“Keep from crippling your business with these 20 marketing mistakes “Mistake number four: Not taking massive action. An old Chinese proverb goes something like this–Confucius say: “Hungry man sitting with mouth open waiting for roast duck to fly in have a long wait”.
Hey this is Dave Negri with Contractor’s Secret Weapon. We’re still continue our series “Keep from crippling your business with these 20 marketing mistakes”. Today we are on day three. So why am I doing these series on these marketing mistakes? I don’t want you to make the same mistakes I did. These are painful mistakes that I’ve gone through in my past 26 27 years.
And I want you to have a better start, a better life and a good finish — a good ending to your business.
Mistake number four: Not taking massive action. An old Chinese proverb goes something like this–Confucius say: “Hungry man sitting with mouth open waiting for roast duck to fly in have a long wait”. So, it is with marketing. So many businesses have great ideas and plans, but they fail to take action. They’re waiting for things to be just right before they do anything. To some extent, that’s understandable. But you’re not going to get the perfect marketing piece. You need to, like we said before, a test and measure but considering that most businesses– especially small businesses– are tied for money. They want to make sure that their advertising pieces are laid out just right. The message is clear and that they’re getting the very best deal on the advertising rates. Or they’re getting the biggest bang for their buck in the market conditions are favorable and make no mistakes.
All of these things are important. They are very important but it’s critical that we don’t get paralyzed into not taking action because of them. So, let’s take a look at Apple Computer for instance. Back when Apple was first getting off the ground, articles were written about them and how they were–they use the ready aim fire–well actually the ready fire aim approach–and that’s is they get the product ready. It wasn’t perfect. They fired they got it out into the marketplace. They aimed, listened to the customer feedback and made the modifications and got back out there again. This is no different from the way many small– even mid-sized businesses run their marketing campaigns today.
They get an ad a promotional letter or campaign ready. They sit back and analyze it for months and then they may or may not actually run it for whatever the reason it could be.
No one’s buying now it’s the holidays. Well that’s the misnomer. Some of my best contracts have been during the holidays.
So, what holds people back? Why don’t they take the chance? Why don’t I take the chance when I was younger? Why don’t you take the chance now? Why not get the ad out there and see what happens? That’s what Apple Computer did. Who knows? Maybe the ad or the promotion will be successful, maybe it won’t. But they will never know unless they tested to see it. If they continue to wait and wait and wait, Apple would not be in the position they are today. Because they acted upon everything that they did.
So, I’m not advocating wisely spending money and blindly running ads promotions just to see if they’ll work or not. You certainly must put a lot of thought into the market that you want to target.
The message that you’re going to send to them and the offer that you’re going to make to them. This makes careful and calculated consideration. But any business–even your business, even my business–can learn exactly what Apple Computer found out–that the market will tell you if your product is right or wrong for them and whether or not your prices are too high. And they’ll tell you exactly what you need to do to make it saleable to them. Not only that as a bonus so tell exactly how much to charge for. Isn’t that amazing? So, how do they do that? You ask. It’s simple. When you run an ad a promotion,
if a lot of people respond to take you up on your offer, it’s obviously work. If the response was too great, it means that your offer was way too good and your prices were probably too low. On the other hand, if you get no or very few responses, then something is wrong. Either your marketing went to the wrong target, the message you’re sending it’s not clear, and the offer that you have made isn’t attractive enough for them to justify parting with their money. The price could be too high. But if you conceptualize the ad design it lay it out and spend months on and analyzing, you won’t learn nothing. Except that your procrastination has cost you a lot of unnecessary time and a lot–a lot of missed income.
Better to get the ad out in the marketplace and find out if it works or if it needs improvement. Don’t second guess it. Let your market evaluate it for you and tell you what corrections that need to be made but do it carefully–testing as we discussed earlier.
Once you find out what works and take massive action, roll your ad or a mailing can’t pay out and let it bring you the profits you’ve worked so hard to earn. OK, number 5–
Marketing mistake number 5: Using institutional or image advertising.
Okay, what is advertising? It’s simply a process of letting others know about your product or service. Institutional or image advertising is a type of advertising that most companies–large and small–use most often. Not really good, not really bad. Well, this type of advertising can alert the market to the fact that a product exists. It does very little to create a desire in the minds of the buying public to own the product or at least inquire more information concerning the product or services. So, it’s sort of like image advertising. Well, what is that? It’s sort of like Coke–you know Coke is they show you the bottle.
People want it you think they’re going to drink it but they spend billions of dollars in marketing over the years.
So, a better, more effective cost-efficient form of advertising is called “Direct response advertising” and we talk a lot about this a lot. The idea behind this type of marketing and promotion is to get the reader or the viewer looking at your ad to take some specific action. Either they make a call, they pay a visit to the website, or where the product or service can be seen or purchased. And perhaps, I’ll in a reply. So, you want to get them to react to your marketing. But when you consider the fact that your client or prospect couldn’t care less about your company, or the fact that you want to sell them something, that adds up to a big waste of time. Makes waste of your money, and money that can be utilized to other places.
