I was talking with a colleague recently and he mentioned an article he read in the Boston Globe about email marketing… “Do you think email marketing is dead? “he asked me. “Social media is the thing, now? That’s what people pay attention to, right?” Without skipping a beat I said, “No, email marketing is still alive and well. People will pay attention to what is relevant to them.”
Yes, it’s important to include social media as a component of your marketing plan. What! You don’t have a marketing plan!? Check out my previous blog post – Do I really need a marketing plan?. Now where was I… Yes, getting your message out to your audience. Getting our message read by our (primary) audience involves using appropriate communication channels, such as social media, but it also includes creating relevant content.
What does that mean? That means putting yourself in your customer’s (or client’s) shoes and creating content from their point of view. You are problem solvers. And, focus on your benefits, not your company’s features. Okay, let me give you a couple of examples.
Does the following sound familiar?
XYZ Wedding Photography studio specializes in weddings and portraits … award-winning … specialize in artistic weddings … boutique wedding photography studio. Blah blah blah.
What does all this even mean?
Potential brides want to know that you care about them. What can you do for her (the bride)? She wants to know that you will capture her wedding day flawlessly for her to reflect on and share with her family, now and in the future. She really doesn’t care about all of the awards you’ve received. Really. All the bride wants to know is that you will take care of her and help make her day a day to remember. And, your portfolio should be exceptional, too.
Professional printers. I’m sure you have seen a message like this before:
As a professional printing company, our services include Booklet Binding, Collating, Cutting, Design & Document Creation, Die Cutting, Digital Output of Files.
Blah blah blah.
Okay, so what does this mean?
Instead of starting out listing your services, why not talk about what you can do for graphic designers (freelancers) and agencies. Do you meet with clients to learn about their design challenges and brainstorm with them about how to identify effective solutions? Do you ask about what their needs are when working with a professional printer? Do you ask what they need?
I guess my rambling is the long way of saying that, yes, your audience will still read your emails or whatever you are sending them, if the message is relevant (from the customer or client’s point of view). Let them know that you understand their problem and can provide a solution.
And, once you create that relevant message, re-use your content as much as possible. You may need to re-format the message depending on how you use it, but you can use the same message when doing social media (e.g. Facebook), on your web site (writing in chunks and using good headlines and bulleted statements) or direct mail.
Just remember when developing your message, you must be customer focused and always ask WIIFM (what’s in it for me).