Small businesses today seem to be fighting harder than ever before to get new business.
For some, it feels like they are living “paycheck to paycheck” as they limp along until the next sale. Why is there such a struggle to get new leads?
Marketing today is rooted in the idea that with the right copy, the target audience can be interrupted, persuaded or manipulated into action. There seems to be an endless stream of marketing agencies that claim to have the “perfect funnel” or a quick fix to a business’ marketing needs. Unfortunately, they are successful. Not because it works, but because their product feeds on business owners’ pain.
As times goes on, consumers are building an immunity to the interruption-based marketing that is paired with persuasion and manipulation. Consumers now want what they want and that includes the hate for being told what to want. This resistance is being developed on a subcortical level, and will eventually lead to the downfall of today’s marketing tactics.
If consumers take a step back and acknowledge that all humans want to connect, they can begin to understand that there is hope for the marketers of tomorrow. Questions like; What makes an average person want to spend time with family and friends? What makes a conversation with another person in the check out line enjoyable? And more create the pathway to solving the problem.
Businesses ought to be considered like people, with personality, experiences, and a belief system. Each business has wants. It can help others. It has boundaries. Most of all, it wants to connect with others, whether that is with another business or a consumer.
Mike Decker, the principle-based marketer, is the founder of Kedrec and The Advisor Suite, two different marketing agencies, and the host of the podcast “Marketing With Principles”. Mike Decker suggests that all marketers must consider three principles for when a business wants to connect with its target consumer in a healthy and scalable manner.
The Principle of Change
Ever wondered why some people can facilitate change while others cannot? Why can some people break that bad habit, while others continue down the same path? What causes some to want to take action now and change while others push it off?
The principle of change suggests unless the pain of change is less than the pain of continuing on, a person will not change. People do not change to make their lives better. If that were the case, people would all eat well, exercise, hold boundaries, and have healthy relationships with successful careers.
However, people change based on pain mitigation. When someone wants something, they are telling themselves that if they get what they want, it will alleviate the perceived pain. Perception is reality. Success to some is perceived as more painful than their current state. Fast food today, to some, is perceived as less painful than saying no and eating better with the big picture in mind. Humans are emotional creatures that want to exist with as little pain as possible.
With a marketing campaign, it is important to not focus on benefits and describe how good their life will be. This is often perceived as manipulation and can be met with emotional resistance. It is also important to not focus on their pain points. There is enough fear in the news and media as it is. The framework must focus on what they want, through their eyes.
The Principle of Permission
If a stranger started talking to another out of the blue, would it come off as strange? Does it feel natural that in some cases people wish they had never started a conversation with someone after a few minutes? These are the same feelings felt by the consumer when a business tries to talk to them.
The principle of permission suggests that unless someone gives their permission to speak to them, it does not matter how loud the talk is, they are not listening. This is true when family, friends, and businesses try to talk.
Too often, businesses build their marketing campaigns as if they were asking someone to marry them on the first date. Getting permission from the consumer through strategically positioned content is the same as courting a significant other.
At this point, marketers and businesses may wonder how a business can “get permission” to speak to the consumer. Decker suggests three steps. First, advertise value that does not require any commitment. Second, exchange that value for an email or a placed cookie. If a cookie is placed, retarget them for a period of time until the email is obtained or enough time passes. Third, collect data and find out what they want. Once it is known what they want, such a business can then proceed to the principle of direction.
The Principle of Direction
The principle of direction suggests that unless what is offered, set expectations, and the next steps are clearly stated, there is a high probability that a business will lose the consumer. Decker believes it must be done in that order for the consumer to feel a safe progression to a decision. Ambiguity instills fear and uncertainty. Let the content be clear.
When a business has obtained permission from the consumer, and the business knows what they want, it is easier to enter back into the picture with a clear offer. There is less resistance because they have already signaled that this is something they want. At this point, it is about building mutual trust and respect until the time is right. Some people date for a few months before they get married while others date for years before that big day. Some consumers take a while before they are ready to buy while others make a quicker decision. Keep the communication going, nurture the relationship, and always be guided by the principles.
If a business wants to connect with their consumers on the same level that individuals want meaningful relationships, Decker postulates that they must be guided by these three principles. Businesses and agencies that want to learn more about these principles, or continue refining their marketing skills can listen to Decker’s new podcast, Marketing With Principles.
Company Name: The Advisor Suite // Marketing with Principles
Contact Person: Mike Decker
Email: Send Email
Country: United States