What Makes a Good Marketer a Great Marketer?

“Good marketing makes the company look smart. Great marketing makes the customer feel smart.” – Joe Chernov

You have a well-defined niche, know your audience, and have sold some products to them. But now you want to take your marketing to the next level. To move from being a good marketer to a great marketer requires effort, commitment, marketing knowledge, and the following qualities.

Being Ethical

Ensure that any product, service, or content that you promote is ethical. This goes far beyond legality. Remember, just because something is legal doesn’t mean it’s ethical. While most of the time something that is not ethical will also be illegal, the reverse is not true. Ethics for each business person and business entity will vary depending on their values and beliefs. What’s important is that you walk the talk and practice what you preach.

Being Authentic and Real

To be truly authentic you need to know who you are and what you stand for. You’re unique as a person and as a marketer so once you find your voice, don’t change it – just do more of it. Be more authentic more often.

Demonstrating Honesty

Demonstrate your honesty by sticking to what you say you’ll do and delivering what you promise. If you write a review that misrepresents a product, fails to meet your own promised deadlines, or even start a blog post with a headline that is deceiving, word gets around. Social media can spread bad news and views quickly, and it won’t take long for you to be seen as dishonest or untrustworthy. Show how honest you are by not misleading your customers and prospects.

Staying Informed About Your Niche

A great marketer makes sure they stay informed, keeping up-to-date on the news, hot topics, trends, laws and information regarding their industry at all times. The more informed you are, the more you can stay ahead of coming trends and new technologies, creating a situation where you can be a major thought leader within your industry.

Being Empathetic to Your Clients

A great marketer cares about their customers. They have passion about their products and/or services because of what they do for their customer. They strive to understand their audience and to demonstrate the care they have for them in their actions, products and services.

Being a Savvy Business Person

A great marketer is able to look at things from different angles to come up with useful products and services as well as interesting and compelling campaigns. Someone who is savvy knows how to listen to their customers and create a product based on what they learn, as well as turn it on its ear to create something amazing and new.

Always Prepared

A great marketer is always prepared for changes in the industry and knowledgeable about what their customers want and need to solve their problems. On the technical side they are also ready for the traffic from a new campaign or publicity in order to avoid crashes and other technical problems.

Always Pushing for Improvement

Finally, a great marketer is focused on always improving. They check their metrics, study the numbers, and run A/B testing on every new campaign, seeking to always improve and become better.

Multiple Niche Marketing: 3 Basic Mistakes

Releasing products in multiple niches is one way your business can spread risk. Instead of relying on one source of cashflow, multiple streams of income can make your business immune to any adverse changes within one niche. However trying to have a presence in multiple niches also has its challenges. Here are three basic mistakes unsuccessful niche marketers make.

Lack of Research

Before you enter any niche it’s important that you perform research in two areas. You need to research your audience so you know what they want to achieve, the problems they face, and how you can reach them. You also need to research the products and services that are already available to them and decide if there are any opportunities you can take advantage of. Lack of research will delay how soon you can make a profit or may even cause you to enter a niche with a plan that will not work.

Continual Learning

Ideally you should have some expertise related to the niche you plan to enter. However being present in multiple niches means it is likely your level of expertise will vary with each niche. To be able to offer something of value you need to study and work on increasing your niche-related knowledge. This is where you can make the mistake of spending too much time studying and too little time monetising what you have learned. If you have researched your audience you will have a better idea of the problems they face and should be able to identify the solutions they need. Concentrate on these and learn how to implement them, test them, and then build an infoproduct around the methods that work.

Diversifying too soon

From a purely business point of view you should start with the niche that offers the quickest profit. Establish a presence, release a product and reach the point where you have a sustainable, consistent cashflow in this niche. Only then should you look to repeat this process in another niche. Unfortunately, if there are delays to becoming established in a niche or your product underperforms it can be tempting to abandon or sideline this part of your business and try again in another niche. Resist this course of action. It’s more likely that you will make better progress working on making your first niche profitable than devoting your efforts to a new venture.

If you make any of the above basic mistakes it’s likely you will find yourself with a number of unprofitable websites. To be a successful multiple niche marketer you need to know how to identify a profitable niche, be able to offer products your audience finds useful,and have a process that enables you to continue making money from a niche once you have moved on to another.

