You know that there is no value in saying, "Our product offers great value...", right? The alcohol industry has this concept down to a tee. You'll never hear an advert that says, "Johnnie Walker Private Collection Whisky, So valuable.. it will cost you an arm and a leg". Instead, they show you visuals of successful gentlemen who follow a lifestyle that suggests value. Your goal should be to suggest what makes your product or service valuable without actually using the word value. The moment you mention the word value, you automatically sound like you're lying. How many LinkedIn inboxes do you get that tell you how they have a valuable offer for you? And you never respond. Why? Because there is no value in saying the word value.
Ever received one of those, "Good day, is this [Insert Name]? I'm Mary from EliteMobile... Is this a convenient time to talk?". No, Mary, it's not! Honestly speaking it's never a convenient time to give anybody a random sales call. Cold calling is outdated. Customers are now using apps like TrueCaller to avoid spam calls. The amount of money you waste on dead-end phone calls could be better spent generating leads online. That way you can find people who are actually interested in what you have to offer, have them opt-in and schedule the call for a "convenient" time. So instead of the cold-call, you now have a lukewarm potential. Somebody that you're 99% more likely to sell to than the person you're bothering with your unsolicited attempt. It's 2020! Get with the program!
Before you go wild on your marketing strategy it's really important to understand which arena you're playing in. Whether you are taking the intent-based marketing or interruption marketing approach. The obvious question would be, what is the difference? An example of Intent-Based marketing would be when you search for a "restaurant near me" on Google. This is when a customer is actively searching for your product or service. Interruption marketing is that TV ad, billboard or random sales call that catches you off-guard. However, social media marketing has slightly blurred the lines. By correctly using targeting, you can interrupt customers who sort of have the intent to buy what you might be selling. Ever been looking at a potential holiday destination and when you get on Facebook you find ads offering getaway packages? How does this all work?
Why do we equate a person's proficiency in English to their level of intelligence? In a country where there are more than 11 official languages, it's weird how we've chosen English as the language to measure a person's intelligence. Reality is that many South Africans replicate the grammar of their home language and translate it into English. When you hear a tannie say "That are true" or a magogo start a sentence with "Me I was..." it's not because they're stupid, it's because they are trying to speak English but in their home language.
What makes Nando's so relatable on social media? Apart from the fiery personality and tone they always have, the fact that they always speak to relevant topics is key to their success. Instead of bombarding us with unsolicited ads of how tasty their chicken is or latest specials, they always find a way to include themselves in hot and sometimes daring conversations. You might post a negative review and instead of getting the robotic "Dear valued customer, we have escalated your concern to.. blah blah blah" type responses, they might make light of the situation in a relatable and more person-to-person manner. Many brands fail to achieve this type of success online because they don't understand the power of context in the world of content.
So economists say that 50 bucks in a first world country and 50 bucks in a third world country are not the same. The marketer in me finds it really hard to grasp. What we're in fact saying is that one piece of paper that has gone through an identical printing process and perhaps has a different colour scheme and picture of a different dead guy on it has a higher value than another. The fact that some guy in New York or London is paying 5 bucks for a Big Mac meal and I have to pay 70 bucks is mind-boggling. When I'm standing in front of a cashier at the airport and I give the lady 50 bucks and she gives back less of a "more valuable" currency feels weird. It reminds me of the same feeling I got when I'd buy R12 airtime from a spaza-shop for R13.
How often do you use your cellphone? Your Tablet? Okay.. and your laptop/Computer? Let me use these three examples to show you the difference between a feature and a product and the risk of mistaking the two. This can be the difference between success and failure in launching a new business. Your cellphone and laptop are great products. Your tablet, on the other hand, is a great feature. Why? When you want to do anything mobile, you'll grab your cellphone intuitively. When you want to write up a proposal, you naturally use your laptop. But most of us got tablets because it was just something cool to have. A great feature. Features are a short-term play. Like fidget spinners, hoverboards, selfy sticks... all features that will make you a quick buck, however, you can't build a long-lasting business based on a feature. Long-lasting businesses are built on great products.
First of all, can we just lay down one fact? Newspapers were a communication innovation. But magazines are just glossy newspapers. This is exactly why it seems print magazines are dying quicker than newspapers. However, newspapers also face the same fate. Mainstream media survives off inefficiency in communication. The unique selling point of the most popular magazines and newspapers is giving exclusive news. But what happens when we get the news faster than they can print it?
Contrary to popular belief using hashtags on Instagram, as a business, can affect you negatively. Think about it. Say for instance you are running a graphic design agency and use #GraphicDesigner, guess who else is using that hashtag? Other graphic designers. The role of hashtags is for the Instagram platforms algorithm to be able to link like-minded profiles. Your potential customers may not be using the same hashtags so you might end up having your posts being served to other businesses offering the same services instead. Almost like trying to sell potatoes to other potato farmers. Hashtags are for the consumer, as a business there are other tactics to use. Here are a few.
Uber Eats & MrD aren't so fun to use when it's not really an option and you're kind of forced to use it because it's recommended that you stay indoors. Social distancing! Food delivery services serve the purpose of convenience. You know, for those evenings when you're lazy to cook. But restaurants are about more than just food. It's about the experience of sitting across the table from loved ones or friends and sharing a meal around other complete strangers. It's more of a social experience than it is about nutrition. Socialisation is such an integral part of being human. I'm sure even the introverts would agree that staying indoors is only fun when it's a choice. Right now most restaurant owners know how it feels to own a Wimpy. Guys, what happened to Wimpy though? It's always empty even without social distancing, but that's a story for another day. Anyway, Uber Eats & MrD should enjoy the spike in sales for now, but when things go back to normal, hope we're all ready to wait in line to be seated at our favourite restaurants.