Marketing 101

? You know how wonderful your product is.
? You know how great a value it is.
? If people could only hear about it, you think, the product would sell itself.

Communicating your offering to potential customers is marketing. The mistake people make is by simply showing the product (in a flyer, spec sheet, web site, etc.) that it will convince people to purchase it. Theodore Levitt (Harvard Business School) said: “People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill. They want a quarter-inch hole!”

It’s hard to change your perspective (from selling drills) to focus on the dis-interested potential customer (who wants a hole). How do you get their attention?

Here are three key questions your marketing materials need to address:

  1. What problem does your product solve?
  2. Why should they believe you?
  3. Why should they care?

Let’s take an example of Janet, who makes earrings. The earrings are beautiful. Her friends love them. People ask about them when she wears them around town. How does she market them?

  1. What problem does her product solve? Janet’s earrings allow the wearer to express their individuality, since each pair of earrings are unique. They are affordably priced.
  2. Why should they believe her? Besides showing a gallery of people wearing her creations, she should seek out testimonials of how people feel when they wear them.
  3. Why should they care? People primarily care about 3 things: money, relationship, or health. Janet’s earrings are relatively inexpensive ($19.95/pair) [money]. Janet’s earrings are made of hypo-allergenic materials, avoiding ear infections [health]. People that wear her earrings feel more attractive and if you feel more attractive, you are more attractive to others [relationship].

What could be some of her simple marketing messages?

  • Unique earrings affordably priced. [money]
  • Feel more attractive for $19.95 [relationship& money]
  • Earrings that people notice. [relationship]
  • You’re unique. Are your earrings? [relationship]
  • What does your earrings say about you? [relationship]
  • Earrings that are good for your body [health]

The right message is the one that works in the niche she’s focusing on, since each niche has different priorities of money, relationship, and health.

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