The word paradigm shift is used way to often to describe more subtle adjustments in the course of the way businesses market their products and services. It’s kind of like using the word “awesome” do describe everything positive that happens in your day. If something REALLY awesome happens to you, how are you going to describe it? However, when these words are used accurately then we should all look up and pay attention. We are seeing a real PARADIGM SHIFT that is AWESOME in the world of business and marketing because it is truly fundamental in nature. It’s being driven by the transparency created by the new digital revolution.
No longer can a brand or even a small business hide behind their marketing and project the image that they want consumers to see…they have to live it.
Do you remember Eddie Haskel from Leave It To Beaver? Eddie was the neatly groomed, well mannered friend of Wally (Beavers older brother) who tended to use insincere flattery to hide his shallow, sneaky disposition. Everyone suspected that he had something up his sleeve but couldn’t quite put their finger on it because Eddie was really good at hiding the blame when one of his schemes went South.
Facebook, review sites and the ability to share a good or bad experience in mass has leveled the playing field and those that understand how to market transparently will end up on top. It’s not enough to simply provide “good product and/or service at a good price” or bullet point the benefits. These cliche’s have now become expectations, not differentiators and leading with them as your primary marketing message is a surefire way to sound like everyone else.
What can you do to differentiate my business from its competitors?
We’re not going to talking about a product and price positioning in this post. Although these are fundamental marketing cornerstones, they rest on a foundation that is much more important to the consumer. When a potential customer has the ability to make a decision on the character of your business in a matter of seconds it’s is crucial that you start developing a relationship with them from the moment you are “digitally introduced”. The consumer must know, like and trust you before they are committed to you and this is why transparency is a Marketing Basic. Simon Sinek does a wonderful job of describing the science behind this at his 2010 Ted talk: Why, What, How.
Start here: Ask Why, How, What
- What do you love about what it is that you do? (Hint: What part of your job makes you feel good?)
- What is special about the way you do things that makes you feel good?
- Describe how what you do or make has helped others?
What’s interesting about these questions is they tend to circle back to the same strategy. Your business is in the business of serving others and the best marketing is transparently communicating why, how and what you do to deliver that.
How do you start marketing with transparency?
- Describe how your customers feel when they interact with your product or service.
- Talk about the special things you do that give them that feeling.
- Describe how it makes you and your employees feel when they impact someone positively with their product or service.
Get started on simplifying your marketing & growing your business by contacting StructureM today!
About Alan Twelkemeier
Entrepreneur and Marketing Consultant on a mission to help organizations achieve extraordinary growth by aligning their products and services with a cause.