Saturday, October 02, 2010
While natural market forces are driving this awareness, so are the marketing agencies and media publications dedicated to marketing to moms. Columns focusing entirely on mothers, such as this one were a rare find until recently. (Kudos to you, MediaPost.)
Marketing and sales efforts designed to appeal to moms have improved as a result. Education and insight have led to a better understanding and appreciation of mothers, and there is less reliance on personal viewpoints and stereotypes.
At the same time, some businesses appear to take shortcuts in understanding and reaching out to mothers, and this poor approach shows, often in their marketing messages. Somewhere in the ad copy the words "as a mom" appear. "As a mom, you understand ..." "As a mom, wanting ..." Or, the business might believe it has a stronger connection with moms when it delivers messages such as, "As moms ourselves ...," "Moms like you ...," or "All moms want ..."
What's going on here? Well, I'll tell you. The campaign's core message likely isn't strong enough to stand on its own and effectively reach its target audience of mothers. The marketer is trying to compensate for a weak message by indirectly saying, "We get you. We understand what it's like to be a mother." I suspect, however, that it doesn't. It is attempting to pander to her role, and it doesn't work.
Moms are super-savvy consumers. They understand that marketers are competing for their attention and money. They've likely heard about or had experience with multiple instances of poor service, peppered with a few good ones. There are dozens of products that have fallen short of their expectations, and few that they adore. They have seen thousands of ads and marketing messages directed at them.
All of these factors have provided them with acute filters for identifying which products and services deserve their attention. Simply calling out "Mom" isn't enough and likely discredits the product or service among the audience of moms whom the businesses are trying to reach.
A better approach is to appeal to her needs and be a solution. To do so, businesses must be willing to make an investment in better understanding her world and how a particular product or service fits into it. They also must invest in learning more about the communication styles that appeal to women. I can assure you, they don't start with tired and trite introductions like, "As a mom ..."
|Kevin Burke works with businesses that appreciate mothers and want to build relationships with them, to deliver marketing experiences that moms value. He is founder of Lucid Marketing, MomsWhoBlog.com and a partner in HeardItFromAMom.com Reach him here.|
Two ways to increase your sales.
Get more customers.
Sell more to your current customers:
Daily Sales Tip: Selling Vertically, Not Horizontally
It's great to close a new prospect and increase your company's list of existing buyers.
But there are times when the lead pool is limited, and getting new prospects to agree to a sale is more difficult than usual.
When that happens, top salespeople go back to the well and spend some time selling deeper with their existing accounts.
Doing so helps build confidence, and it also provides a reasonable way to keep building revenue until conditions change.
Source: Business speaker/sales coach Anne Miller
Friday, October 01, 2010
Click & Read:
Posted: 20 Sep 2010 06:09 AM PDT
Is it just an odd coincidence that we as consumers are often presented with three tiered choices? Actually it's no coincidence at all.
They have proven scientifically that in most cases (I can't find the study or I would be more specific) the consumer will opt for the middle choice.
Here's how our brains see the options:
- The lowest choice seems bare-bones.
- The highest choice seems extravagant.
- But the middle choice... now, that's pragmatic. Not too little and not too much.
If you want to earn more revenue from your existing customers -- package their choices differently. Be sure there is an actual value difference (both in what they get and what they pay) in the tiers...but then, give them 3 options.
And stock up on whatever is lucky #2!Sphere: Related Content
I can't, that's impossible! How often are you thinking or saying
Sure the economy is tough.
Sure your customers are more demanding than ever.
Sure your competition would like to slap you silly as they try
to steal your business.
Your days are filled with highs and lows and ups and downs.
When you think about it though, you really don't have it too bad.
Just imagine, just for a minute, you had no arms and no legs and
you still had to make sales calls. Yeah right!
Would you please do me a favor? Grab your dictionary and cross
out the words "Can't" and "Impossible." If you're committed to
achieving selling success these words don't belong in your
You shouldn't think them and you shouldn't say them.
Instead - you should believe in yourself. You should believe you
can do anything you want to do.
If you're not convinced, please keep reading.
Two years ago, Philippe Croizon, a Frenchman who couldn't swim,
decided he was going to swim the English Channel. During these
past two years he devoted 35 hours a week to swimming and
Last week he swam the English Channel. He was expecting it to
take 24 hours and he did it in 13.5 hours.
