I had been reading a Dave Barry article recently about his trip to China to cover the Olympics there. He shared a story about going to the Great Wall of China and seeing a T-shirt vendor. Every few seconds, she would look at Dave and yell, “Hello! T-shirt!” He would decline and a few seconds later she would again yell, “Hello! T-shirt!” This went on for the entire time he stood there. He ended with the comment that she had her marketing strategy and she was sticking with it.
I first laughed because I thought the story was so funny. The second laugh was a bit sheepish because I started to think how often that takes place in the market. We all have great marketing ideas. We figure the market is just a bit slow in accepting our ideas. We hang on to things even though they’re unsuccessful because, hey, it’s such a great idea. Unfortunately, we’re the only ones who think so.
When it comes to marketing, the final arbiter of taste is always the consuming public. If your marketing falls on deaf ears, it’s worse than no marketing at all. Sometimes, it can turn your clients against you. So how do you create a marketing plan that works? Take a few lessons from the world of direct marketing.
• Test everything. Before you roll out that new marketing campaign, test it on a smaller sample of your target market. The information you receive is invaluable.
• Measure your results. Even though you think the marketing is a winner, measure your results to see what your buyers think of it. Are you getting a better response than the last campaign?
• If it works, leave it alone. Sometimes we get bored with our marketing long before our prospects do. If your current marketing is still drawing prospects in, do0n’t change it. Spend that money on something else.
Sometimes, it is best to stick with your marketing strategy. But test and measure before you do. Annoying your prospects won’t get you new clients.