Last Updated: Dec 7, 2017
You don’t have to be a marketing professional to come up with good marketing strategies for your business. You just need to think outside the box. Here’s how to do it.
There was a time back in the fifties when microwave ovens were first seriously marketed. They were marketed to women on the basis of speed. Bad move. Women were afraid of them. Kitchens at the time were small and there was no room. More importantly, housewives thought that they were shirking their duties by using this new fangled gadget. At that time, women were expected to cook. Not to cook fast, but to slave over a hot oven.
So some marketing gurus at the time came up with a creative idea. They sold microwaves to men. Men loved the technology so much, that they talked their wives into buying one. They were first used for defrosting, or reheating leftovers. They soon became a staple of modern culture. They forced their way into the lives of people. Kitchens also became bigger.
So it was creative marketers who created the interest in the device. A similar thing is happening with the insipid Keurig coffee machine that makes only one cup if mediocre coffee at a price that rivals gas. They were first sold to coffee lovers who wanted a new show-offy appliance. But the product is trickling down to mainstream America. Yes, I have one, but I digress.
It was marketing and thinking outside the box that created the demand. Call it creative marketing. Now, I have heard time and time again that small businesses have no time for marketing. Is it more fun to write checks than invoices? The object of creative marketing is to make your product or service a necessary part of daily life. Creative marketing is finding a one sentence solution or mnemonic that turns your product or service into a must have – either emotionally or physically. It’s not that hard, once you find a segment of people you want to sell to and hit their “hot button.”
Since you’re reading this on Businessknowhow.com, I can assume you have a business or are thinking of starting one. Let’s say you have a virtual assistant service. Why are you doing that? The common “wisdom” is that computers reduce or eliminate the need for administrative assistants. But do they? Common wisdom is rarely wise. Here are five ways to position a virtual assistant service.
If you make contact with a buyer and did it professionally you may have made yourself a vital part of your customer’s life. And that’s your goal.
But maybe you don’t have a service. Maybe you have a product like candles you make on a kitchen table. You’re actually selling a service.
Okay, you now have a product that’s going to become a part of someone’s life. Do you wait for sales to come in? No you’re proactive, using every means possible to get your product in front of a customer.
Sell your product to the people who seem to have the most need.
Who are those people? Like the microwave oven inventors, you have to figure it out – or at least guess. It’s part of creative marketing. But what does creative marketing actually mean? It’s selling in new ways people haven’t sold before and creating a need that most people don’t know they have.
To whom? To the people who are most likely to buy your product.
Figure out who your customers are and where you can find them with this free, fillable Market Research Worksheet.
But what do you do if you don’t have a product? Find a problem and solve it in a new way. More about that in future columns. So what is there to know about marketing? Here are the ten commandments. Very successful marketers know them or use them subconsciously.
The Ten Commandments of Marketing:
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Barry Feig is president of Barry Feig’s Center for Product Success an outsourced marketing company where he researches and creates new product opportunities, positionings, marketing strategies and names. Visit his website at www.barryfeig.com or e-mail him at [email protected]. His newest book is Hot Button Marketing: Push the Emotional Buttons That Get People to Buy. Find out more at www.hotbuttonmarketing.net.