The traditional mindset of marketing has been to tell your audience about your product or services. This mindset has quickly shifted as consumers are bombarded with more and more advertising. Now, it’s all about focusing on the consumer and how you can benefit them.
Think about the advertising that resonates with you. Isn’t it generally focused on making your life better?
Don’t worry, we’ve all been caught talking about ourselves. Here are some ways you can shift your messaging to be centered around your audience.
Solve their problems.
Why does anyone buy a product or use a service? To solve a problem. I need that part. I don’t know how to change my oil. I want to spend less on car insurance.
This is an easy one to implement.
First, take a look at what your audience’s needs are. Ask yourself: why do my current customers use me? Next, match up the benefits of your product/service to meet these needs. Then, craft your messaging to position yourself as the solution.
Use their language.
Every industry has their own set of jargon. It’s important to keep in mind that your audience may have little to no experience with your industry. Think about how they speak, what their knowledge level is, and what is important to them. If you were trying to sell high-end pens, you wouldn’t call it a carpal pressure-reducing, spherical-focused, permanent ink applicator. You’d call it a pen!
The goal is to get the main message across as concisely as possible. While your service may be highly technical, find a way to explain it so everyone will understand. Don’t be overly concerned with being letter-to-letter accurate. You can get into specifics once the lead is in your sales funnel. Obviously, you shouldn’t lie or be misleading. Just keep it simple. For a starting place, use the barbecue test. How would you explain your product/service to a random person at a barbecue in two sentences or less?
A great example of this is the Apple Watch. In truth, this product isn’t a watch at all. It’s a wearable smartphone extension. Apple distilled the messaging down to the simplest point: a watch that does lots of stuff.
Truly building your marketing around your potential customer means that you have to create value for them right away. Offering incentives to take action yields more results and shows you want to help your customers, not just sell them.
Incentives also keep your audience connected to your brand. If you are offering deals, users are more likely to stay subscribed to e-newsletter, mailing, and social accounts. You have to give to get.
The retail industry has mastered this art. Just look at Black Friday. Crazy deals bring people in the door so they can miss out on the cheap TV and end up walking out with 5 full priced items. It really works. Wouldn’t you rather have a discount?
Put it where they’ll see it.
This one seems obvious, but is more of a struggle than you’d think. The most common mistake is thinking about the type of media you consume instead of your audience. Many times, you aren’t who you’re marketing to. Consider how your audience consumes media on a day-to-day basis.
Are they millennials who are avid social media users, or seniors who religiously read their mail?
Where marketers get hung up is, subconsciously, they want to see their ads in action. Often times this leads to incorrect placement or blowing the budget on expensive media like TV spots and/or billboard placements. Remember, it’s not important to see your ads; it’s just important to see the return.
What this customer-first philosophy boils down to is knowing your target audience and crafting your messaging. Don’t worry if you’re not an expert at this - because we are! Get in touch today to see how we can make your marketing more effective.