10 Lessons in Marketing Brilliance
During the height of her popularity, Paris Hilton once fired this retort at critics: “It will work. I am a marketing genius.” Sadly, those of us who aren’t as blessed must face the fact that creating a campaign that captures lots of eyeballs and produces millions in sales is about as likely as Hilton’s big Hollywood comeback.
Every year there are marketing initiatives that hit on that winning combination of:
- Great Idea
- Perfect timing
- Flawless execution
Here are 10 marketing lessons from 2011. The rest is up to you.
1. Go Guerrilla. Warner Brothers had a bill board to promote the movie Contagion that actually grew bacteria and mold to spell out the name. The NEWS about the marketing was as big as the NEWS about the movie. For things to go viral you need to break the mold (pun intended).
2. Pay Attention to what is going on. You can score big if you keep up with current events and speak to what is on peoples mind.
3. Find a way to turn your best customers into brand evangelists. Reward your current customers for getting the word out.
4. Get Personal. Relating to customers is vitally important for any marketing effort. Tap directly into peoples emotion and what they care about. Show how your gym is perfect for how they feel.
5. Raise the Stakes. Give your customers a reason to care, and helping them, help you. If at a birthday party at your gym, the parent of the birthday child gets 3 or 4 kids to sign up for class, give them the party for free.
6. Be Exclusive. Two words: INVITATION ONLY. Have an invitation only event at the gym. Make it THE place to be.
7. Have a Conversation. Talk to your customers. If you engage in dialogue with customers you will do better than one who prefers to lecture.
8. Make it SHARE worthy. Social Media is all about the “pass-along value”. We used to cut out news paper clips of our children to pass around. Now sharing is just a click away.
9. Solve a Problem. It is always a good bet to focus on how a product or service helps customers rather than bragging about your best features. EVERY TIME there is an article in your newspaper or on line on child hood obesity- You should be able to take that to the bank. Want to be a better down hill skier- Try gymnastics. Want to be a better soccer player- Try Gymnastics.
10. Knock it Out of The Park. Few (if any) companies can rival Disney’s Ad spend, but no matter what budget, a traditional, well executed campaign with one stunning narrative can be more effective than one that’s fragmented across contests, Facebook fan pages and other channels.
With all marketing, make sure you can track your investment. If you can’t track if it is working, it is not marketing, it is a contribution.