Effective Marketing Summary
Now that the holidays are over, it’s time to get back to work! It’s been a hectic time, visiting family in two parts of the country followed by a New Year’s Day snowstorm and then the Polar Vortex of 2014.
I hope you had a great holiday season as well, and made somebody’s holidays special. Getting that present you always wanted is nice, but nothing brings a smile to my face more than seeing my boys when they get that special present. As my youngest son says, “Santa Claus is the smartest guy in the world.”
Let’s recap Effective Marketing as one of the Three Pillars of Going Viral. We’ve covered Buttons, Messaging and Positioning and as part of that I talked about Market Research.
Market Research is the backbone of Buttons, Messaging and Positioning. Without knowing your market, you can’t present your product to them in a way that they will accept.
Even before that, Market Research is the backbone of creating the right product. The landscape is littered with products that sounded great to the braintrust behind it, but missed miserably. Some products are just plain wrong, while others are the right sort of product, but the execution is so bad that customers avoid them in droves.
Obviously you need to develop the right products and market them effectively, but how do you know what the right products are? We read the successes of those companies that made it big—and some of those made it big by luck, but few books are written about the companies that failed.
I’m not in favor of having “luck” in a business plan. “Step 6: We get lucky and sell a boatload of software.” Your odds are better at the card tables in Vegas.
Market Research is the key. Talk to potential customers. Ask them about their business problems that you can solve with a software solution and learn HOW your software can solve their problems. Don’t tell them how you can solve your problems—that’s what you do with marketing after the software is built! Ask questions, poke and prod around and find out what the story is.
Now you’re armed with knowledge of your market and can extrapolate that into what your product needs to do and how it needs to do it. Drive that product towards completion, market it following Buttons, Messaging and Positioning, then support it professionally and you’ll succeed like crazy.