At one point 3 Dolphins swam with him.
He swam at a constant 2 mph.
So you're wondering, "What's the big deal?"
16 years ago Philippe was removing a television antenna from
a roof when it hit a power line and jolted him with an
incredible electric shock. As a result his legs and lower arms
had to be amputated.
Using a snorkel and prosthetic legs with built-in flippers,
he set out to swim the English Channel. And did he ever!
Now back to you . . .
It's impossible to make quota this year.
It's impossible for me to shorten the selling cycle.
It's impossible for me to sell anything at list price.
It's impossible for me to deal with the price objection.
It's impossible to get my foot in the door at XYZ account.
It's impossible for me to sell more and earn more this year.
It's impossible for me to get appointments with the
It's impossible for me to make more appointments with new
It's impossible for me to take away the business from the
competition at a higher price.
When the going gets tough in your sales territory take a
minute to think about Philippe Croizon and what he
accomplished without arms and legs.
Never say "I Can't" or "That's impossible!"
Always believe in yourself!
It's up to you to believe you can do everything you are
determined to do - just like Philippe.
And never forget the difference between the word "Possible"
and the word "Impossible." The difference is how you think.
And maybe Henry Ford said it best when he said, "Whether
you think you can or think you can't - you're right!
Nothing is impossible unless you agree it is!
Now, let's go sell something!
Links To Selling Success
New Sales Manager Training - Webinar
Closing The Sales - Webinar
Checkout The Kindle Here
Book - 57 Ways to Take Control Of Your Time And Your Life
Screw The Recession - CD
How To Establish Goals That Stick - CD
35 Ways To Differentiate Yourself - CD
How To Avoid Sounding Pathetic During A Sales call - CD
Are You Complete To Compete - eBook
Time is the scarcest resource and, unless it is managed, nothing
Make everyday a masterpiece . . .
22 years . . .
528 customers . . .
72.7% repeat business . . .
Thursday, September 30, 2010
I have a special announcement.
Due to circumstances beyond my control, this is the very last posting I will ever make on any blog,
for the rest of the month.
It's okay though.
Since tomorrow is a new month and everything will be back to normal.
Sorry to alarm you.
Amy's weekly roundup with clickable links:
Vibram gives forgers the middle toe. Sea legs vs. land legs. Let's launch!
Australian online marine media company Yacht and Boat launched a quirky TV, print and social media campaign aiming to cure land sickness for boaters who prefer wobbly legs to land legs. The TV ads are not for the weak-stomached. In "Nausea," office workers performing ordinary tasks begin to sweat and appear ready to vomit. One worker even throws up in his office garbage can. Another races to the bathroom, where he bows down to the porcelain god. "Land sickness. There's only one cure," closes the ad, driving viewers to Yacht and Boat's Web site. Watch it here. Keeping yourself balanced while boating requires swaying with the ocean. It takes your legs some adjusting once you return to land. A woman teeters side-to-side in an elevator and friends drinking beer sway in motion. To a land lover, they look nauseous... and they are. See "Swaying" here. A print ad, seen here, shows what happens when you can't make it to the bathroom in time. The ads are running in marine publications and metro newspapers throughout Australia. Belgiovane Williams Mackay created the campaign.
Nissan Juke brings light to darkness, with a pent-up energy that creates a party. The small car, described as SUV-tough and sporty, launches this fall throughout Europe. Minute- and two-minute long versions of "Stay Awake" follow Juke down a dark city street. The car gives off electric energy, lighting dark buildings, reviving battery-operated toys, culminating with a billboard's lights exploding, bringing strangers together to watch the display. A man in drag is ready to call it a night but rethinks his decision once the billboard explodes. The music flows better in the 60-second ad than the 120-second. Fredrika Stahl sings "Twinkle Twinkle" and the line "like a diamond in the sky" is paired with the billboard exploding. Perfect. In the 120-second, the same line is paired with a diamond thief robbing a store. Not the same fit. See both versions of the ad here and here, created by TBWA/G1 and TBWA/Paris.
