Marketing Ideas: Courtesy of the Elephant and Donkey

Elephant_and_DonkeyNo matter where you stand on the political spectrum—elephant, donkey or somewhere in between—there’s something businesses can learn from the 2016 U.S. Presidential campaign. Who can yell the loudest? Well, not quite, but close. In a world where competition continues to get tougher, businesses need to step up their marketing game. Here are a five business marketing ideas for right now…

Don’t stick with the same old song and dance.

Stand_Out_From_the_CrowdOften, politicians are ridiculed for overpromising and under-delivering. Even if you can deliver, it’s wise to shift your message now and then… take chances on a new look and feel, try something you’ve never tried, or stick with what works but vary it a little. Many businesses tremble at the thought of shaking things up. But if you don’t, your competitors will. So put away that brand bible from 1987 and let the creativity flow. You’ll be amazed at what ideas you and your team can spark.

Avoid saying things like, “You can trust me.”

Trust is critical in business. It’s also critical in politics. You know where I’m going with this… look at the “trust” track record for business and politics. Edelman’s 2015 Trust Barometer shows that trust in all institutions has “reached the lows of the Great Recession” in 2009. And basic psychology will teach you: When someone keeps telling you to trust them, you probably shouldn’t.

Gain trust with candid communication.

Companies consistently stand out for telling it like it is without all the jargon and clichés that confuse. According to Rittenhouse Rankings, transparency and simple language pave the path to outperforming your peers. So whether you’re creating a new marketing campaign about your products and services, or facing a PR challenge, this is an opportunity to gain trust through clear and honest communication.

Pay attention to existing customers first.

It’s tempting to want to break into a new market or go after an entirely new customer, but make sure you’re doing really well with what you’ve got. Just as the old adage says: market to your best customers first, your best prospects second and the rest of the world last. When you think about it from a financial perspective, it doesn’t make sense to lose current customers because you’re focusing all your efforts on acquiring new ones. Ultimately, you end up with the same number of customers, but your margins are lower because you spent a lot more money to gain a new customer than to keep a current one.

The ultimate business marketing idea:

Give them proof you’re the cat’s meow. We all know how people react when politicians tell everyone how great they are. Chest-pounding and big egos won’t get you customers, but a customer’s referral just might. Get your customers talking about you in a testimonial campaign, whether it’s in print, digital or video. Unadulterated, uncliched, unrivaled. If you’re going to toot your horn, the best strategy is to have someone else toot it for you.

Best of Days to You,

Audrey Ferrante
Ferrante & Associates, Inc.

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