All the good marketing tactics are used up. They’ve been wasted on bargain aluminum siding, gym membership sweepstakes, and tanning salon offers.
All those beautiful tactics. How can I use the same tactics on you that someone else uses to promote a stuffing?
I’m exploding with services for you, but I can’t use the tactics.
I’m trying to determine which marketing tactics to use build awareness of my services among potential clients. It has been a bear coming up with a delivery method that doesn’t contribute the “clutter” and “noise” of marketing. A method that isn’t “used up.”
While I’m deciding the method I shall use, I thought I’d share my criteria with you… the thought process.
This tactic will…
Not just personalized – I don’t mean it will have their name on it. I mean “individualized.” That I’ve done the work to understand who they are and their role in their business.
I think of this more like the way I’d write a cover letter to accompany my resume. I’ve researched the company. I understand their business. I know what type of people they hire and their culture. I understand the way they do business.
Immediately Add Value
Something that adds value, that the recipient will find helpful – today – in their job. I want it to be worth their while to take a look at what they’ve received from me.
Something that stands out from the rest of the ads and pitches and direct mail and spam this person already receives.
I want to ensure I’m worth their notice. Maybe provide a pleasant surprise. Something they’ll share with their co-workers, bring to the next weekly meeting and share with their team.
Maybe I can even provide something so remarkable, they will keep it on their desk at work or pin it to their bulletin board.
Be Appropriate & Relevant
It needs to be a tactic that is appropriate for your brand to give and for their brand to receive. A stripper-gram sent to a priest? Attention-getting? Yes. Appropriate? No. Plus, this idea could get me sent to hell.
It also needs to have useful context – that is – be relevant. Sending an “open your windshield repair franchise” pitch to the CEO of a company is probably not relevant.
The Resource When They Need It
If I do my research, I may find that – because of the new acquisition – the company could use my services at this moment. That’s relevant.
However, the chances of arriving the <i>very</i moment a potential customer needs you is a challenge.
Although, in black-and-white movies, men were always ready with a light when the leading lady reached for a cigarette. I’m sure there’s a marketing lesson in ‘how to watch for when the lady reaches for her purse.’
I’m sorry – I stray…
What I was saying… Since it isn’t always possible to appear exactly when the potential customer needs you… Provide access to “you the solution” for when they are “customer with a problem.”
A good example is the snow shovel for the Northeast of the United States. Before the first big snow, I wonder how many homes had snow shovels. I wonder how many cars had snow shovels in their trunks.
Then, when the second snow came – after you had access to a shovel… How terrific was it not to have your car stranded because you didn’t have the tool to shovel yourself out.
How can I be the shovel for you, ready when you need it?
This tactic won’t…
Be A Trick
I could easily deliver my brochure along with a dozen roses via the local florist. Who doesn’t like flowers? Who skips reading the card? Instead of a card – I could include my sale pitch.
Okay, now what? All I’ve done is tricked the recipient into reading my pitch. Sure they received some nice flowers – but how is that relevant? (Unless I’m a florist or sell garden supplies).
All I’ve accomplished is ruining the act of receiving flowers for this person. Another tactic used up. Furthermore, if you’re sneaky in getting business, I imagine you’re sneaky in doing business. Not good.
Be Spam – (Hopefully)
To me spam is unrequested, unwanted, unneeded information. If I properly do my homework, I shouldn’t be ‘unneeded.’ The potential customer decides if you’re wanted. And, being “unrequested” is only a problem if you’re not needed or wanted.
Affective vs. Effective
You might have thought the headline for this article contained a typo. “Affective” instead of “Effective.” The definition of “effect” says – change that is a result or consequence of an action. That’s fine. But, the definition for “affect” states – have an effect on; make a difference to. That’s what we should strive for – not just a consequence, rather… to make a difference.
What’s Your Experience?
I would love your reactions and feedback. Am I missing something? What would Seth Godin recommend? What has proven successful for you, for your business?
Inspiration For This Post
One of my all-time favorite movies is Roxanne, written by and starring Steve Martin. One of my favorite scenes from that movie is when, Steve’s character, C.D., is wooing the main female character, Roxanne (played by Daryl Hannah).
As C.D. stands Romeo-style beneath Roxanne’s window he tries to find the words – the right superlatives – to express his love for her. But he struggles, as “all the words are used up.” They’ve become too commonplace, over used and throw-away.
C.D. …Words! They’re all used up. They’re hard to say. They’ve all been wasted on shampoo commercials and the ads and the flavorings. All those beautiful words. I mean, how can you love a floor wax? How can you love a diaper? How can I use the same words about you that someone else uses about a stuffing? I’m exploding with love for you, and I can’t use the word.
…Words! They’re all used up. They’re hard to say. They’ve all been wasted on shampoo commercials and the ads and the flavorings.
All those beautiful words.
I mean, how can you love a floor wax? How can you love a diaper?
How can I use the same words about you that someone else uses about a stuffing?
I’m exploding with love for you, and I can’t use the word.