highly profitable, but the amount of effort to break into that market may be cost prohibitive.
- Increased Praise. While praise comes from individuals, it’s a core group individuals that create a target market. That’s why it’s important for a business to both focus on top-down (leadership/management) as well as bottom-up strategies.
- Increased Fun. Building a business takes time. The long-term motivation of money and power isn’t generally enough to guide a business owner through short-term problems. That’s why in the midst of all the work, there needs to be a vision for why people choose to come together to do great things.
Be sure that your B2B marketing is conveyed using facts (see: Marketing Foreplay), and touches upon many of a business’ “pain points”.
(Photo by studio tdes)
To build your social credibility, you’ll need to interview your customers for testimonials. But how do you do that?
First, consider letting someone other than you do it. As a business owner, you’re naturally passionate about your business and therefore naturally defensive of criticism. Someone not in leadership will likely to better ask questions dispassionately and record responses accurately.
Second, since testimonials generally convey the emotional experience of working together, it’s important to create mini-case studies about the work – not simply “How wonderful was it working with us?“. Get the details:
- Their demographic information
- What have they tried?
- What worked?
- Why did they come to you?
- How did they find you?
- How long have they been with you? What’s worked? What hasn’t?
- Who would they recommend your programs to? Why? Have they?
Finally, feature these mini-case studies throughout the year in all your marketing. See which case study works best for different types of clients, and continue to fine-tune your social credibility.
I’m preparing for interviews this week for a media associate position. I need advice on what technical questions to expect. I’m interviewing for entry level positions. The main responsibilities are day-to-day management of clients’ campaigns and reporting performance of media. I have 1 year of experience with a small full-service agency. I started as a TV media assistant, where we analyzed media performance daily and adjusted our spots weekly. Then I became the assistant print media buyer. This involved more ad trafficking and media research, but only weekly performance reporting. Please let me know what sort of questions might come up in these interviews. Thank you!
Jay’s Answer: Don’t simply wait for their questions. Do your research and ask some of your own. What have they done recently? What are they proud of? What clients have they recently lost? Won? What awards have they won or competed for? What have been the results of their efforts in the past?
I am going to start online store for my homemade crafts which includes block printed fabric, handmade vases, jewelry, bags and paper crafts. My main focus will be on Block printed fabrics. So I though of name “CHISPA” which means ‘Spark’ in spanish and in urdu/hindi it means ‘Pasting’. As block printing is about pasting wooden block designs on clothes creatively. I need suggestion mainly for tagline and for name as well as I am
still bit confused about it.
Jay’s Answer: I’m not sure about your proposed business name. If your audience doesn’t understand what the word means, then it’s basically meaningless. And if they do, the name may not be on-target. While you may be (initially) selling block printed fabrics, prospective customers aren’t necessarily looking for block printed – they’re looking something beautiful and/or functional. You’ll want to pick a name (and/or tagline) based on the benefit you offer, not the product you offer.
We are a small investment firm. Just opened a new office in an area where we are not as well known. We had one large open house primarily for clients in that area. We do not do a lot of print advertising or billboards. Other then the individual brokers gradually networking to build their lists, is there any other ideas to gain greater awareness of a new office in a new area? The branch thinks another open house would work but I am not so certain unless there is a huge draw i.e.athlete and autographs, etc.
Jay’s Answer: Instead of an open house meet-and-greet, why not offer a series of classes for different audiences: children, new parents, seniors, newlyweds, etc.? Make the classes not about selling, but about truly empowering the attendees to understand more about their finances and future.