Why your best marketing tool is your customers’ pain!

Have you ever thought of using your potential customers’ pain to your advantage? By this, I don’t mean you should torture your leads into submission! Rather, if you focus on their pain – and tell them how you can take it away – you will suddenly become their best friend.

Think about the last time you had toothache. It’s a killer isn’t it? You can’t concentrate on anything but the throbbing pain and you’d give anything to be free of it. You book in to the dentist, they sort it out and they’re your hero.

Now consider how this applies to your marketing message.

When booking your dentist appointment, were you particularly bothered about finding out how long they’d been a dentist, or what university they went to? Or did you just want to know they could take your pain away?

Your biggest selling point will always be how you can solve a problem, improve a situation, make someone’s life easier – or in other words, remove a pain.

DON’T make this your ending strapline. Why would you want to bury your problem-solving prowess in a load of facts about you that, whilst they might add to your credibility and be really important to share, will not make people pick up the phone and ask for your help?

Look again at the information you give out to potential customers. Look at the introductory paragraph of your website’s home page, or your brochure. Now look at it through a potential customer’s eyes. What does your first line focus on? Are you telling them you’ve been in business for 20 years? That you’re the number one in your field?  Or are you telling them what you can do for them – save them time or stress, or help make them more profitable?

It’s all great information, but you should prioritise your main sales message.  If a customer can’t see immediately what’s in it for them to employ your services, you’ve already lost them.

Tell customers straight away how you can take their pain away and marketing suddenly becomes less painful!

Once you’ve got your marketing message right, the rest should fall into place.

Follow my six steps to marketing success here.

There’s also more in-depth guidance on refining your marketing in my book, Getting Down to Business.

You can find more marketing advice in Doug’s book, Getting Down to Business, available at just £9.37 from Amazon

Prepare yourself for the marketing battle

Modern marketing can really feel like a battle – you’re fighting to win the attention of potential customers, often against multiple enemies, or competitors.  So, you need to think like an army commander!

There are key elements to preparing for any battle, and each can be linked to the marketing process.

Know your enemy – do your market research

An army commander will gather intelligence on the enemy, through covert operations and observation of the enemy’s movements. He will try and ascertain the size of the threat, know their troupe numbers and fire-power, and understand their strategy. He will measure and evaluate – and consider how his own forces match up. This is exactly what you need to do with your market research. Make a few calls to competitors to see how they respond to an enquiry – see if they will send you a brochure, read their website, follow their social media channels, stalk them! Then, compare your marketing to theirs – are you on an equal footing? Is there anything they do better than you that you might need to improve on before going head-to-head? The more information you have about what you’re up against, the greater your chance of success.

Get your strategy in place

Once the intelligence is gathered, a commander will then plan his strategy according to the findings. This isn’t about replicating the enemy’s activity, but thinking of an appropriate response. How best can you use your own arsenal? You want to play to your strengths and take advantage of the enemy’s weaknesses. Where are you going to invest greater resources? A planned attack will always beat the scattergun approach, so make sure you plan how, where and when you will deploy your troops.

An army commander will strategically place his infantry and tanks; he’ll decide on the best time to send in the bombers; he’ll consider whether ships with rocket launchers are required.  In marketing, your infantry might be your website, seo and blogs, your tanks – your social media channels, your bombers are your email or postal campaigns etc.

In the same way that an army commander won’t rely solely on his infantry – you can’t rely solely on your website to bring you custom. It’s about using all the weapons at your disposal in a strategic way.

Prepare your arsenal – branding / marketing materials

Once the strategy is in place, you need to make sure you have enough fire-power and ammunition. In marketing, this means refining your branding and marketing message, and preparing all the materials you need to deliver your message effectively. Your marketing materials and content are your bombs and bullets – and your underlying strategy should ensure they hit their target.

Are you using the latest weaponry? In the same way that the army are constantly upgrading their kit and use the latest technology to their advantage – you need to stay abreast of the latest marketing trends.

Defend your territory – reactive marketing

A certain amount of battle strategy will be reactive – responding to enemy activity. If you know troops are being deployed to a particular area, you send your own troops to defend the territory. So, with marketing, if you know your competitors are prolific on Twitter, or have a particularly effective radio or TV ad campaign – you might want to work it into your strategy to ensure you have an equal presence.

Stay one step ahead – proactive marketing

To win a battle, however, you need to try and stay one step ahead. Think about what the enemy isn’t doing – are they missing a trick? Sometimes, you need to think outside the box. Doing something different could be the key to success, catching your enemy off-guard and gaining you new ground.

Evaluate and amend – measure and adjust your marketing

A good commander knows that any battle strategy has to be flexible. If something’s not working, you don’t keep throwing resources at it relentlessly! Instead, you learn from mistakes and adapt your strategy as you go along. Marketing is no different. If you’ve spent thousands on radio advertising but received no leads from it, you either need to change the advert, or re-allocate those funds to an alternative activity.

Employ advisors

Remember, you don’t need to do this alone! An army commander will employ specialist advisors and use the expertise of the team around him. In the same way, you can employ the help of marketing consultants or business advisors to guide and inform you.

You can find more marketing advice in Doug’s book, Getting Down to Business, available at just £9.37 from Amazon. Click here to buy.

You can find more marketing advice in Doug’s book, Getting Down to Business, available at just £9.37 from Amazon