All of your promotional material, from blogs and articles, to advertisements, to social media efforts, must hit where it counts in order to be effective. Keeping the following three items in mind will help you aim your marketing materials where they need to be.
Way #1: Everything has its proper time
Considering what’s on people’s minds at the moment will go a long way towards getting their attention. Consider the following points before you craft any marketing material:
- Day of the week: Will your promo material appear on a Manic Monday or on a TGI Friday? Will it appear the day before payday (when most people are just scraping by), or just after payday (when most people are feeling exuberant). If you have the flexibility, marketing according to the day is an excellent strategy to adopt.
- Season: Are you sending off your ads in a hunker-down winter or a sizzling summer? Are the first flowers beginning to bloom, or are the first leaves beginning to fall? Don’t underestimate the role seasonal factors play in your customer’s buying decisions.
- Events: Is it the week before a big holiday (anticipation), or the week after one (let down)? Are the children going to be home or are they going to be out at school? Has there recently been a national tragedy, or is there a general sense of victory and euphoria? These “event” factors play a substantial role in the decision-making process. Even knowing what your target audience was watching on TV last night, or what kind of weather she’s experiencing today, can clue you in to her mood
- Financial: How are people feeling about money? Is it a time of cautious restraint, or is it a time for freer spending? The money issue, which is in as constant a flux as the stock market, plays a big factor in the decision as to when, where, and how to spend.
General seasonal changes are good indicators of buyer behavior; they are also “safe bets” when you can’t get other information.
Way #2: The proof of the pudding is in the buying
At the end of the day though, people are people. We don’t always react according to expectation.
That’s why you need to use some tools – to tell you real time behavior. If you can understand the method behind the madness, then you’re one-step smarter than they are, and you can tailor your media blasts accordingly. Here are a few tools to help you keep your finger on your customer’s pulse:
- Neilson http://www.nngroup.com/articles/
- News https://news.google.com/
- Google Trends http://www.google.com/trends/
Way #3: Tried and true rules
When it comes to creating marketing and advertisement content, a few ideas (almost) universally ring true. These ideas are the bread and butter of advertising and they haven’t changed since the snake sold Eve on that forbidden fruit so many years ago:
- Respect the real individual: No one likes to be talked down to. Respect your audience, their sensibilities, and their time, and they’re more likely to hear what you have to say.
- The easier the better: No one wants to have to work too hard in order to get your message. Say it clearly and concisely and they won’t have to.
- Develop a personal connection: Don’t ignore the “me” behind the wallet or pocketbook your customer carries around.
- Conflict and controversy (i.e. a good fight) is always interesting. Begin your campaigns with a good struggle, or a strong “difference of opinion,” and you’re almost sure to bring your audience along for the ride.