There's no mincing words or toes in a print ad for Vibram Five Fingers running shoes. I will be scouring my copies of Runner's World for it. Unlike typical running shoes, Vibrams fit like gloves, with a compartment for each toe. The ad attacks counterfeiters mimicking its shoes and soles. Running in Footwear Insight, Footwear News, Footwear Plus, Outdoor Insight and Running Insight, Vibram gives the middle toe to forgers. See the ad here, created by Nail.
Pacific Paint (Boysen) in the Philippines launched a beautiful print campaign that promotes the brand as "an accredited responsible care company for environmental safety" by creating animals from paint splashes. "Snail" and "Jellyfish," seen here and here, are my favorites. I had to look at "Mantis" a few times before creative resembled the insect. See it here. TBWA/Santiago Mangada Puno created the campaign.
Old-school male country-club members driving Mercedes, BMWs, Jaguars and Bentleys get a jolt to the system when golfer Michelle Wie arrives in her red Kia Soul. The lone female takes to the course and stuns onlookers with her golf swing, causing drinks to be dropped and a golf cart fender-bender. Kia Soul hopes to cause the same effect in the automotive realm. Watch the ad here, created by David&Goliath.
ESPN launched a trio of TV ads promoting its "Monday Night Football" coverage, part of the network's "Is It Monday Yet" campaign. "Two Stops" follows a torn-up middle manager riding a crowded bus home. His day can't get any worse: he accidentally sent an email mocking his boss' cankles to "all"; hit himself in the eye with a laser pointer; and set off the fire alarm trying to leave work early. Luckily, it's Monday and he has football to watch... with his working eye. See it here. "Stone's Throw" is hysterical. An office worker is seen leaving the office in a shredded shirt. Not only did a naked-lady picture make its way into his important presentation, he was caught picking his nose in public -- and his tie got caught in the elevator, causing him to lose his shirt and his fellow riders to lose their lunch. Watch it here. "Exit Away" follows the bad day of an electronics salesman. He congratulates a woman on being pregnant when she's not, shreds his tie in a blender, and mocks Stephen Baldwin's choice of jeans, resulting in a bloody nose. See it here. Wieden+Kennedy New York created the ads.
In honor of the DVD release of "Iron Man 2," let's look at a TV spot that ran earlier this year to coincide with the movie's theatrical release. Stan Lee makes a cameo appearance in a Dr Pepper ad as a Stark Industries custodian dusting Iron Man suits in Tony Stark's home lab. Lee's co-worker is mopping the floor when JARVIS, an AI computer program, is prompted. The co-worker asks to be suited up, expecting the Iron Man outfit; instead, he gets a hi-tech Dr Pepper vending machine. He's not complaining. Watch the ad here, created by Deutsch Los Angeles.
Random iPhone App of the week: The National Peanut Board launched a "Peanuts: Energy for the Good Life" app that offers recipes, snack suggestions and short meditation exercises with Stephan Bodian, author of "Meditation for Dummies." The app features more than 30 dietitian-selected recipes and emphasizes peanut snacks aside from the tried-and-true peanut butter. The app is free and available in the App Store.
from my email:
Daily Sales Tip: Don't Overlook Anyone
Rookie and veteran salespeople alike are often guilty of focusing in on the "buyer" while neglecting individuals who have the ability to kill a deal in the blink of an eye.
In fact, there are times when those individuals kill the deal simply because the salesperson ignored them, not just because they didn't address their needs or concerns about the deal.
Rule of thumb: If you don't know who all can influence a decision, assume everyone can until you know better. That includes the receptionist (yes, you'd be surprised).
Source: Kelly Riggs, founder and president of Vmax Performance Group
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
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Monday I read this piece from Chris Brogan about You.
Not just You, but me too.
And your brand. My Brand.
We used to call it our identity, our image, our persona.
Now, it's much more than that.
Now, each of us is a Brand.
As a matter of fact, my oldest daughter has a link on her website that is labeled ScLoHo Brand which goes to my home page.
Straight from Chris:
Personal branding isn’t really my focus. It’s something that I do because it’s part of marketing and building out the new way that social business flows. It’s something we wrote about in Trust Agents in the “Make Your Own Game” part. But I’m asked about it often. Here are my thoughts for how to move the needle with your personal brand in 2011 (and yes, you should start planning now). Oh, and Batman is going to help me illustrate along the way.
