What I’m about to share is critically important to your success in marketing your business. Pay close attention, take notes, read this email several times.
If you don’t get this part right nothing else will work. Period. Full stop.
Knowing your customer is the most important piece of the puzzle.
If you don’t have a deep and intimate understanding of what your customer truly wants and needs, what keeps them up at night, or how they view the world…
Your marketing will fail. The latest Facebook or YouTube strategy won’t work. All the content writing will be ineffective. Networking, billboards, or badgering everyone in your community will all be for nothing.
We live in the attention economy, where everyone has a marketing message they believe you, me, and everyone else needs to hear right this very second, and have no problem shouting it to everyone they can.
So the question becomes, how do you stand out? How do you actually get someone to listen to your message out of the 5,000+ other messages they’re exposed to everyday.
(That’s right we are exposed to, on average, over 5,000 marketing messages each day, some estimates put it closer to 10,000).
Let’s start with an example and work backwards.
I was talking to a clinic owner last week about a video they wanted to create to promote an energy boosting infusion.
The original video started like this: “Hi I’m [owner] with [clinic], and I want to share with you a secret that has transformed my life and can transform yours as well. Many people don’t know that I have struggled with chronic fatigue in the past, so believe me I know what you may be going through but I want to share with you that there is always hope so don’t give up.”
We only have 3-5 seconds to capture someone’s attention and this really doesn’t have anything that stands out.
These opening sentences are missing that key statement that would get our ideal prospect to stop what they’re doing and become suddenly very interested in what we have to say.
A common mistake business owners make is they want to be broadly appealing. Cast a wide net and scoop up as many people as they can. The reality is they’re throwing a net out there with holes so big that people will just swim out of.
The goal instead should be finding a small group of people who you can speaking directly too. A group of people who have a burning desire to solve this problem and would do anything to fix it.
Let’s consider the high performance business person who wants to get a promotion or make partner quickly. This is a group of people that needs all the energy they can. If they struggle with chronic fatigue they want to fix it quickly because they know it could cost them the promotion.
There’s also a big incentive to fix this problem. That promotion could mean tens of thousands of dollars in extra income, greater prestige or status in their life, etc.
These high performers are likely already spending money trying to get every advantage they can. It’s important to find pockets of people already spending money trying to fix a problem (we’ll go deeper on that in another email).
Now we’ve identified a sub group we want to market to we can spend focus our efforts on getting to know what makes them tick. What are they afraid of, what are their desires, who do they look up to, etc.
Now we can come up with an intro that would really capture their attention:
He could feel that promotion slipping away every time he pressed the snooze button but he could not get out of bed. That is until we started him on a protocol that no one else at his firm was using. Now everyone wants to know his secret to peak performance.
Something like that is going to stand out and get someone to stop what they’re doing and want to read more. It speaks to a deep fear and desire they have, the promotion.
Whenever possible we want to show and not tell. Instead of saying, “he was chronically tired” we can show that by talking about hitting the snooze button even though he knows he needs to get up and really wants that promotion.
Then we’re tapping into that curiosity and exclusivity by mentioning a solution that no one else is using. And we’ve elevated his status by mentioning that everyone is now asking him for the secret.
We can only get to all of this good stuff by choosing a very specific audience and understanding them very deeply. If you get this part right, the rest of your marketing efforts will be much easier.
If you get it wrong though, you’re just going to be one of 5,000 messages your prospects skip.
If you run an online business you can get very specific on the people you serve. If your business is local and relies on people being in a certain geographic area then the size of that area will determine how specific you can be.
No matter what size of your audience though, you should not try to speak to everyone. Even if you’re in a smaller town there is still a segment of the population that would be better suited to what you offer.
In our chronic fatigue example think new parents, parents who work full time, aging adults who still want to play a specific sport. There are still options and it’s your job to go out and find those people in your area.
I do want to be clear, there is no magic bullet to this. No easy button, hacks, or tricks. This does require you to put in time and effort. That time and effort will pay you back 100 times over though so do the work.
Let me know if you found this valuable and want more like this.
– Jason Duprat, MBA, MSA, CRNA