Business is full of laborious tasks and selling and marketing can be one of the most mind numbing experiences of your life, due to the excessive repetition involved which at times can make you feel like you’re doing unintelligent work, which you got all dressed up for in your dare devil costume, only to find yourself going nowhere fast.
It’s grunt work that just doesn’t justify your time and effort given the results because your way smarter and more effective than that and there are much better ways to achieve the same outcome.
Selling is a cycle of ascension that guides a buyer from interest to action and one of the best tools for describing this is with AIDA which stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, Action.
First you attract your audience’s attention, next you build interest in order to maintain their attention and then you establish desire (which is typically a need to solve a problem in business) so that you can finally ask for action. It’s very similar to a sales cycle.
Marketing is one the most powerful tools at your disposal for automating a lot of your selling work.
It allows you to “pre-sell” an idea of who you are, what you stand for and what it is that you can do for your customers. Most marketing falls prey to the same pit falls that selling does and loses the attention of your customers and prospects right from the word go.
That’s because far too many marketers (and sellers) use ploys or gimmicks like meaningless puns and strap lines which try and impress or close down a prospect quickly, which actually creates more resistance.
Instead, at the very beginning you should be talking to your prospect as if you were talking to a long lost brother or sister who you’d just met for the very first time.
Show them that you understand their problem or where they are coming from, then spark their attention with a meaningful response which shows that you care and offer a way for getting to know each other better. Show them evidence of your experiences and family connections and finally move onto the last step where you mutually agree on some kind of action or next step which might involve meeting again.
The customer supplier relationship is no different.
Your Strategy Should Be To Campaign Not Pitch Or Promote
Sellers are instantly at a disadvantage because customers don’t like being “sold to” and guess what sales people do ? They sell, so if your marketing and selling starts with a pitch or promotion you will find yourself, or your marketing, being shut out.
It’s easy to spot when your marketing is full of puns and gimmicks or your sales people are asking assumptive questions and you’re talking about products and services to drive towards the close without ever establishing whether there is a situation that does need you to actually sell something and is usually much later in the process.
Instead you should focus on education and training that helps your prospects and customers achieve something or learn something. Each piece of communication should reinforce the very idea of how you can help your customer and what it is that you do without pitching or promoting.
Your building a case around a topic or idea that you can support with content you produce and supply in a series of information articles, guides, videos or audio interviews.
Effective Marketing Automation Eradicates The Labour Intensive Low Return Repetition Work
Selling and marketing requires a constant stream of activity so that it can cut through the clutter and noise in any given market. It’s a relentless and time consuming activity.
It’s made worse when you’re not doing the right things in the first place and no matter how much repetition you do, things just get worse and not better.
Repetition is an industrial throw back and its always been associated with low paid and low skilled work which is why automation and robotics eventually replaced people on many production lines.
When all you are doing is laborious mind numbing work it’s difficult to focus on doing the things that really grow and develop a business.
To truly unleash your business development potential and increase the trajectory of your company’s growth you need to have some foundations in place first, which will help you build an effective system. The key to this is implementing components that take away the grunt work and actually enhance your customer relationships so you may be surprised when I tell you to use automation.
Often automation conjures up images of complicated menus and clinical processes which in business gets associated with those bad systems used by call centres. With ease they demonstrate their inability to perform simple tasks like directing calls correctly or forcing you to hang on the line for 40 minutes while they remind you how important your call is before you even get a chance to speak to a real person.
It’s not the automation that is the problem it’s how it’s being used because of a lack of education, improper training, poor staffing levels and many other choices made by the company using it. But you’re not going to make those mistakes because you already know far more than those big dumb businesses who just don’t know any better.
Automation is an essential part of everyday living, and in fact most of our lives are automated in some way. Whether it’s the dishwasher, alarm clock, oven, lawn mower, or car, all of these automated components help us to avoid time consuming manual labour so that we can do more with our time.
Automation when used correctly enhances the outcome and should not detract from it. This will be the same for automation in your sales and marketing system.
Selling and marketing automation that actually builds a relationship is not a fairy tale despite your bad experiences. It’s going to be essential for scaling up the growth of your business with the optimum level of resources and minimum waste.