nurturing small businesses

Personality, people & possibilities: the 3 Ps of marketing success in 2014

Posted by on Mar 7, 2014 in Blog | 0 comments

Do you want your marketing activity to generate more revenue for your business this year?  Yes?  Then you may well be interested in following The Business Greenhouse’s top 3 tips for success in 2014.

One of the most popular requests The Business Greenhouse gets from our clients is to help them generate more sales, and thus more profit, for their business.  In most cases marketing plays a major role in realising this ambition.

However, while the tools chosen to deliver a company’s marketing messages effectively may vary depending on your objectives, customers and business, we’ve found some common themes in what is marketed that are proving to work really well.

The Business Greenhouse has dubbed these trends as the new 3 Ps of marketing.

‘Whoa there’, you might shout.  What are those well-thumbed marketing textbooks professing then with their 4 Ps, or even 7 Ps?

…pause to think about the popularity of social media, blogging and other content marketing tools as this is certainly prompting an evolution in how marketing is applied and practiced.  However, that’s a different blog for another day!

The upshot is not to discount these previously professed Ps – they’re still valid – but consider that the marketing landscape is shifting.  Our 3 Ps are one result of us reviewing where this landscape is now.

So let’s share our 3 Ps with you so that you can start to use them in your business and make them work for you as they are doing for The Business Greenhouse’s clients.

Marketing P #1. Personality

Be bold and make the decision to flaunt your company’s personality.

This isn’t about what your mission and values are, but your character.  Are you fun-loving and positive?  Reliable and precise?  Adventurous and helpful?  Of course there are a whole host of other available adjectives from which to choose.  You’ll likely find the ones that fit your business in the decisions you make and your actions.

The key is that despite all the technological advances, the slick automated systems, and the ease of buying over the internet, people still buy from people. They want that human connection that will help them to develop trust and confidence in a business – two necessary factors in any purchasing decision.

Think how you can convey your personality through your marketing messages, activity and materials, as well as in other factors such as how you deal with their clients face-to-face, over the phone or via email.

A bonus is that while competitors may offer identical products or services, and have a similar website, it’s hard for them to truly mimic personality.  And if your personality is winning you customers, that’s another feather in your cap.

Marketing P #2. People

Make your business about the people you serve.

Your customers now have a lot of control over the purchasing decisions they make.  The internet and social media has made it so much easier for them to research products and services they need.  It’s not difficult for them to compare your prices to those of your competitors while they have your product in front of them, Google similar services while they’re on the phone to you, request recommendations or read countless reviews, and so on.  So when they have access to so much information, how will you make sure they choose to buy from you?

The answer is that you must show that you understand your buyers and that you can provide the experience that your customer or client wants. 

Connecting with your customers is crucial in this respect.  Collate the information that you haveabout them and analyse it to find out who your target audience actually is, what they really need to achieve by dealing with your company and how they want to hear from you.   If you can use this information to produce and offer products and services that meet their needs, and demonstrate through your marketing activity that you can relate to your target audience, you’ll be well on your way to developing sincere and long-lasting relationships with profitable customers.

 

Marketing P #3.  Possibilities

Demonstrate the impact your product or service has on your customers.

More than giving them a chance to hold your product or understand the features of your service, this is about engaging with your audience on an emotional and experiential level.  Think of it in terms of storytelling, taking customers through the journey of your brand, or how your existing customers use your products or services.

The aim of this trend is to break out of background noise created by a significant amount of available information or content pushed out from your competitors and generally across the web and other media.  Focus on encouraging impassioned responses to the stories you tell.  Help your customers to visualise what it will mean to them to own your product or engage with your services.

John Lewis has this cracked.  Think of the John Lewis Christmas campaign.  The story of Bear and Hare seen in their TV ad (and by over 12 milion people on You Tube) so captivated customers that the retail king ran out of associated merchandise and people started auctioning their Bear and Hare products off on Ebay because they were so popular.  Compare this campaign to their competitors – Marks & Spencer’s and Debenhams for example.  Which department store Christmas message do you remember most clearly?  I’m willing to bet you’ll say ‘John Lewis’.

The story-telling approach may not be a quick win, it may take months or years to build your story and entice customers along with you, but the power stories have to alter behaviour is great.

 

May we assure you that it’s not because of this time of austerity that The Business Greenhouse is talking about 3 Ps instead of 7!  Available and emerging technology, the way it influences buyer behaviour and how we communicate with clients and customers means marketing practice is constantly evolving.

It certainly is an exciting time in which to market small businesses.  We hope that The Business Greenhouse’s tips will allow you to get out there and have some fun with marketing your business and boosting your sales.

 

Have any of these 3 Ps worked for you?  Or are there any exciting examples that are inspiring your own marketing activity? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.

 

– post first appeared at http://blog.brunelone.com/ on 3rd February 2014

Leave a Reply