Sometimes we all get stuck in a creative rut. With the small stresses each new day brings, it’s easy to get wrapped up in tasks and forget why we’re doing what we’re doing. That’s why every now and then, I like to refer to the “old greats” for inspiration.
Lately I’ve been revisiting How to Win Friends and Influence People, and one principle that’s really struck a chord with me is “Arouse in the other person an eager want.”
Hmm. That’s obviously what most marketers are aiming to do when they reach out toclients or prospects, but how many of us are actually achieving that goal?
As you may know, in January I started working as Director of Communications at an architecture firm. I recently received an e-newletter from a vendor that went something like this:
Check out our website!
We have an updated website!
Our workers are very experienced and take great pride in their work. We will be happy to give you a free estimate, so feel free to call us at <phone number> to schedule a time for us to bid.
We provide our customers with innovative materials…we offer quality installations…We are committed to enhancing your ability to achieve the goal of your building project through our desire to excel…
We would love for you to stop by our showroom. <Address and hours>
My first reaction was to delete this email. They were asking me to visit their website, but why would I want to take the time to do that? I am too busy trying to figure out how to drive people to my own company’s website! And what will they have to offer that others don’t?
Lots of people say they have high quality products and good customer service. These things just look like empty brags.
Finally, in the last paragraph, they mention my needs, the “ability to achieve the goal of your building project” but even that is vague and they start right back into talking about their own desires again.
So I started thinking, what does our newsletter look like? What do our proposals communicate? What messages are we sending our clients? While I am glad to say I think our messaging focuses on answering concerns of the client, I was able to think of ways that we could be even more client-centered.
Take a step back and look at your marketing message – your e-newsletter, your flyer, your website. What message are you sending? Is it focused on your company’s desires, or your clients’ needs?
After all, as humans, we are all focused on our own needs. No one is going to use my services or go to my website just because I tell them that I want them to. What value am I really offering? How can my business make things easier or more efficient or higher quality for them?
In an effort to keep this question at the front of my mind, I printed off this label and stuck it to the top of my work laptop (sorry boss!)
Have a great weekend everybody!