Metrics To Measure Your Marketing ROI

All marketing incurs expenses in some form. Often it’s in terms of money, but even free marketing requires an investment in time and effort. To determine your marketing return on investment (ROI) you need to understand what your goals are. It’s important when setting your marketing goals that you are very specific about what you want to accomplish overall, as well as what you want to accomplish with each individual marketing campaign.

Ensure The Metrics You Measure Match Your Goals

Whatever of your goal, it’s important that you have a corresponding metric that you can measure. For example, if you want to measure whether you have generated leads from a particular campaign, you will have to be able to see where the leads came from, which of your efforts produced the leads, and which did not.

Review Your Numbers Before A New Campaign

Check your metrics before you start a new campaign. You should know how your business is doing before starting a campaign and how well any previous campaigns worked. For example, if you want to get more subscribers and you have a campaign planned to do that, look at where you are right now regarding subscribers so you know your starting point. Look at how many subscribers on average you gained each day, week, or month in the 90 days prior to starting the campaign. This way you will be able to tell how effective the campaign is.

Check Basic Metrics on a Regular Basis

The basic metrics you should always be looking at are: number of unique visitors, bounce rates, click-through rates, and conversions. For social media accounts like Twitter you should monitor retweets and click-throughs, and for Facebook track your reach, likes, shares, click-throughs, and comments. If some of these metrics are stagnant it can indicate the types of changes and marketing campaigns you should be addressing.

Understand Changes in Your Numbers

By tracking metrics even when you are not running campaigns you will be able to spot changes unrelated to campaigns. You may find that a certain type of blog post increases interactions and leads to an increase in subscribers. You may find that an event that spreads as a topic on a social media platform leads to more subscribers. If you are tracking and monitoring all the time you’ll know whether improvements in results are due to specific marketing efforts or come from elsewhere. With this insight you can allocate your efforts to the most effective methods.

Understanding your real return on marketing investment depends on you understanding all the factors that go into each individual campaign. You can only do this by tracking all the relevant factors, including financial costs, the time and effort it takes, and the results you obtain.

Earn Social Proof If You Want To Market Online

Facebook Likes and LinkedIn sharesSocial proof is about building trust with your customers and potential customers, as well as showing that you’re a reliable and honest business person. It’s a factor in people judging how reliable you are and can even influence your website’s page rank in search engines.

Be Social

Newbie marketers often get the balance wrong when using social media to market themselves. My grandmother often used the saying “Self praise is no recommendation” and it’s true that some people can be suspicious of those who blow their own trumpet. Being social should not be about shouting how great you are from the rooftops. It should be about helping your community, showing yourself to be honest and trustworthy, and displaying what you have to offer and it being so good that it impresses people enough for them to share it with others.

Friends as influencers

Your friends, colleagues and acquaintances can be influenced by what you are doing, saying and buying. The actions of the influencers in your life probably help determine the actions you might make. Studies have shown that your closest friends influence not only your happiness but also your net worth. If you can spread the word about your products and/or services via the right connections on social media to one of your most ideal clients, and they share, it will likely end up in front of more of your ideal clients.

Encourage Word-of-Mouth

Most people will trust word-of-mouth recommendations for products and services more than they trust any other type of marketing or advertising. I remember being more impressed by a student’s account of his success than I was of his mentor’s assurances that internet marketing was a great way to make money. If someone you trust says they found value in something that you are also interested in, you’ll probably be more likely to look into it with a favourable frame of mind. The challenge is to present your product or service in a way that encourages word-of-mouth. This means it should be interesting, impressive, and easy to pass on.

Be an active participant

Growing your social proof happens through interactions on social media, blogging, and participating in your community. Being an active participant will go far in creating the social proof you need to be seen as a trustworthy source of information. The more people who friend you, follow you, and spread a positive impression of you by retweeting your information and quoting you, the more positive social proof you will gain.

Link your online presence

Creating branded social media accounts with a consistent image and profile will help people recognise and know who you are. Mention and link to your articles and blog posts in social media and once a person reads, enjoys, likes, shares, and comments on something you have written, they’ll be more likely to see your work appear when searching online in your niche. The more of your work they see and enjoy or find useful, the more likely it is they’ll share.

