Maybe I should have titled this “Tips from the underground” or “Marketing secrets that few businesses discover.”
These are not the kinds of tips you find in textbooks or “how to market your business” courses or articles.
Yet, many of them are common sense based and really pretty logical in their thought and implementation.
So here you have some of the most simple, down-to-earth, practical yet seldom followed ideas that will boost your marketing traffic and success almost immediately.
1. Most consumers are “unconscious” when they decide to buy a product. They make an instant decision based on some irrational thought.
They often buy a product because it’s endorsed by a celebrity, or because it’s a particular color, or because their friends own one. What do any of these reasons have to do with the actual usefulness or quality of the product itself?
2. Most consumers purchase what they “want” rather than necessarily what they “need.” Forget about what you know is best for the customer. Find out (from him or her) what he/she wants and sell it.
3. Businesses and companies don’t buy products and services. Living, breathing humans in companies make buying decisions. Sell the individual rather than trying to figure out what the company needs.
4. People buy products to satisfy an emotional need that has been building for a long time. Often that emotional need is an irrational one, or based on a perception that may not actually have an validity.
Products are purchased not for their intrinsic value but for what they symbolize to the customer.
5. Customers respond to benefits rather than product features. They see themselves in their dreams as being happier, or more confident, more popular, wealthier, slimmer, or more intelligent as a result of their purchase. You often hear the marketing phrase: Sell the sizzle, not the steak! It’s true. Sell the dream or the desire, not the work it will take to make that dream a reality.
The majority of customers don’t care much about the features a product has that will take them to their dream. The want the end result.
6. People would rather have something done for them than learn how to do it for themselves. It’s maybe a sad commentary on the human being, but we’re either lazy, or have no time, or no inclination to do things for ourselves. We crave “automatic” or no work solutions to our problems and desires.
We want instant gratification, and we’d just as soon pay someone else to give us what we want.
Most folks would rather drive through a 3-minute car wash than take a half hour and save the expense of washing their own car in the driveway at home.
Most of us buy the quick fix, the pre-packaged, the “just add water” products that are simple, easy, and ready to provide benefit in an instant. It’s one of the reasons “fast food” joints are so popular nowadays.
7. Perception is reality for the customer. Whatever he thinks about you, your business, and products is what counts (even if it’s not true.) It’s one of the reasons for the saying “the customer is always right.” Of course, the customer is often wrong, but to suggest as a business owner that the customer is at fault can alienate your buyer and stop him from dealing with your business in the future.
If the customer perceives that your business will stand by him and provide unconditional customer service, you will have a loyal life-time client.
As a business owner you need to be very careful with your reputation – to not tarnish it in any way. Rumors spread among customers or within a niche can put you out of business.
8. Marketing is involved in every aspect of your business. You should consistently and consciously market yourself in everything you do. Branding is an ongoing activity that never ceases.
9. Many owners wrongly spend all their time working in their business. They should spend more time working on their business to realize greater profitability.
Step outside your business and look at all your operations, systems, and methods. Are they as effective, efficient and profitable as they can be? Working on a selling system might take only a few hours but that very effort could add 2o% to all your sales from today forward. A little smart effort can go a very long way!
10. Many entrepreneurs head to the Internet because of its global nature. The idea of selling to billions of customers seems enticing and logical. “Reach” as it is called can take a tiny one-person business and put it in front of potential prospects around the globe.
The more people that see your product, the better chance you’ll have a getting “X” percent to respond with a purchase.
In reality though, focusing on a narrow niche of very targeted customers will almost always be the most profitable strategy.
Don’t go fishing in the ocean. Attract your targeted customers (the fish) to a tiny pool and go after each one of them individually.
There are lots of other marketing ideas we’ll discuss in the future. Stay tuned . . .
To your online business success!