When preparing your marketing and advertising plan, your very first question should be: Who do I need to talk to? The answer to this question will push you in the right direction when it comes to WHAT your message should be, and WHERE your message should go.
I believe that with all the marketing metrics and corporate “please-spend-your-money-because-you-can’t-understand-this” mentality has caused us to lose our focus on one very specific, very real variable — OUR GUT. It seems rather obvious that companies should measure their own messages by putting themselves in the shoes (or pants) of the consumer. This can be called The Human Sense Approach.
Here’s what I mean. No matter how awesome your company’s leather pants are, and no matter what the promotional price offering is — I’m simply the wrong guy. If you spend one dollar trying to convince me otherwise, you’ve just lost a dollar. Unfortunately, companies continue to lose millions of dollars talking to masses of people who are NOT going to purchase their goods or services.
Because of this truth, marketing consultants are hired for lots of dollar signs and digits to explain who the audience is. Really? You serious? Do you really need someone to tell you what your customers look like? I’m saving you thou$ands right now. Ask yourself: Who is one of our best, longest-survived, most enthusiastic customer or client? How did they get to us? Would THEY like this message?
Do you remember going into business? If you are the middle man, please go and have a meeting with one of the company founders. Who did they start this business to help? You simply can’t talk the nerd into the leather pants. (well — maybe on the weekends — in private…. in which case advertising online might be the right approach…ANYWAY)
So now you remember WHO your best prospect is. Great. Now — Where are they? If they are hanging out in biker bars, then it seems foolish that you’d advertise in the state news rag. What about advertising in one of those hot/new/trendy/cool/glossy publications? NOPE. Where ARE the bikers? WHERE is the audience? Let’s say they are on their motorcycles. Then a medium like billboards might be a thought. (we’ll discuss compelling them to act on your message another day)
It’s likely they’d be in biker bars (whatever that means). So maybe, just maybe, you should find a way to get your message into one of those venues. Maybe your marketing dollars would be better spent on custom light fixtures that hang over pool tables. Maybe you invest in branding those little pool chalk cubes. Maybe you etch your logo onto beer mugs and give them away in places where our biker friends are sure to show. The possibilities are endless.
The point is that you are at least talking to the right person. I’m not sure what some “high level” marketing metrics genius would say about this — and I’m not sure that I care. Doesn’t it just make perfect Human Sense that you’d be in a better position to succeed if your message was in front of the right person in the right place? Now, we are cooking with fire.
Messaging follows a similar ideology to me — but we’ll discuss that later. Right now let’s just relax in the biker bar for a bit.