Spice Up Your Marketing!
Marketing, just like food, needs spicing up. Bland marketing has the same effect on customers as eating a poorly-seasoned meal at a high-end restaurant.
They were expecting much more and are extremely disappointed. Take an honest look at how you are promoting your product or service. Is your marketing exciting and satisfying, or do your potential customers walk away unimpressed?
Spices offer a creative way to view marketing. The new trend in nutrition is to add more spices to foods–for example, adding chipotle to chocolate–not just for the taste, but for increased health and improved well-being. Did you know that chipotle, a smoke-dried jalapeno pepper, is proving to be a weapon against certain cancers, diabetes and heart disease?
If this makes you seriously consider adding spices to your diet, then you should also explore how spicing up your marketing could change the way customers you are targeting respond to your advertising. There is a three-fold parallel that marketers should act upon. Just as spices add Heat, Health and Happiness to eating pleasure, smart marketing can do the same for your business.
- Heat: This is the pleasurable “kick” that your taste buds experience when just the right spices are blended into your food. You come away from that meal with memories that linger and, most likely, you will want that meal again. Marketing that has a pleasurable “kick” will make your prospects enthusiastic about what you are selling. It will prep them to buy, and could have them coming back for more.
- Health: Spices produce amazing health benefits, such as lowering blood pressure, reducing the risk of heart attack and improving digestion. If your product or service can make people’s lives better, more comfortable or more productive, then your marketing needs to express that boldly and clearly. Once customers realise that what you are offering can make a positive difference in their lives, they will get excited and respond to your calls to action.
- Happiness: A meal prepared with tantalising spices leaves diners not only full but satisfied. Moreover, they are happy with their experience. When your marketing meets a specific need that your prospect is trying to fill, you not only satisfy him in the short run, but pave the way for that prospect to become a happy and loyal customer.
How can you “Spice Up” your Marketing?
Too often, businesses attempt to copy advertising that is already out there. You might want to take this strategy with a grain of salt–no pun intended. Copying the methods of other companies often results in bland, ineffectual marketing. Customers grow weary from being approached the same way over and over again. They tend to tune out these ads. Hence, the expense that you invest in imitating what everyone else is doing will probably not get you the ROI you were anticipating.
Instead, brainstorm with your team to see how you can “spice up” your marketing. This does not mean having “in your face” hard sell ads or trashing competitors. It does mean keeping the “Three H’s” in mind.
Start by integrating compelling action verbs, creative imagery and memorable phrases into your marketing to describe what your company’s product or service can do for your customers. Highly visual and interactive web marketing “heats up” their senses. YouTube videos and mini webinars are great venues for your marketing arsenal. Use them to demonstrate how one of your products works or simply to provide free helpful information to potential customers. By doing so, you immediately activate their thinking on multiple levels;
- You demonstrate that you care about their particular situation.
- You prove that you can solve a problem that they might have.
- You introduce your company/product/service in an intriguing and engaging way.
- You start building their trust by being straightforward and honest about your services.
The more senses and emotions that you trigger with your marketing, the more likely prospects will make the decision to buy. One caution, however: The purpose of marketing with “heat” is far more than simply trying to grab customer attention. Rather, like spices, your marketing should create an irresistible joy in your prospects that prompts them to respond enthusiastically to what you are offering.
It is critical that you focus on knowing your potential customer’s needs and explain through your marketing how you can meet those needs. In order to accomplish this, you must first find a way to get them to talk about the problem they need solved. If your marketing is interactive, you can probe with key questions and get honest feedback from your prospects. Assuming that you have isolated the demographics of your target customers, start reaching out to them personally with online questionnaires, email queries or phone and post card surveys. Encourage their cooperation by offering a sample or coupon upon submission of their responses. Your investment of time and money into this is well worth it because the answers you receive will enable you to fine-tune your marketing to meet the specific needs that they have expressed.
Businesses that pay close attention this way to the “health” of their prospects are rewarded with repeat customers and positive referrals.
Happiness is a state of mind that stems from reduced anxiety and increased self-esteem. It is a sign of contentment and well-being. How do you reduce prospect anxiety about trying your product or service? Offer both emotional and logical reasons to trust your company. Reduce purchasing anxiety by providing stellar customer service from your very first contact with your target customers. Create marketing that opens your prospects’ eyes to your top-quality merchandise and personalised service, share testimonies from satisfied clients, give your prospects iron-clad money-back guarantees, and, through specials and coupons, allow them to experience what you are offering. As prospects interact with your marketing and your company, at some point they will realize that they have enough information to make an informed decision. The more control they feel they have, the higher their self-esteem, and the more likely they will buy. They experience happiness when they purchase your product and discover that it is exactly what they were looking for.
By spicing up your marketing with these “Three H’s,” you will get the attention of your prospective buyers by immediately involving them through their senses. This makes them more receptive as you demonstrate how you are the “go to” company to solve their problem. Best of all, “spiced up” marketing tends to motivate prospects to buy, resulting in a base of happy customers who keep coming back for more.