“So… how you doin?”
If you watched the show Friends, you heard this line from Joey many times, and you saw how unsuccessful it was with the target audience.
But what if your company’s marketing is having the same effect?
As a business, we are often too worried about our own self-image, our own self-interest, and our own capabilities that we forget about what our clients really need.
The key question is you need to ask is, how ARE they doing?
Instead of looking at yourself, become a student of your client. Find out their wants, their needs, their hopes, their fears. Take the focus off you, and figure out how you can create solutions for them.
The irony of great marketing is: It’s not about you. When you do it right, you’re not trying to make yourself look good. You’re just the guide to help others achieve their goals and dreams.
It reminds me of the story that Gay Zenola MacLaren shared in her memoir, about a chance encounter with Mark Twain:
He opened the door for me himself. As we said good-bye, he put his fingers lightly under my chin and lifted my head up so that my eyes met his.
“Little girl,” he said earnestly, “keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.”
At BOS Media Group, we believe that’s how digital marketing should work – it’s about making others feel that they can achieve greatness.
Maybe it’s time to re-think marketing. Know your audience, position your company to serve those needs, and make them the hero.
Please let us know if there’s anything we can do to help you shine!
In my last blog, I challenged you to come up with your worst idea. Hopefully, that opened up your mind to some new creative possibilities, but as you may have noticed: bad ideas don’t just automatically become a business (with the exception of the Shakeweight, of course).
The biggest question you need to ask if you want to turn your creativity into business is:
What problem are you solving?
It sounds simple, but most people don’t know how to answer this. You might have a product or service that starts doing well, but if you don’t know why, you won’t know how to build on the success.
You should be able to state this in a few words, or as Donald Miller calls it, “a one-liner” – a sentence that connects a pain point that people experience, and how your idea could resolve it.
Take a second to think about it: Where do you see someone having a problem? How could you address it?
Whether it’s a small idea to implement in your current business or a big idea for a new business, look around – the next great innovation might be right in front of you.
And that’s where flossing comes in.
NO, this isn’t about how people want to work with BOS Media Group because of my clean teeth (although obviously, it doesn’t hurt).
This is about a principle I once heard about how to develop healthy dental hygiene: if you’re currently not in the habit of flossing regularly, start by just committing to flossing ONE TOOTH.
It sounds weird, but you might be surprised – by lowering the commitment level, it removes barriers in your mind and increases your chance of success. One tooth is so easy, we don’t mind doing another, and before you know the small changes are big.
Which brings us back to your business. Start small. Look for a problem to solve. And please, let me know if there’s anything I can do to help you turn it into a business.
Some of the most powerful hours of television are aired during the olympics. Not only do they cover the footage of the neck-to-neck competitions and the victory celebrations, but mostly, they focus on the back stories of the featured athletes and what they’ve overcome to be the best in the world. Their stories have power. They inspire, motivate and even challenge us. These background stories also help us emotionally connect, and I often find myself rooting for someone because I feel like I know them.
Marketing is about connecting with your audience. And in order to connect with your audience, stories must be told. Here’s an example of an iphone commercial that uses this story-telling strategy to engage with the audience emotionally. Rather than highlighting the features and functions of the iphone, they simply tell a holiday story from a misunderstood teen expressing his love for the family through technology that the iphone offers. Brilliant!
Google uses the same strategy and emphasizes the importance of family rather than the product itself by showing how a father connects all of google’s technology and tools for his child.
So, what does that mean for us? We don’t have an advertising budget like Apple or Google to create engaging and beautiful videos which emotionally connect the audience to a brand. But what we do have are the stories to cultivate client loyalty and to continue to attract new clients into our business. Craft your stories and share them on your company blog, post them on social media, email blast them through your newsletter or tell them during your seminars, other marketing functions, and/or sales meetings. Also, keep in mind the following 3 types of stories that you can share to effectively gain trust and loyalty.
Your customers’ stories: Just like your own story, your client also has a story. Ask permission to share the story of how your product or service helped them overcome their challenges. These stories will attract other companies facing similar challenges, and they will more likely work with you.
Educational stories: Use stories to educate and explain concepts and strategies to your clients. Use your own personal examples or analogies. It’s what people will remember and resinate with.
Your own personal story: Tell your own personal story. Share how your company was birthed and what brought you into the industry. Share your failures and your pivotal moments of success. Be authentic and even vulnerable to really get the people to know you. They will learn to trust you as you share your experiences, failures, and life lessons along the way.