It’s well known that customers are more likely to tell others if they have a bad experience with a product or service than if it was good. However social media seems to have led to a shift towards positive reporting. Today, a person who likes something may share their opinion online with hundreds or even thousands of people. Which can only lead to the conclusion that earning social proof is too big an online marketing opportunity to ignore. Building a presence in social media that has others recommending you to their friends can really grow your business.

Hook and Promise – The Foundation of Your Effective Marketing Message

Fish-hookIf you’ve ever found it difficult to create an effective sales letter, sales video, or opt-in message here is a new perspective that can help you make them more relevant to your market, increase the value you are offering, and make more sales or get more opt-ins.

Whatever your marketing message is it will be more effective if it is based on a hook and a promise.

A hook is that part of your message that grabs a prospect’s attention and makes them want to continue reading, watching, or listening. It needs to be relevant to their problem and convey a benefit to the prospect. It also needs to appear new. You don’t want your prospect thinking they’ve seen or heard this before.

An example of a hook is something like:

“If you’ve been online for years and never made a dime, there’s a new software that guarantees to build you a six figure income in only 4 months.”

If a prospect has been unable to make money online for the past few years, no matter what they’ve tried, it grabs their attention because it’s aimed at them and their specific problem.

It’s also an offer they would not have seen before because it says the software is new.

If you want another example of a hook take a look at the first sentence of this post. If you’ve read this far you’ve been hooked!

A promise is the part of your message that tells the prospect about the benefit they’ll gain if they continue watching, reading or listening to your message. It should include a specific result they’ll get from continuing to consume your message and also show or imply what their life will be like after you have resolved an urgent problem or fulfilled a deep desire they have.

Using the same example again:

“If you’ve been online for years and never made a dime, there’s a new software that guarantees to build you a six figure income in only 4 months.”

The promise is that the software guarantees to build a six figure income in only 4 months. Notice this is a specific result.

In case you’re wondering, yes there is another example of a promise embedded in the first sentence of this post, although it could be improved by being more specific.

Develop the hook and promise based on what your market wants, not on what you think they want. Once you have these two foundations for your marketing you can make them the focus of your sales message. This will make it more effective.

If you write a sales letter based on a hook and promise before you even begin creating a product or service and use it as a guide for what you create, it will also make what you offer more relevant and of more value to your market.

The simple marketing principle that won me an Oscar

Oscar standing in front of an Irlen syndrome websiteNetworking with local businesses has been an important part of building the web design part of our business over the past eight years. As part of this approach I joined a local BNI Chapter recently.

The BNI (Business Network International) is designed to encourage business by regularly passing referrals, mainly between the members of local groups called Chapters.

Each meeting runs according to an agenda with a set number of items and steps. Although this may sound a bit dry and regimented it can still be run with a relaxed but professional approach, which is what we manage to do at our Chapter. Consequently, although we are one of the smaller groups in our area we are managing to punch above our weight and generate a good amount of business.

One of the agenda items is the opportunity for each business representative to stand up and give a 60 second presentation about their company, talk about the business they are looking for and how the Chapter members may be able to help them.

To keep us on our toes and as a bit of fun a gold statuette is awarded each week for the best presentation, the winner being decided by the previous week’s winner. Inevitably the statuette has become known as the Oscar.

Usually I have a clear idea about the topic of my presentation each week, but last Thursday morning I arrived at the venue in two minds as to what to speak about. Upon entering the building I met other Chapter members and signed in.

As I did so others were remarking on a coloured plastic overlay that one of the members was holding against a sheet of text. He was explaining that this simple sheet helped him with his dyslexia, making the text easier to read.

I have encountered this effect before, first when I was in teaching and some of the pupils used coloured overlays to improve their reading, and secondly when we built a website for people with Irlen syndrome. Noting how others in the Chapter had never heard of this before I decided to make it the topic of my 60 second presentation and mentioned the work we had done and the experience we had in building a dyslexia and Irlen syndrome friendly website.

What I had not realised was that the member with the plastic overlay was the previous week’s Oscar winner and when it came to awarding it this time he decided to give it to me. Simply because I had decided to speak on a topic that had personal relevance to him.

It wasn’t until later that I realised I had simply followed a basic marketing principle that you need to put into practice if you want to be successful: Find out what matters to your market and make what you do relevant to those concerns.

Now all I need to do is keep my eyes and ears open for the concerns of the other BNI members and maybe I’ll get my hands on that Oscar again!