Home' micenet eMag : micenet February 2018 Contents I
’ve found if executives just refocus on the
basics at the start of the year, they can
create more positive change in the next 12
months than by chasing the latest
fashionable marketing trend. So let’s start
with marketing 101. When I ask seminar
delegates or business executives “what is the
purpose of business” the common answer is
“to make money”. Unfortunately that’s the
wrong answer. The purpose of business is
“to create and keep a customer, profitably”.
You cannot make a profit without first having
customers. And to have customers you have
to have something they want to buy that is
different to your competitors.
So, how can marketing help? Well, there
are only three ways your marketing can make
1 It can help you get new customers
2 It can get them to spend more with you,
3 It can help you keep them spending with
you as long as possible
There are no other ways your marketing
can make money for you.
But your marketing doesn’t occur in a
vacuum. Today, nearly all markets are more
competitive and noisier than ever. Your
marketing messages must be heard in the
relative context of the marketplace, the
category in which you do business.
To break through the clutter, you need to
understand how your customers and
prospects perceive your brand. This is why
research is so important. It helps you keep
At the beginning of the new year, Malcolm Auld reflects on some of the
basics of marketing we tend to forget when we’re caught in the daily grind.
YOU’LL MAKE MORE
MARKETING BY GOING
BACK TO BASICS
your finger on the pulse and identify insights that can be used in your marketing messages. If
you don’t know how the market perceives you and your competitors, how can you
communicate with any relevance?
How long since you spoke with your customers?
Once you understand the perceptions of the market, you can determine your key
differentiators. You want to find a benefit that differentiates you from competitors. This means
how are you perceived to be different? It does not necessarily mean you are unique. Different
and unique are not the same. Your difference can be in your positioning of your brand, not
necessarily related to product features. This is important because you are dealing with people’s
perceptions. Remember, whether you work in B2B or consumer marketing, most people buy
emotionally, but justify their purchases rationally. There are absolutely no rational reasons to buy
Jimmy Choo high heels, but there are lots of emotional reasons.
Truth in marketing is conspicuous these days
But claims of uniqueness or a specific point of difference are not believed without proof.
Demonstrate your proof with facts. Use diagrams, charts, product comparisons, testimonials and
real evidence. The truth is a powerful tool in marketing these days, as so many marketers don’t
speak it. They prefer puffery, jargon and glib generalisations to try to manufacture credibility. Many
are just too lazy or lack the intellectual fortitude to really dig into their brand and identify what makes
them different in the market. It’s why so much advertising looks similar and is generally ignored.
Consumers are incredibly cynical. And the reason is simple. Marketers have historically lied or
been deceitful in their marketing messages and claims. Marketers created the consumer
cynicism and are now paying the price with their perceived lack of credibility.
So determine the point of difference that makes you attractive to customers. Once you’ve
settled on your point of difference, communicate it in every channel you use. Make sure your
messages are consistent, from the way your salespeople present, to your literature advertising
and what is published on your website. Consistency in positioning is vital to success.
Inconsistent positioning confuses consumers. In the MICE industry, it is more often than not the
activities the delegates can enjoy at the destination rather than the conference venue or hotel
that executives perceive to be of the most value when making a decision. As a venue you need
to understand such perceptions if your marketing is going to resonate with prospects.
And of course, as I mentioned in the last article, you need to give prospects a reason to
respond to your message, which is why incentives always work. m
Check out Malcolm’s blog – www.themalcolmauldblog.com.
48 | micenet
MARKETING | MALCOLM AULD
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