Optimize My Brand

Strategy, tactics, ideas and tips from Creative Company.

Four tips to bigger results from every marketing tactic

What do they want from you?

The driver for all effective marketing is your audiences. Not what you offer. And what do those target audiences want? Whether business to business or business to consumer, people are still people.

Think from standing in their shoes

Often the toughest thing about marketing is to shift your viewpoint from what you already know—to look at your message, your goods, your benefits from someone elses point of view. (Echoes of political arguments, no one wants to see it the way the other person sees it.)

But in marketing, and even in graphic design, you have to think WIIFM … What’s In It For Me … as if you are looking at what you offer from the perspective of your target audience. Be one of them. That can be tough if you’re a Boomer and the target audience is a twenty-something Millennial. Or if you know a LOT about your topic and category and your audience knows only a little. It takes practice, and talking to people who represent the people you’re trying to reach … or talking to your best customers and clients and referral sources.

Four things to keep in mind

In a recent presentation titled “Branding – Why Bother?”, (now uploaded to Slideshare) we touched on how your audiences are deciding. What will grab them and move them to take action and choose you? They want:

  • A surprise … what’s unexpected, different, unique in your category? What will rise above all the “me too” ads, messages, promotions, brochures out there? It’s easy to get lost in the crowd when your look, message, materials are very similar to the rest of those competing for the same customer. Check out our unexpected, in-your-face graphics for garbage trucks!
  • Fly Salem flyerQuick, simple, easy … people are so busy and overwhelmed with information these days, it’s important to make it simple for them to find you, to respond, to click through and to buy. Don’t make them figure anything out, or they won’t. Our promotion for Fly Salem included a map to quickly find the airport. >>>>
  • A story … people want to know the back story, the idea, the emotion. They want to know something they can relate to or aspire to be part of. They want to feel a connection. (and don’t forget the surprise part, be different and unexpected) The pie boxes for Willamette Valley Fruit Co. tell the story of the fruit, the farmers and the handmade pies.
  • What’s in it for me? … so many organizations just list their products and services without relating the benefits to the target audience. It’s great if you have “innovative features,” but as the target audience, what does that mean and why should I care?
    In some cases, it’s the relationship, how you do business and take care of your customers, that lifts you above those in the same industry. Use those stories and messages. When we worked with SELCO Community Credit Union, talking to members always ended up with a big grin of delight … “oh, SELCO, I love SELCO!” That’s why the brand promise attached to the logo became  SELCO | Smile.

Get more response

It’s actually pretty logical. Human nature is selfish. We all want to know why we should care. We’re busy. We have lots of choices. We’re distracted by all of those other marketers trying to get our attention.

When you shift to looking at what you provide from the audiences’ point of view, they’ll pay attention. And they’ll respond.

Your brand, your message … all of your marketing should be framed from what your audiences want and expect … and how you are going to provide just what they’re looking for … at every point of choice. The point of choice is where your audiences choose to take action, to move along that continuum of contacts that will deliver your bottom line result — new students, more products sold, new clients, happy customers, a great referral.

Of course, if you’re having a tough time deciding who to target, or what your message should be, that’s where we come in. Give us a call toll-free 866.363.4433, or drop us an Email to share your thoughts or questions.

You can also visit our website for more information and examples of our work (it’s pretty good stuff).

If you know it’s time to get a bigger return from your marketing, but you don’t know where to start, consider a brand audit.


About the author

Jennifer Larsen Morrow

Jennifer's four decades of work in the industry, starting as a designer and adding marketing, copywriting and digital marketing, has generated response for clients since 1978.

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