Personal Branding Basics for 2011
Decide On Your Promise
A brand is a promise. Christopher S. Penn quotes Ze Frank often, saying that it’s an “emotional aftertaste.” Think about it. You buy Apple because you know it’s well-designed. You buy Coke because you prefer the taste. You take your kids to McDonalds because you know they’ll eat it without a fuss. Whatever the promise, good or bad, that’s why you align with the brands you choose.
Brands as part of identity is even bigger. If you’re into bicycling, you’re a cyclist. You think that way. You eat accordingly. You spend your extra time accordingly.
Batman is defined by the goal to seek never-ending vengeance on criminals. That’s his promise. You’re a bad guy? It’s going to hurt. Batman is vengeance. And if someone else started being Batman, they’d pretty much have to own up to that promise, as well, or the brand would dilute.
Decide what you’re going to promise and start there.
Decide How to Best Represent that Promise
First, for everyone who calls themselves something like “The Leadership Doctor” after their name, or in lieu of their name, I challenge you to find me a very big, very successful personal brand who did the same. Richard Branson is Richard Branson. Oprah is Oprah. Madonna. Lance Armstrong. Mother Theresa.
None of them were “the something someone.”
So, now that you’re a name, how do you represent the promise of that brand? I’m turning Human Business Works into a brand that promises to help grow sustainable, relationship-minded business through helpful education and community. That’s the brand promise of HBW. By extension, my promise is that I can deliver that and that becomes part of my brand.
Batman represents his promise by executing on it, all the time. Instead of talking, he does. He executes.
Brands DO Have Symbolism, However
Don’t doubt for a moment that brands use powerful symbolism. That yellow Livestrong band shows up at quite a distance, plus echoes the Maillot Jaune (the yellow jersey) that signifies the leader and winner of the Tour De France. All good brands have symbolism. I changed the logo here at [chrisbrogan.com] to a “B” not only to represent my last name but to represent business, which is at the heart of all my projects. That “B” will show up in a lot of places coming up.
Batman’s symbol, the bat, started as a way to add to people’s fear, and then grew from there.
Promises and Symbols Require Repetition
One way that brands build and grow is by being there, and being there repeatably. When people ask me about my success and how I got to where I am now, I always answer that I was everywhere and I was helpful. Not only did I pay every dollar I could afford to show up to places, but I paid more dollars that I couldn’t afford. What was the result? (Besides ruining my credit) I was everywhere, and people started to know that I’d be there, and they knew that I’d be helpful when I was there, and that my speeches would be useful, and I built relationships that mattered. I built connections to thousands of the who’s who in my field (look at some snaps of them all here), and by that, I really mean most of the up and comers who are stars-in-the-making.
Batman showed up every time the signal was lit. He seemed to be everywhere to stop crime and to build momentum on the fact that crime wasn’t a good idea in Gotham City.
How do you repeat your promises? Live them. Be there. Be useful. Put out good media. Be at every event that you need to be at to grow your industry. Help as many up-and-comers as you can. Group and gather and cluster to build a team of helpful people. (Batman had Robin, Batgirl, and a whole cast of people you wouldn’t know the names of, unless you were as geeky as me).
Grow And Adapt
Madonna stayed on top of the heap of female musical performers for quite some time by adjusting and adapting and growing with the times. She’d morph her style but keep her Madonna-ness as she moved into new phases in her career. In every case, she’d bridge. She wouldn’t swing wildly from one style to another, but instead, she’d let her capabilities overlap into new areas, and we’d be left with the sense that she’d acquired a new style to her collection, instead of seeing her as some kind of wishy washy switcher.
Batman has been in the media since the 1930s. Back in the old days, he would slap people and use guns and do all kinds of quasi-vampire things. Then we had Adam West in the crazy 60s. Then we had Michael Keaton showing that you didn’t have to be crazy. Most recently, we have Christian Bale in the movies and all kinds of crazy stories in the comics. In all cases, the storylines get a little more modern, and keep us in the right mindset to accept that this man dresses up in personal armor and beats people all night long.
How will you grow and adapt your brand? For instance, if your branding is all around “social media” right now, what are you going to do in 2011 when that phrase starts to fall from grace? How will you vector your branding accordingly to keep it fresh and current? To quote friend Aaron Strout, “I’m in fax marketing.” See how silly that sounds? Well, in the 1990s, someone was saying that.
