Friday, December 22, 2006

A Christmas Marketing Lesson

Dear Marketing Pros,

I thought I would use the upcoming Christmas holiday to give you what I feel might be the most important marketing lesson you’ll ever learn.  And it all starts with that famous question…

“What do you want for Christmas?”  

Kids are great at answering this question.  In fact, when my 3-year old daughter went to see “Santa Claus” and he asked her what she wanted, she answered, “I want Darth Vader & Thomas the Train!”

Clear, precise, accurate.  My daughter left no doubt in “Santa’s” mind what she wanted for Christmas.  

And you know what?  

She’s going to get exactly what she asked for.

Which brings me to marketing.  

Why is it that when we get our marketing together, we often get surprised that we are not getting the results we were looking for?  It seems that the clarity kids possess gets lost when we grow up to become marketers.  Seriously.  I’ve seen ads put out that say absolutely nothing.  And I often wonder what I should do.  

And I’ve seen plenty of web sites that are there that won't ask me to do anything.  It's like they're saying...
Hey, come in and look around, and then why don’t you just leave.  

This, my dear friends, WILL NOT FLY.

Look over your marketing materials.  Look at your web site.    See if you are clearly and obviously asking people to do something.  Are you putting in a call to action?  If you want someone to buy your product, then ASK FOR THE SALE.  Want them to contact you?  Ask them to contact you and give them your contact information.  Make it clear and easy.  

Don’t dilly-dally.  Don’t hint around.  It’s not good for you, and it’s not good for your prospects and clients.  

And so, let me return to where we started--Christmas.  

In marketing we must be clear.  But when we ask others for gifts, we can’t do like my 3-year old.  It ruins the whole fun and surprise.  

So, I say one thing.  If you do hint to your spouse, parents, or significant other about what you want, try it like I did this year when I was asked what I wanted for Christmas.  I said...

…I want something that begins with “I” and ends with “POD”!

Do you have any idea what it could be?  (no more hints, you’ll have to just figure it out)

Merry Christmas, everyone.  I hope all of you enjoy your holidays, and I am looking forward to helping each and every one of you get better response from your marketing in 2007 (but more on that in my year-end No Excuses for 2007 post & newsletter).  

To Your continued Success,

Carlon Haas

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