It’s true that institutional or image advertising can be build brand awareness and that’s okay for large corporations who have millions and millions of dollars to spend but you don’t have that. Most small or medium sized businesses simply can’t afford to spend advertising that way. You need instant results or as close to it as possible. So, most institutional advertising is not customer focused and instead, it promotes how great the company are paying for the ad is. And since there’s no call to action,
at best the results of that kind of advertising produces–are bad or deferred results.
For the most part, people don’t care how great your company is and we’ve said this over and over and over again. They really care more about what particular product or service that she can do for them. Remember the old WIIFM? What’s in It For Me? Well, that’s all about direct marketing–direct response marketing. You see, customers have their own wants and needs that want to be satisfied. They will only buy what you’re offering if you can show them how your product or your service satisfies those wants and needs. That’s where direct response advertising and marketing comes in.
So–the type of advertising this type of advertising actually shows the viewer, the reader — the advantages of your product, the advantage of your service. When it can provide for them let them know exactly what step they must take it to either get the product or service or to get more information about it. So, it’s designed to present enough information, to give a compelling immediate reason for the viewer of the ad to take a specific action.
So, to tend–that to send a coupon: pick up the phone and call an order for more information or to stop by your place of business. Well, for most of us are not going to stop by our place unless you’ve got a showroom. But most contractors don’t, but some do. So, direct response marketing will bring in more response, more inquires, more dollars than any other type of advertising or marketing and is trackable–it is measurable.
You know exactly where your money’s going and if it works or not. That is you’ll be able to quantify exactly how many dollars you pay for marketing efforts, how much does it cost for lead, how much is the cost for sale. You know, this is where your results come from. So, direct response advertising is simply the most effective type of marketing for most businesses and effectively use can bring in immediate profits to your bottom line. It isn’t that what we’re all looking for?
So, moving right along.
Marketing Mistake Number 6: Not identifying your ideal or your target market.
And if you know me, I’m really–really hot about target market and I don’t waste your time or your money by going elsewhere. Because those are the people who are spending money with you.
So, the question is: “Who do you market to?” Should you be marketing to the same people?
Are all the people the same types of people? If so, was it a plan to strategy? If they’re not the same, then why aren’t they the same? See, your target needs to be really well-defined and you can go back to some of the other podcasts we had.
Actually, a whole series on just the target market can go back to that and you’ll find out more about target market. So, you see you, can have the very best product or best service on the planet. You can have the most attractive offer to the lowest price, lots of bonus, personal attention and the best service available. But, if you offer the wrong package to the wrong market, guess what? That marketing is going to fail. On the other hand, what if your package or your total offer isn’t that good? Let’s say it’s just average. Let’s also assume that your prices are not the lowest but they’re at least in the ballpark.
You’ve really got nothing special that the rest of your competition can’t offer. But if you have a great list to market to–a well-qualified, highly motivated prospects with the authority and the ability to buy, and many case home owners, and who’s– who’s your target on the homeowners. Most of the time it’s the women. Now with that kind of market you just about can’t lose. Target your marketing efforts to the right people can make or break the entire advertising or the marketing campaign.
And if you’re a small businessman, you can’t afford to have that happen too many times because it will drive you right out of business. One of the best ways to make sure that your marketing is to the right group is to go back over your records and listen. Create that list of your best customers, your best past clients. You know the people in that group and these are the ones or the right people to market to because they’ve purchased from you before. You want to know who their neighbors are, who their friends are, the types of circles they are in–even in the cool thing, even if they have in a community group– let’s have them in a subdivision– there are some awesome strategies for that, too.
If everyone who inquiries about your products or services or makes a purchase from, you should go on that list. You should capture at least–the very least–their name, their address or phone number, their date of purchase, what they bought, how much they spent. If they’re using the Internet, you should also try to capture their email. And there’s other ways to capture their email if they become your customer, you just tell them you’re going to have to email him the proposal so you always have their email.
So, the cool thing about all this information– I’m sure you’ve heard it before from many other people in different industries– there’s money in the list. So, you can run promotions, so you can keep in touch with them on a regular basis like with a newsletter or something like that.
Remember, all things being equal. People would rather do business with people or businesses they know, they like and they trust. So, another thing you can do is send out a customer questionnaire –when I think we’re going to put that in this program for you later on and when we give you the free report when it becomes available. Because– now, here’s the cool thing. Send it to him by mail with a self-addressed stamped envelope. You’ll get more that way and then there’s other email techniques that you can use a few other emails and they have a Gmail then you can send them a link to your, you know, Google pages refuse and stuff like that.