The Tools Are the Afterthought
Your branding isn’t a logo, the same profile pic everywhere, a catch phrase, a theme song. Your branding isn’t a clever little ploy. It’s a whole package, a whole storyline, a promise and symbols. Who cares which tools you’re using? Use the tools that let you tell that story best. If you’re looking for which tools to use, answer these questions:
- Which tools let you tell the story the best?
- Where is your audience?
- What do you want them to do with your promise?
- Are the tools you’re choosing serving this or no?
- How much effort is it to maintain your presence and your promise?
That’s a reasonable way to look at the tools, right?
Finally: Focus On Experimentation, Execution, and Storytelling
You want to crush it in branding? Focus on experimenting to improve your abilities, executing to bring your promise into the real world, and telling stories by making useful media to build relationships with your buyers and supporters. That’s the real formula. That’s where you’ll see your rewards. Repeat, repeat, repeat.
It’s the best advice I can offer you. For now.Sphere: Related Content
from my email:
Daily Sales Tip: Be Interested
As a rule, people aren't coming to you for your product or service because they find you interesting. There is nothing wrong with being interesting, or having a wonderful personality or fascinating life experiences. But customers aren't primarily concerned with doing business with interesting people. They want to do business with people who are interested in them. They want someone concerned with their needs, desires, fears and expectations.
If you want to remind yourself and others on your team of this important concept, just remember the lesson of young Johnny. Johnny was 10 years old when he came home from school and shared with his mom that he had a new girlfriend. "Wow, a girlfriend," his mom exclaimed, "What does she like about you?"
"She thinks I'm cute, that I'm funny and I'm a great dancer," Johnny answered.
"And what do you like about her?" mom continued.
Johnny's insightful response was, "That she thinks I'm cute, that I'm funny and that I'm a great dancer."
That's the essence of being interested. We respond positively to people who are interested in us and want to help. They make us feel good, and that's what draws us to them.
Start CARING about customers. Superior service begins with a genuine interest in and commitment to customers. It is about caring about them as individuals, and being obsessively concerned with the experience they have when they do business with you. And if you don't fundamentally care about the people you serve, I assure you that they won't care about doing business with you.
The best product at the best price isn't the best deal if you don't care about customers.
Source: Mark Sanborn, president of Sanborn & Associates, Inc.
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Click and read, as usual:
From Laura Ries:
Non-Profit Rebrand: On the House 2010
As part of my ongoing partnership with Matchstic’s On The House project, I have helped transform another non-profit brand this year.
Last year it was the Swift School. And On the House transformed the branding strategy and identity for a relatively new school that works with children with dyslexia. The success of that On The House project has far exceeded expectations. It shows that it isn’t just about doing good work, success also depends on building a powerful brand in the mind. Enrollment at the Swift School is way up this year. But more importantly, the students at Swift feel a new sense of pride about the themselves and their school.
On The House 2010
Seventy-two years later, the Great Depression of 1932 is ancient history but the Atlanta Union Mission is still going strong. The Mission provides emergency food and shelter, residential recovery programs and transitional housing to as many as 1,200 homeless, addicted or disenfranchised men and women and their children.
The Challenge: Help a 72-year-old brand founded during the Great Depression update its image, clarify its mission and focus its message.
The Name: Atlanta Union Mission.
In the early part of the 20th century, long, generic names were all the rage. General Electric. International Business Machines. American Telephone & Telegraph. When most businesses were small and local there was an advantage to sounding big and scopy.
Today, it is different. Today, generic names make poor brand names. The ear hears the name and doesn’t distinguish between uppercase and lowercase. A generic name is a description, not a brand. Almost all the best-known, most valuable brands in the word are proper names not generic ones. Coca-Cola, Microsoft, Apple, Disney, Ford, Susan G. Komen.
The one stand out it General Electric. But G.E. is No 1 or No 2 in the categories it competes in and more importantly it only competes against other conglomerates with equally poor brand names. G.E. hasn’t succeed in new technologies like computers and got out of the consumer appliance business. Remember, just because G.E. can violate a law of branding it doesn’t mean you can too.
Atlanta Union Mission is a very long and very generic name. So long that most people inside the organization and in the community call it by its acronym AUM. AUM is even worse than Atlanta Union Mission. AUM? They need to have a name people will use and that stands for something.
