Are you trying to sell a complex product to a complicated customer in a crowded marketplace and just coming up short?
Many marketing campaigns overreach by trying to sell the product. The success of that strategy is directly proportional to the consumer’s understanding of the product and readiness to purchase it. The more complex the consumer’s needs and the proposed solution are, the more likely that prospects will fail to make the leap from interest to investment.
To bridge this gap, Greg has coined the term “proximate marketing.” Consumers engage with a brand through a series of stages. These steps can include conceptual understanding, emotional resonance, personal encounters, and agenda alignments. A proximate marketing strategy leads the consumer along a path to the product by selling the next (proximate) engagement. Mapping the probable paths along which various audience can be led to invest in the product allows the brand to develop the appropriate messages, assets, and presentation skills for each location on that map.
Invite Greg to speak to your group or consult directly with your team to develop a proximate marketing strategy for your brand.
Can She Hear You?
Probably not. Most of us, not just young people, now live in self-created, customized digital bubbles. We only listen to and look at what we already know and like. Unless you have the resources of a global brand, it’s tough to get inside enough bubbles to be heard. And if you’re reading this, you probably aren’t a global brand. So, how do you cut through the digital noise and get attention?
As an alternative to more digital noise or a zero-sum information war, Greg Smith uses the term “proximate marketing” to describe a humanistic, consumer-centered marketing strategy. Plot an engagement path to move your audience from brand encounter to brand evangelism. Position your marketing dollars along this path, and train your salespeople to draw customers or followers along it.
Make Your Customer the Hero in Your Marketing
Too many marketing efforts make the product (or worse, the provider) the hero of their marketing narrative. It seems direct: sell the product on its features, benefits, and pedigree. But marketing that genuinely engages the consumer is a story about the consumer. Specifically, it’s a story in which the consumer, not the product, is the protagonist. The story is about the customer’s success; the product merely contributes to that success. The worst marketing narratives flip this story, making the brand the hero and the customer the sidekick.
Writing those sort of marketing narratives requires deconstructing the relationship between the product and the consumer and rebuilding it with gifted storytelling and emotionally engaging art.
Invite Greg to speak to your group or consult directly with your team to develop a marketing narrative that makes a hero out of your customer.
Why Isn’t Your Marketing Producing the Sales You Expected?
There may be many reasons, but consider the problem of ambient noise and sound intelligibility. In a quiet room, you can understand what someone says even if they whisper. In a loud place, they have to shout to be understood over the background noise. Being heard is relative: it’s not how loud you speak, but how much louder your message is than the ambient noise.
Now consider how loud the digital space is. A billion shouting voices, a billion screaming messages for everything from political candidates to pizza to pills. A billion bloggers blogging and tweeters tweeting. A billion links begging for clicks.
Why aren’t your blog posts and email blasts bringing you the business you want? Your message isn’t loud enough to be intelligible over the ambient noise. So, what do you do? Shout louder? Post more?
Let Greg Smith show your team how to use a proximate marketing strategy to get customers and followers into quieter spaces where they can hear a more intelligible message.
What, Exactly, Are You Selling?
An old marketing adage is that “people don’t want to buy a quarter inch drill—they want a quarter inch hole.” The point is that marketers often make the mistake of selling products, while consumers don’t want products. They are looking for solutions.
Too many branding efforts mistake means for ends. They tell the story of their company and product, and then try to squeeze the consumer in as a supporting character. In reality, it’s the customer’s story that matters, and the brand that plays a supporting role.
You’re not in the drill business—you’re in the hole business. And that changes everything: your brand story, your marketing and sales processes, even your business model. How do you frame, or even relaunch, your brand to effectively sell holes?
Invite Greg to speak to your group or consult with your team about how to build your brand by shifting the narrative and telling a more compelling story.