Author: Leanne Hoagland-Smith
Marketing Axiom 1-Greater Awareness Increases Sales
You can have the best product or service, incredible customer loyalty and the greatest ROI, but unless someone sees and more importantly wants to learn more about you, it truly doesn’t matter about your products or services. Think about the good times that follow bad times. People who previously would not spend their money are loosening up their purse strings. They will go to the businesses they remember especially if they have no loyalty to a particular store.
In bad times, people shop where they perceive they are receiving the most bang for their buck. Again, this perception is created by marketing through special offers to top of mind awareness (TOMA).
Marketing research suggests your potential customers and existing customers need to hear about your products or services at least 33 times in a given year. Translated into a monthly number equals 2.75 contacts. Between direct mail, e-mail, paid print advertisements, radio or television commercials to actual physical contacts through business events, you must connect with your target market almost 3 times every month if you wish to increase sales.
Additionally, new marketing research conducted by Pitney Bowes suggests direct mail is preferred by 70% over electronic mail. Now direct mail (anything received through what many call “snail mail”) is postcards, handwritten notes to paid advertising in business journals or newspapers.
Now, awareness is not selling. Unfortunately, far too many in business perceive marketing to equal selling. These are the folks who always talk about their products and prices quickly followed by “Let me send you a proposal.” By remembering this axiom, you may reduce your confusion about marketing and selling and truly be the Red Jacket in the sea of gray suits. The added value is you are now on a better path to actually increase sales.
Marketing Axiom 2 – AIDA Model Is Queen
Products or services only sell themselves only after these 4 actions have been taken, leading to an established relationship.
- After Attention
- After Interest
- After Desire
- After call to Action
People buy from people they know and trust. Until you accomplish these four actions, the likelihood that you have the beginnings of a mutually agreeable relationship has been greatly diminished.
Take a moment to think about sales from the perspective of the game of chess.
There is a lot of thinking (strategy) taking place. The King is the Buyer and you as the seller are most like the Bishop where you advise the King. However, if you fail to establish a relationship, the game is lost and hence this is why the Queen is key. For without the relationship, the buyer will go elsewhere no matter how great your advice is as the Bishop. Additionally, there is always the opportunity for someone else (think competition) to capture your Queen and leave you with checkmate (no increase sales).
Again, who else can get the attention, the interest and desire of the King? The Queen is usually the best person to achieve those goals. And usually she can be one to provide a call to action. For without the Queen (the relationship), the sale will languish far from the cash box. (Translation, you will not increase sales.) To capture the Queen demands you must be the Red Jacket and the AIDA model will help you do just that.
Business is at least:
- 75% about marketing
- 25% about selling
Unfortunately, for many the opposite is true with 25% or less time being devoted to marketing. Then when the business becomes busy delivering its products or services there is even less time for marketing. When you think you do not need to market because business is good to great, then look to your nearest McDonald’s. Has this business with impressive branding stopped its marketing?
Also returning to Axiom 1, did McDonald’s stop marketing during known turbulent economic times? Absolutely, not! McDonald’s knows their target market can be fickle and easily motivated to go elsewhere for their fast food.
One of the reasons that so many businesses stop marketing during bad times is because they lack an overall strategic action plan as well as the subsidiary plans of marketing, sales, customer loyalty, growth & innovation, leadership & management and financials. What then happens is the Captain Wing It scenario where actions are being sprayed and prayed all over the place with the hope that something sticks.
Take action and determine where you are spending your time versus investing your time. Make sure you continue to market your business. If it is good enough for McDonald’s it is truly good enough for you.
Marketing Axiom 4 – Heart, Head and Hands Prevail
According to Dr. Hartman and the science of Axiology, people make buying decisions with their heads, their hearts and their hands. To leverage (think influence) how people make these decisions requires a convincing message with these four elements:
- Powerful Story
- Cohesive Message
- Emotional Exploitation
- Targeted Audience
Your message is the first and most crucial step within the overall sales process. A weak message delivers equally weak results. However, a message that fails to emotionally connect with your potential customers (a.k.a. prospects) will also deliver poor results.
Take a few moments to think about your existing marketing message and how it attracts your potential customers. Are you sounding like all those other businesses when you begin speaking? Have you ever considered you are playing a very worn record that drones on and on and one instead of one that literally stops your targeted audience in their tracks?
Since people hear words and think in pictures, you have far more control of the picture they are painting in their brains than you probably realize. When you begin to observe what words trigger an emotional response, you can weave those very same words into your story. Then all you need to do is to ensure your overall message is cohesive in that is has a beginning, a middle, an end and makes sense specific to what you do.
By remembering this axiom, will help you with Axiom 2 and eventually lead to more sales.