Marketing to Consumers for Your Business
What Will Make Consumers What to Engage and Buy from You
Marketing in a New Age to Reach and Grow an Audience of Evangelists
Let’s face it, today’s consumers are totally different than any other time in history. Think about it… 5 years ago, where would you find out about the book your college friend just read and how it might impact you? In fact, how did you even stay close to your friends from college or high school? If you’re like most people, you likely didn’t stay as close as you would have liked. Luckily, social media has now made it possible for all of us to connect and stay updated on our friends’ and families’ progress throughout life.
While many people believe social media can take time (and it can), it can also be an enabler to helping people who really care about one another stay connected and communicate. Considering the fact that all of us (as consumers) get educated and join the workforce to provide for ourselves and our families, time becomes a challenge and so we have to balance where we spend it. Unfortunately, it is usually not proactively visiting, calling or emailing friends and family as much as we would really like to communicate and stay in touch with them. In fact, this is one of the major reasons Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s are such big holidays – they provide everyone a common time, event and purpose to come together as family and friends.
So what does all of this have to do with helping local businesses reach local consumers? Well, it means traditional marketing is no longer effective. What we call Splash and Blast advertising is no longer effective. Think of the common traditional marketing term eblast for email marketing. Consumers are tired of email marketing that interrupts them and does NOT bring them value – the eblast approach. Think about it… one of the most challenging obstacles for television advertising companies to overcome is how technology now allows ease of recording and fast forwarding through commercials. These television commercials are their form of advertising revenue and they – as advertising companies – depend on it.
Today’s consumers have so many more ways of communicating and keeping up to date than ever before. While television, radio and other traditional forms of media are still very important, social media and other Internet communities allow sharing to people interested in what others have to share at a much faster and more effective way than these traditional methods.
Marketing experts like Seth Godin have been sharing for the last several years the importance of marketers and marketing agencies in understanding this concept. Seth specifically believes that the “TV-Industrial complex” means that marketers and marketing agencies can no longer gain the awareness they did in the past through interrupt marketing and need to be focused on permission marketing. Consumers are no longer interested in splash and blast marketing tactics and content. They are interested in value exchange – what does your message and communication do for them?
Many local marketing companies in Dallas or other major metro areas take a shotgun approach for their clients in marketing to a broad audience versus using local marketing strategies targeting a more specific audience. In the Dallas metro area, there are 6 million consumers with 2 million homes. Where splash and blast marketing seems logical considering the millions of people, it is usually not as effective as local marketing strategies to a well-defined audience. For instance, if your company provides kitchen remodeling in Southlake to homeowners with $300,000 or greater homes, it does not make sense for you to market to an area of east Dallas with average home values of $150,000. In fact, can you think of the different type of communication you might have with these two different audiences? If it isn’t different, your message is wrong.
Think about it… someone living in Southlake in a $400,000 homes is in a different place in their life than someone living in east Dallas in a $150,000 home, so their interests will be different. In addition, if you are marketing your local home services to a local audience, isn’t Southlake much closer in proximity making it more effective and efficient for you to focus on that community? You might even grow your kitchen remodeling in Colleyville, Grapevine, Keller and other areas around Southlake – depending on the home values and the interests of those homeowners.
Last, if you serve your audience well with educational, exciting and engaging communication and content, they will spread the word and word of mouth referrals are stronger than any marketing and much easier to a close audience – specifically neighbors and friends that live close. Social media videos and blogs telling stories of your work for neighbors to share with friends and family is what many local marketers find to be helpful. Try it and see what you find.