If I could count the number of times people feel compelled to tell me that they “tried advertising” but it didn’t work… I’d be able to move up retirement. Does this happen? Certainly it does. Does this mean advertising doesn’t work? No … what it means is that many people don’t understand marketing and how to use advertising to maintain awareness, and what to do with the awareness they get.
Branding & Loyalty
Recent studies are debunking the idea of brand loyalty. It turns out we are all pretty fickle. What does that mean to us as business people?
- It means that we need to keep getting the word out.
- It means that we need to have a ‘better mousetrap.”
- It means that “process” is huge – having a plan.
- It means that we need to extend our reach – because it is less important that we talk only to our ‘loyal’ customers and more important that we talk to MORE customers.
So if the top 10% doesn’t and won’t always deliver 80% of your business dependably, what do you do?
And why are people so fickle?
Well, for many reasons, marketing has a bad name. So people don’t believe your ad.
First let’s look at why advertising doesn’t work.
So you had the radio station write some ads for you. They do that for free … the creative part … in exchange for you buying space. The person writing the ad depends on the sales person to tell them what they should say. And some are really good. Some are ok. And some don’t even get what you do.
- SOME ADVERTISING IS JUST BAD.
- MAYBE IT DIDN’T DIFFERENTIATE YOU So you need to get what you do. So you can tell the station. If you can’t successfuly communicate it, they can’t advertise it.
- LACK OF MEMORABILTY Perhaps your ad wasn’t unique, so it just sounded just like other people’s ads.
- WRONG TARGET It could be that your target customer just doesn’t listen to that station / read that paper / watch that TV show.
- TOO MUCH COMPETITION You have so much competition that prospects simply can’t keep all the names in their head … so they just pick the first one they find at their moment of need.
But some people heard your ad, they looked you up, they thought about using you.
What happened to those people?
Consumers are overwhelmed.
We are all overwhelmed with information, media ads, online find-me-follow me ads, and on and on.
- Think of yourself … how do you sort through all of the noise to find the best person.
- We all know it isn’t necessarily the loudest.
- It also isn’t always the person or company with the best ads.
- It isn’t the best reviews. (Because people get paid to review.)
- It isn’t the worst reviews. (Because competitors jump in and give bad reviews to products or businesses.)
Advertising has low credibility – people have stopped believing it.
Why? Let’s start with advertising that doesn’t match reality.
In fact, we all know it … ads lie.
- Businesses want to put their business in the best light, so they say what they think will do that, regardless of if it is true.
- Then when people experience their business they find it is nothing like that.
- This happens over and over again.
- People stop believing advertising.
- This undermines the credibility of advertising.
We really don’t just run and ad and make a sale.
It is usually not one thing – it is always a series of things that all work together to get a sale.
Even when you get a referral. That person will go look at your website. They may ask some other people about you. They might read testimonials. All this before they meet with you.
If you ran an ad and got low results, my guess is that you don’t have plan to nurture these people.
- Your ad wasn’t built on a plan.
- You didn’t have a strategy to build a relationship with them.
- You didn’t have the means to capture their info.
- You didn’t continue to educate, inform, remind, motivate and incentivize.
- You didn’t send out special offers close to the time or season when the purchase would take place.
- Therefore, you missed out on that moment when they were focused on you.
- You let them go onto another ‘guy’ … maybe not as good of option as you are.
Here are the things I think make a difference:
- A consistant, honest brand.
- A clear message.
- Intriguing creativity with stopping power.
- A consistent PLAN to interest, educate, differentiate, and ask for a sale.
- If you are in direct sales, it needs to be a plan to get you in front of more people.