Most vendors and service
providers dramatically cut back on their marketing activities during the
last three lean years ï¿½ many out of financial necessity. But today, as a new
horde of prospective buyers become increasingly receptive to IP telephony
products and services, the time has come for companies to reestablish,
reinvigorate, and revamp their marketing messages and strategies.
IP telephony is no longer
relegated to the ï¿½early adopterï¿½ customer segment ï¿½ it is finally
mainstreaming into the general business population. In order to capitalize
on this newly expanded market and to start driving new customers into the
checkout lane, companies need to focus their energies on getting the right
messages out to these customers. Finding the right marketing message that
will resonate with the intended group of sales prospects is critical to
everything you do in your marketing efforts. In fact, if you have a great
marketing message and combine that with effective promotion, youï¿½ll never
have to worry about getting customers again.
Remember: Your marketing message
is what grabs your prospectï¿½s attention, tells them how you can solve their
problem(s), why they should trust you, and why they should choose to do
business with you over and above any and all other choices they might have.
The key to creating a winning marketing message is to make sure that it
matches the wants and needs of those who receive it. Your marketing message
should speak to your prospect by appealing to your prospectï¿½s hot buttons or
sensitivities ï¿½ and ideally trigger an emotional reaction.
Once youï¿½ve developed an
effective marketing message you can start to use it in all areas of your
marketing, including brochures and other collateral, advertisements (print,
radio, TV), presentations, Web sites, Webinars/seminars, speeches and
workshops, proposals, faxes, and e-mails. In fact, any form of external
communication should include parts or even your entire marketing message.
I thought it would be helpful to present a simple five-point refresher on
what it takes to create a winning marketing message. Most of this will be
ï¿½old hatï¿½ to many of you ï¿½ but even so, old hats need to be dusted off every
now and then.
Five Steps To Creating An
Effective Marketing Message
1. Identify your target market(s). Every successful business has
clearly-defined target markets. So the first step you want to ask yourself
is ï¿½Who or what are your target markets?ï¿½ Once you have this down, then itï¿½s
easier to craft messages for each of these markets.
2. Identify the problems that your target markets experience. Each
market segment experiences its frustrations and pains. The secret to
crafting marketing messages that will make your markets sit up and take note
is to identify their problems and the frustrations they feel as a result of
these problems. Thereï¿½s an old saying that goes, ï¿½People donï¿½t care about
you, until they know you care.ï¿½ Identifying your marketsï¿½ frustrations tells
them that you understand and empathize with them. Also, identifying the
problems that your markets face will, in turn, help you fine-tune your
3. Present your solutions to your marketsï¿½ problems. The next step is
to present your solution as a cure for the frustration your markets are
feeling as a result of their problems. Identify all the benefits of your
solutions and how these benefits will improve your prospectsï¿½ business. Try
to reverse any perceived risk that your prospects might have with taking
advantage of your solution. Also, try to position your solution as being
easy to implement.
4. Present the results youï¿½ve produced for other businesses in the same
situation. Itï¿½s not enough just to tell people you have a solution; you
have to prove to them that your solution works. People tend to believe other
people who are similar to them that have achieved positive results. Youï¿½ll
need to prove your results by giving testimonials from current and former
customers and provide case studies of actual problems that were solved and
the results that were achieved. When presenting the problem in your case
study, discuss not only the problem, but also the negative results that the
company was experiencing and the associated financial consequences of the
problem. When presenting the results, try to characterize all the benefits
experienced as a result of the implementing the solution, how long it took
to get those results, and the financial implications to the company over the
5. Explain what makes you different from your competitors.
Prospects are looking for you to communicate your differences. And those
differences need to have perceived value to the prospect. It needs to be
something they care about.
Marc Robins has been involved in the telecommunications industry as a
researcher and analyst, author and publisher, and marketing executive and
consultant for over 23 years, having recently served for five years as Vice
President of Publications and Trade Shows and Group Editorial Director at
TMC. Most recently, Marc launched a new
consulting and marketing-services company offering an array of professional
services to the IP telephony industry, and he is also publishing a number of
new information resources for prospective buyers of the technology. Contact
Marc at 718-548-7245 or e-mail
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