There is one new marketing rule that will drive company revenue—and owner wealth—sky high. What is it?
Tailor your marketing to the way your buyers buy.
I always start with the highest end buyers, no matter the company or its products and services. Let’s see how the new rule applies.
What do they want to buy? How would they prefer to buy?
The Old Rule
The old rule of marketing was to have a solid set of the 4 Ps: product, price, promotion, place.
Where’s the buyer in this set? Nowhere!
The New Rule: S.S.A.M.
The new rule is this: Sell, Segment, Align, Market (Sell again)
Where is the buyer? He or she is everywhere in this new rule!
Sell: since you are a going concern, you have buyers. The Sell step is happening already. You keep track of sales by buyers, the more specific the better.
Segment: after each sale, you evaluate which segment the buyer falls into. Each new sale is a golden opportunity for more insight into the buyer.
If you’re selling consumable services (tax returns, car detailing, headshots, designer clothes, business legal services such as contracts, financial advisory services, training services, staffing, catering, photography and so on), you segment buyers based on the last 2-3 purchases. Track what changes and what stays the same. Has the buyer expressed an interest in other offerings? Does he or she want speed, high value, your personal attention? Buyers will tell you what they want; you only have to pay attention to them.
For once-and-done products or services (architectural design and planning, large scale interior design, lawsuits, consulting projects, IT design, home purchases, and many more) you segment your buyers based on their circle of influence. The more you cultivate and nurture these once-and-done buyers, the more likely they are to introduce you to their colleagues and friends. This is a dozen times more effective than constantly recruiting new buyers.
Align: successful companies are continuously improving their array of offerings. They add new services, upgrade existing ones and drop under-performing or low value ones. (When was the last time your company did this?)
The highest-value use of your creativity and attention is aligning your offerings to your buyers. Instead of starting with an idea (“hey, lets make this cool thing and sell it”) you begin with what your buyers want to buy. If you have a buyer who told you they way want exceptional service as well as high value, create an offering for them. You’ll then find others who will also buy it. You should align across all product categories and buyer segments. This will eliminate offerings that have no buyers or that are low value, low profit; and help you invest heavily in offerings with the highest return.
Market: You create a marketing campaign that’s customized to your buyers. This is IMPORTANT! It’s not a marketing plan that your creatives love, or that an analyst tells you is the best one based on past data, or one that that seems ‘logical.’ Buyers should dictate your marketing tactics.
You tell high value buyers only about value. Forget features and benefits; that’s generic stuff that means nothing to these buyers. Tell these buyers how this offering meets their specific, and often intangible, needs: highest quality, speedily delivered at a price commensurate with the quality and speed. These buyers like to know they’ve bought something unique, or of limited availability. They like access to the owner. They want greater status in their peer group.
Each of the three profitable buyer segments (Regulars, Enthusiastic Fans and Best Buyers) has their antennae tuned to hear specific messages. Make sure yours are crafted to be picked up by their radar.
Sell Again: The more effective your marketing is to specific buyers, the more likely they are to buy again.
Then S.S.A.M. begins anew. Record the sale, evaluate the segment, align your offerings to the buyer’s preferences, and market specifically to them.
Do you fear you’re stuck in the rut of the old rules?