It will help if you think in terms of the 3E’s.
Exposure, Expenditure, and Experience.
In 2013 we were exposed to over 7,000 brand messages every day, in 2020 the figure is estimated to be closer to 10,000 a day, which is not all that surprising given the explosion of digital marketing in the last decade and a record UK adverting spend of £26Billion last year – thus within seconds of landing on any digital page we are bombarded with irritating ads!
How do you survive and prosper if you are one of the UK’s 560 gin distilleries, 9,435 jewellers, 60,000 management consultants or 250,000 marketing agencies; without spending a million let alone a billion on advertising?
Consider Experience in terms what you offer and deliver, and what your customers receive and value, and focus on your core expertise – it does not have to be complicated; it could be as simple as:
- People (leadership and mentoring)
- Product (profitability and positioning)
- Process (planning and strategy)
Surely, it’s not all about Emojis and Stars?
What use to be the domain of restaurants and hotels is now on everything from Amazon deliveries to Gas BBQ’s, Face Creams, Hedge Trimmers, and the length of time spent in a queue … and we do read them, and they do influence our purchase decisions.
As a “me-only-company” with a limited marketing budget, it was not surprising that after my first 5 years in business only 4% of my assignments could be classified as new business from a new contact, which was worrying until put in the context of where the majority of my assignments came from – people who knew me or were told about me! (29% from former colleagues and 42% from referrals.)
“When hiring a management consulting firm, clients do not know what they are getting in advance, because they are looking for knowledge that they themselves lack. They cannot measure the results, either because outside factors, such as the quality of execution, influence the outcome of the consultant recommendations – so they rely on reputation.”
Clayton Christensen – Harvard Business School
In other words what the customer says about you!
Referrals help cut through the noise and confusion of a crowded market,
so don’t forget to ask for them.