However, we’ve reached a level of marketing saturation that has made those methods that used to work obsolete.
To be really successful in today’s highly competitive marketplace, we need to start answering a different question in our advertising…”why.”
Consider the fast food hamburger as an example. There are a lot of different foods competing for our dollars when we’re in a rush. The super easy choice is a hamburger. The big three are McDonalds, Burger King and Carl’s Jr. They all make and sell hamburgers. They all cost about the same. So how can they gain market share? By answering the why. Of the three places, I admit I eat at McDonalds and Burger King more than Carl’s. Of those two, I like Burger King the best. Why? Because of the flame broiled burger. I think BK makes the best mass-produced hamburger in the country, if not the world.
I drive by a tune up place in Murray fairly frequently that has a message on its marquee saying, “Follow us on Twitter.” Every time I think “why?” I can’t think of a reason. Maybe they’ve got one. They probably wouldn’t go to the trouble if they didn’t, but it’s not being communicated. A better message would be “Follow us on Twitter because you can get a free tune up.”
I tell people to read my blog because they’ll learn how to use Twitter and Facebook and blog in a profitable manner. More importantly other people say the same thing.
The key to answering the “why” question is to include the word “because.” I got this idea from Copyblogger, but I’ve heard it from other sources too. Your because can be anything, just use the word because it answers the question “why.” I like Burger King burgers because they’re flame broiled. The question of “what” is answered by the product and the question of “how much” doesn’t matter because it’s the best tasting burger out there and the price differential between my other burger choices is nominal.
Answering the question “why” removes the price question altogether so long as consumers are clear on what your product or service is. Your “why” should be your competitive advantage or unique selling proposition. Price doesn’t have to, nor should it enter into your advertising, if you answer the question why.
Last year I had the opportunity to test drive a Bentley. I always wondered why someone would spend over $200,000 for a car when a perfectly good BMW or Mercedes costs a fraction of that price. Once I drove the car, I understood why. Other than the fact I couldn’t afford it, price didn’t come into play at all. From the massaging seats to the powerful engine to the hand stitched interior that looked so well put together it could never fall apart, I learned the “why.” I would have bought the car on the spot if I had the money.
We’re not all out there selling Bentleys, but if we answer the question of “why” in our advertising, we’ll never have to answer “how much.”
What is my “why?” I make websites successful.
At the end of October I had the opportunity to visit the Send out Cards facility in Salt Lake City.
What I like about this business is it allows people and businesses to send out their message in a form people will open – a greeting card.
From a marketing standpoint it’s analog marketing at its finest. The company takes advantage of technology to provide personalized printing solutions and distribution for a very low per unit price.
Two things allow Send out Cards to do what it does; technology and efficient systems. For example, the company orders paper in certain quantities so it doesn’t age or dry out. This “just in time” ordering allows a quality product to go out every time.
The technology driving the company is mind-boggling. They can print one custom card or post card, score it, fold it, stuff it into an envelope and stamp it for less than $2.00 per unit.
Think about what that means for a small business that uses direct mail for marketing. You can send out a direct mail campaign with a mouse click, have someone else do the work and actually reach your customers because most people will open a card!
How important is this in today’s digital world? Very much so. Consider this example from Andy Sernovitz:
We have a member of our team who got hired because she sent a great cover letter in the mail. It was the only paper resume we got, so we noticed. We weren’t even hiring, but the letter was so great we had to grab her before someone else did.
In today’s highly competitive marketing world three things need to happen for you to be successful; be found, be noticed, be remembered. Do you think Send out Cards can do that? I do.
Having done targeted direct mail for a mortgage company, I see immense value for any company that sends out small quantities of direct mail. In addition, I see the open rate for greeting cards to be superior in every way.
Consider that with a traditional direct mail campaign, a good response rate is going to be 5%. 95% of the people who get your post card, coupon or letter are going to throw it away. Most will do it without even reading your message.
For a message wrapped in a greeting card, the numbers are much different. Another Send out Cards representative told me he put together a campaign for a local restaurant and they saw a 30% response rate to their offer in a card. If you do any direct mail, I think Send out Cards has to be part of your tool set. I know it’s a part of mine.
It’s easy to start and set up. I sent a dozen Christmas cards to clients and family this afternoon without licking an envelope or buying stamps. If you’re in the insurance business, mortgage business or real estate business and not taking advantage of this amazing tool, I highly recommend you get started today.
We’re down to the final week of the Utah’s Top Blogger contest. The nominee list was finalized last Friday and it’s now up to you to vote.
Nominees should still be putting the badge or telling their audience about the contest. That’s the reason “Mormon mommy blogger” Brandy Roth is beating Dooce. Here are the results to date…
Brandy Roth – 73%
Bob DeLong – 16%
Heather Armstrong – 10%
Janet Thaeler – 2%
19 other nominees – 0%
If you haven’t yet voted in the contest, take a look and pick a nominee to vote for.