But, the question here is great to send in the mail because it just lets you know the service you did, what they expected. And now, it becomes a testimonial letter for you–that you can keep in your packet and send it out with your proposals. So, you know this is– this is pretty cool and you can–and there’s tons of things you can do with it.
So, really the cool thing about having your list and marketing to your list on a regular basis is that you have no competition by advertising and promoting to your own customer list by direct mail. No one knows what you’re doing but the recipients. Your competition doesn’t know. It’s sort of like stealth marketing at its best and that makes you more professional and it makes you go to guy because you are continually keeping in touch with them. Yes, it’s more work but the rewards are well worth the work. Especially, if you if you put it into an automated– automated process.
Marketing mistake number 7. Not using headlines. Think about how you read the daily newspaper or how you do news feed on the internet. If you’re like most people, you read it by using a headline search, you scan, you pursue and you go through what you’re looking at and reading only the headlines. And if one happens to catch your interest, you may read the accompanying article. So, what is that doing? The sole purpose of a headline is to catch the reader’s interests and create a desire for them to read for.
That’s why they call headlines and that’s why they’re printed in large bold type–So they grab your attention. So, the best place to see good headlines is in a newspaper or like to inquire. And one of those papers they have some headlines because they write those headlines so they’ll grab your attention so you read the article. The worst place? — a lot of marketing material: yellow pages. I mean look some of the full-page ads under the heading of insurance in the Yellow Pages. Tell you what not to do. See if any of these headlines compel you to read further or want to find out more.
Here’s a few headlines that I found in the insurers section and I’m just going to use the old pages for an example here because it’s the easiest automobile insurance. Really, I’m in the automobile section of the book. I would hope you sold auto insurance. “Western Pacific Agency”. So, who cares? What benefits that to me? Sorry but the name of your company doesn’t excite me or make me want to read further. So, your headline it’s not your company business.
Better things to do than shop for insurance? Well, answer: Of course, I do. And that’s why I’ve got better things to do than answer that dumb question or read your insulting ad any further. “Insurance shop”: What’s the benefit to me? — Insurance, Computer codes, so what? Any one of the number of companies can do the same thing. Why should I call or read any further? See, none of these are great headlines. They don’t compel me to go any further, they don’t compel me to check out the service any farther. And, you know, so this sort of sucks. So, the example isn’t only limited to insurance companies either.
Look in your category of your business in all the marketing piece. Go to the head, go to the yellow pages and look under the headlines. See if they don’t make the same mistakes. Go into, you know, pull up painting and Google and see what it says. Painting company: “We do painting”, “We’ve been in business for 25 years”. Who cares? But see, that’s the problem. You want people to care. You want people to read further. So, you need to really, (be) compelling, headlines that are closed with catchy headlines like: “Teeth lead to man in money con”, “Boy, 10, recovering from dog attack”, “Zerok cuts 5000 local jobs”. So, these are attention grabbing headlines that are going to make you get your attention day in rush to weigh. Interrupt to whether you’re thinking and you want to actually figure out why.
Matter of fact, there was a really good one the other day that I found on linked in post. Believe it or not. So, here’s the news feed isn’t linked to any other day I got an e-mail that says: “These jobs will go away by 2030”. Heck yeah! I’m going to go see with it is. “Navy wants smaller warships that pack a bigger punch”.
So, here’s another one that’s pretty cool: “10 signs they’re going to hire you and treat you like dirt”. Are you going to read that article? Well, you’re going to certainly think about it. So, here’s how, so you see where I’m going to is you got to create an interest to grab their attention so their eyeballs are peeled. So, here’s one for maybe just your business. You redo it the way you want. “Local home owners save thousands using contractors proprietary services”. I mean you can go wherever you want with that one. So, here’s another example. We’re going to use a computer company: “East Valley computers” –or here’s their ad: “How to sit at home and make twelve hundred hours a week with your computer even if you don’t know how to use it.”— Would you read that article? Absolutely.
So, I want to get your creative juices flowing. Don’t think about being a plain Jane or a plain Bob. Whatever. And I think about what can I do, what can I use headlines for, and how am I going to get them so that they’d grab– actually grab m potential client’s eyeballs? That’s really Chuah and you know 500 dollars off it’s not going to do it because everyone offers 500 dollars. So, let’s continue– just a hair more. Hey, we’re getting to the end of our time. I just want to thank you for being here. But tomorrow is: Number eight: Failing to use testimonials. How do we get testimonials? So, tomorrow we’ll let you know. Hey, have a great day and we will catch up on the backside tomorrow. Be profitable. Have fun. And enjoy your business and your profits.
There are so many ways to do almost free marketing you just have to think about it or you could just go to the web site and pick up the free download.
If you have a story to tell and would like to be a guest on this podcast email my assistant Shell at Shell@contractorssecretweapon.com and she will send you our guest sheet.
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