Friday, October 02, 2009

Do you have it Backwards?

Yesterday I devoted my lunch hour to a marketing meeting for a non-profit. As I listened to all the plans they had, I thought, "who cares?" It seems like we were raising the flagpole to show how great we are and not really paying attention to what draws engagement from those they want to serve.

So, between now and the next meeting, I will need to sit down with the chair of this marketing committee and express my concerns. Afterward I may decide to let them do their flagpole raising, but without my involvement.

In my email today, was the latest from Seth Godin talking about this subject too:

Sell like you buy

Here are the two most common pleas I hear from marketers,

"Our product is as remarkable as we can make it, and we're trying really hard and it's very important to us that people buy it, but despite our hard work, it's not selling!" (Hint: calling it a purple cow doesn't make it one).


"Our business is built around the status quo, and it's not fair that the market wants something else now."

In both cases, the marketing pitch is focused around the seller, not the buyer. You wouldn't (and don't) buy from someone who says you ought to choose them even though there's a cooler, more remarkable, cheaper, better product. You don't seek out or talk about status quo brands merely because the marketer is trying really hard.

If it's not good enough for you as a consumer, why should it be good enough for you as a marketer?

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