Marketing Techniques You Shouldn’t Try

June 11, 2013

Marketing techniques not to try

Networking, cold-calling, e-mail blasting, blogging… There are many marketing techniques out there. But unless you’re savvy you may be waiting in vain for results. In his new book, DO IT! MARKETING (AMACOM), marketing coach David Newman discusses many things marketers do, but shouldn’t. Here are four marketing techniques you should avoid:

  1. Don’t tell customers how great you are. “We have great service. We offer great value. Stop in for a great selection.” Sounds great? Not to customers. What customers hear is: “Blah-blah-blah. That’s a whole lotta you. Where’s the stuff about me?” Newman’s point: “Good marketing is not about your business! It’s about how your business is different, valuable, and meaningful to customers.” Instead, clearly convey what makes your business the only choice for your chosen customers. For starters, give yourself the So-What? Test. Take a look at each of your marketing statements in your ads, in your brochures, and on your website. For each statement, can you come up with a compelling value-based answer to the question, “So what?”
  2. Don’t fall into the marketing-speak trap. It’s tempting to pad your marketing messages with exaggerated claims, empty promises, impressive-sounding but mind-boggling jargon, and catchy but meaningless phrases. Resist! Don’t follow the crowd. If you want to be taken seriously by customers, gain their trust, and earn their respect, stop talking marketing speak. Instead, do your homework. Read the latest industry and regional news and attend the events. Then talk to your customers. Learn their priorities, issues, pressures, and challenges.
  3. Don’t follow up excessively.  “If you’re focused exclusively on prospects who are actively seeking to solve the problem you’re positioned to solve, you’ll get their attention on the first or second attempt,” says Newman.
  4. Don’t dumb it down for social media. It’s a common fear among those venturing into social media marketing. If you give away your very best insights, strategies, or tools—the “secret sauce” in the products or services that people pay you for—you will diminish the demand for them. So, you post a second-rate article, a spec sheet with a missing bullet, or a video with only three of your 10 key ideas. What happens? You look dumb and lose potential customers.

Adapted from DO IT! MARKETING: 77 Instant-Action Ideas to Boost Sales, Maximize Profits, and Crush Your Competition by David Newman (AMACOM).

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About The Author

Christina Parisi is Director of Digital Content at the American Management Association. Previously she was an Executive Editor at AMACOM Books and the Director of AMA Self-Studies.

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