Let’s think about an idea for marketing spring clean-up: raking through your old or current marketing plan, perhaps even fertilizing some ideas. As you dig through your thoughts and past experiences, you may even want to grab a marketing book to stimulate some new growth. I’m a fan of The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing by Al Reis and Jack Trout. It’s an ‘oldie but goodie’ from about 20 years ago, but these guru guys write pointed, easy to understand marketing books.
Of the 22 laws, my favorite is “The Law of Focus” defined as, “owning a word in the prospect’s mind.” Reis and Trout point out that marketing is about sacrifice – not trying to be everything to everybody. However, it’s much faster to write about than it is to implement it.
A lot of soul searching needs to happen when we’re working on our marketing plans. We must look at what we do and ask tough questions. What do we do better than our competition? What does our competition do better? Does the competition own a word in our customers’ minds? If they do, you can’t have it.
Some examples shared in the book might seem a little dated but there’s an ‘oh yeah’ factor that may spark some thought.
Crest = cavities
Volvo = safety
Heinz ketchup = slow
Fed Ex = overnight
Reis and Trout warn about words that if everyone claims, lose their mind-grabbing power. Words like “quality” and “customer service” are somewhat empty because they are a prerequisite of being in business…and again, if everyone claims them, no one owns them.
So, grab a book while things are still dormant and use a little marketing as fertilizer. It could help you own up to what you do or should do better in your business.
Greg Jodzio is an Encore Entrepreneur. He is retired from his first career as a sales executive and is now spending his time growing his newest venture, Red’s Hot, LLC and providing business training and assistance to other Encore Entrepreneurs.