This is bold coming from a marketer. Now… let’s unpack that statement.
Why is most marketing a waste of money? It has a lot to do with ego. We as humans are born with this sense that everything revolves around us, and our parents keep reinforcing that notion for us as we grow up. So, naturally when we become adults, we keep going through life with a self-centered mindset that spills over into our business.
When we start a business, we try and sell ourselves, our capabilities, and our solutions to others. And when they don’t buy, we are left wondering why these people fail to connect with us, how awesome we are and how amazing our products and services are? We keep throwing money at it and go bigger with advertising and aimless marketing to no avail. And therein lies the problem.
Until we realize that no one cares how awesome we are, and we acknowledge how valuable they are, we are not going to sell anything to anyone.
It’s all in how we phrase our value to others. And for as long as I’ve been a marketer, I see business owners fall into the same pattern repeatedly; I know best and my products and services are best, and you should buy from ME.
Donald Miller, the author of Building a Story Brand, said it best that businesses “fail to focus on the aspects of their offer that will help people survive and thrive.
If there is one takeaway from this blog, it’s that your brand message is more important than everything else. If you don’t clarify it so that people will listen by making them the focal point—or hero of your story, you are going to have a tough time convincing anyone to buy from you.
So how do you fix that you ask?
Excellent question! Here is what you need to do.
1. Know who you’re talking to. The first thing you need to do is identify who you are talking to. This audience identification has been preached to death by everyone and I still see skepticism oozing from their eyes when I bring it up to clients. Seriously, how much do you think your odds would improve to have a meaningful conversation with someone if you knew everything there is to know about them. It’s like being able to read their minds. So, why not invest the time to know your audience so that you can craft messaging that resonates with them right from the start.
2. Clarify your message. If you make it hard for people to understand your message, you force them to burn unnecessary calories. People are inherently wired to resist burning too many calories. That is why we have an obesity problem. If your message does not tell your audience how you can help them survive and thrive quickly you have zero chance to convince them to buy from you. Building A Story Brand beautifully outlines how you should structure your message and I recommend you invest the time to read that book for it is a masterclass in how to make your message irresistible to your audience.
3. Tell a compelling story. If you don’t have a captivating story people will tune out immediately. Just think about it for a second. Since you were a child the only thing that captivated your full attention was a good story. You would stay up late to listen to your Mom or Dad read you a good night story and you refused to go to sleep if you could not hear what happened at the end. You see where I’m going with this? We have been passing down stories for generations and we are still mesmerized by them. Why not use the power of storytelling to your advantage and make your brand irresistible to your audience?
4. Help as many people as you can. The only enduring stories are about men and women who have been revered throughout history. Why? Because they triumphed over a challenge that many were struggling with. If you position your brand and make your mission helping as many people as you can with your products and services, you will gain a cultlike following. Just look at the most successful business models in the world. They make a little money from a lot of people. Why? Because they have a solution that helps alleviate a challenge that a lot of people are facing. It does not matter what you are selling if it is positioned to help many people either directly or by extension.
Now you’ll read these four steps and say, it is easier said than done, and you would be right! It is not easy, and I don’t think you should do it yourself. Why? Because we tend to revert to what we are comfortable with. That means we are going to fall back into old habits of talking about ourselves again.
Hire a marketing consultant. Work with them to clarify your brand message. They are always looking from the outside in, and they can identify issues better than you can self-diagnose from the inside. Trust the process and stick with it. You must go against your entrepreneurial tendencies to rush things. It will take time to develop a good brand message that resonates and there are going to be failures along the way since this is not a science and societal tendencies shift. A good branding and marketing partner will help you overcome those and create a brand message that helps elevate your business.
If you need assistance, contact us today. We have very limited client seats available for 2022. We are very selective of the types of projects we take on for we want to ensure that we are a good fit for the companies who entrust their branding and marketing efforts with us. Schedule your free consultation today to determine if we are a good fit for each other.