A marketing program that doesn't understand and respect the audience's needs, concerns and journey won't connect. So it won't generate sales.
How do you ensure your marketing speaks to your audience? Here are 7 things you can do to develop a powerful, respectful marketing program.
- Do your homework. Study your customers. Find out what that they like. What they do. What they want and need. What's important to them. You can get this from surveys and interviews. Sales people and customer service folks are sources of insight. Maybe there are articles you can read.
- Apply what you learn. Analyze the information you gather to find where your product/service's benefits meet a need or solve a challenge. That intersection of audience need and product benefit is where you'll find your core marketing message.
- Be interesting. You've identified a message. That's great, but the work's not done. Since you can't bore someone into buying, you need to grab attention. Humor could do the trick. Or an intriguing headline. Or an eye-catching presentation. Test the best alternatives to see what connects with the audience.
- Be engaging. The very best marketing doesn't sound like marketing. It sounds like one person talking to another. A conversation. You can only achieve this if you really understand your audience.
- Tell the truth. Folks are good at sniffing out untruths. And they're suspicious of hype. Why risk ruining your reputation with even a small fabrication?
- Be persuasive, not pushy. You have a good story to tell, so tell it. If you get too in-you-face, though, you may get pushed back. Gentle persuasion usually works better than a hard sell approach.
- Invite feedback. Check with your audience to see how you're doing. What you learn can inform future marketing and make your program better.
Some companies think marketing is about touting product features. But really, great marketing is built on audience needs and wants. So why not take the time to know your audience? Show some respect for their experience, connect your product to their needs, and reap the rewards (sales, that is)!