The most focused word they have is Atlanta, because that is the market they serve. Atlanta differentiates them from their competitors which are the large international charities.
“Union,” what does that mean? Today it has a much different meaning than it did. Back then it was used to show that the organization was “non-denominational.” Today it means “labor unions” and voting for Obama. This isn’t a political action committee, so using the word is confusing and worse polarizing.
Mission is a nice word, it conveys action and purpose but gets lost.
The suggestion was to drop Union. And to shorten the name to “Mission Atlanta” my choice. Or alternatively “Atlanta Mission” the clients choice.
Starting over from scratch isn’t always an option for a brand. The Atlanta Union Mission has a lot of support in the community and without a huge budget a totally new name would not have been the best decision. Here we have simplified and shorten the name to its core elements. And most importantly will help get people to use the name and not an acronym.
The verbal nail
The current tagline for the Atlanta Union Mission is “Saving Lives with Your Help.”
Like most taglines it is not specific enough. Is this a school for lifeguards?
No, the Atlanta Mission is a charity that helps people who are homeless get back on their feet. They help them with emergency assistance and with on-going educational and transitional programs.
The word that the Atlanta Mission wants to own in the mind is “homelessness.”
The verbal nail that drives that word in the mind is “Ending homelessness.” That is a tagline that is specific, memorable and emotional.
The visual hammer.
The current visual is an old-fashion lamp post. The new visual is a lantern.
The concept of "Shining The Light" has been a core element of the Atlanta Mission brand. This idea is retained while modernizing it with a new spin on its meaning. Instead of waiting for people to come to it, the Atlanta Mission will strive to bring the "light" to those who need it. The lantern is also a visual that can be incorporated in many creative ways. Giving people lanterns as they walk the streets. Using lanterns at fundraising events etc.
The mark also now includes a simple cross at the heart of the lantern representing Christ as the central force of the Atlanta Mission. If you are a Christian group than it is best to disclose this in an open, honest and friendly way.
Today, September 28th is the official launch day of the new Atlanta Mission brand. I feel very proud to have participated in this project. And look forward to the next On the House experience.
Our sales efforts often take a back seat to our day to day "housekeeping" duties and responsibilities. We don't always have time to focus our energies on doing what is truly best for our growing our income. This week Kim Duke gives us some simple yet powerful advice on staying focused and reaching your goals.
Not Every Day is Game Day
by Kim Duke
Years ago I had a sales manager who used to be a professional football player. One of his favorite expressions was, "Not every day is game day." Football players only play a regular season game one day a week. The other six days they are focused on preparing for Game Day.
Are you spending too much time on the field and not enough in the locker room? I see many entrepreneurs and salespeople getting overwhelmed by all the activities they need to do. They are going 100mph and running out of fuel fast. Of course, they end up exhausted, frustrated, depressed and anxious because they are not getting the results they want. Just because you are working hard doesn't mean you are working smart.
How to Be Prepared for Your Game Day:
Block off time in the morning. Each morning set aside a period of time for working on the business (this means no "warm and fuzzy" stuff like just meeting for coffee). I work on my business between 8 am and 11 am. This includes follow-up calls, marketing, setting appointments, writing articles, and sending my e-zine. In the afternoon I use my time for things such as meetings, research, and proposal writing.
Leverage your time. Be careful which clients and projects you accept. You want clients that are in your "target audience" and who can provide a foundation for referrals and future repeat business. Otherwise, you are spinning your wheels, working too hard and trying to make every day a Game Day.
Ask the magic questions. Each morning ask yourself, "What do I need to do today to move my business forward? What is the most important thing I can do to accomplish this goal?"
Too often I see salespeople and entrepreneurs occupying their time with all the "little stuff" - filing, pushing paper, making lists and other "housekeeping" chores. They keep themselves very busy yet aren't doing anything to grow their bottom line. Having a plan means that you are preparing for opportunity and when opportunity crosses your path you can seize it. Spend your time wisely and when Game Day arrives you'll be ready.
Kim Duke, The Sales Diva, provides savvy, sassy sales training for women, small business owners, and entrepreneurs. Additionally, she writes sales articles and sales tips for newsletters and websites internationally. Find out more at www.SalesDivas.com. Sphere: Related Content
Monday, September 27, 2010
Click & Read: