Marketing Messages

I talk a lot about Marketing in these newsletters e.g. how the most effective form of marketing is regular and repetitive or about the need to use lots of different ways (Communication Channels) to communicate your marketing message.

But what should your Marketing Message say?

Well the first thing to note is that for the vast majority of us our main marketing message is not a strap line. Now I love a strap line and they can be a great way to get across a concept about how you do business or the culture of your business but your Marketing Message needs to be real and to the point, communicating very clearly what you do to your potential customers.

You may have noticed that I write above about “communicating… to your potential customers” and it is important that before you think about what you are saying in your message you consider who you are saying it to and most especially that you use language they will understand.

Taking time to define your customers in terms of broad demographic categories and actually creating “identikit” customers who have specific characteristics is a really worthwhile exercise.

Once you understand who you are talking to then you can work on your message. Your starting point is a simple, easy to understand overview statement of your business e.g. maybe you are “Accountants & Business Advisors” or you “make Soft Furnishings”.

However, whilst we all have a broad understanding about what, for example, an Accountant does, real people i.e. you and I, connect much more with specific examples that we understand and can relate to, rather than with broad abstract terms. So, including specifics in your marketing message, especially those services that you know lots of your existing customers have used you for will help ensure your potential customers notice it.

So, make a list of your most popular services / products and describe them in your customer’s language i.e. what their problem was, not your descriptive words (i.e. possibly industry jargon) of the solution you provided.

For the Accountant we mentioned earlier clients might have needed help with sorting out tax and Capital Gains on a “Buy to Let” Property or a small business may have wanted to know when they need to register for VAT and how to do so. Make sure you really do think about language / terminology e.g. people usually talk about needing “new curtains” rather than “soft furnishings”.

Then consider what is the most specialist / obscure service you offer – maybe you are an Accountant that loves doing small charity accounts. Including one of the more specialist aspects of your service in your Marketing Message as well makes you stand out as being different and memorable.

Now I am sure reading this you might be thinking but how can I include all this information in one marketing message, especially if I also want to include a strapline and have contact details to mention as well? The answer is you can’t… but you don’t need to.

Successful marketing is not about communicating one long detailed message at one specific point in time. It is an ongoing and continuous process – a conversation – where you keep the main message consistent but change the details along the way, using a variety of different communication channels to do so.

This is why when thinking about your networking thirty seconds I always recommend a structure of:

·         Your Name / Business Name

·         A brief summary of what you do – which stays the same each month

·         An example of a specific detail of the service you provide – which changes each month

·         Your Name / Business Name