How to do marketing effectively

Get your message out there

In a recent post, Matt at 37signals’ blog put forward some useful ideas about how to get your product or service noticed in a relentlessly competitive marketplace.

Indeed, the name of their blog (Signal vs. Noise) is itself apposite in this regard – marketing is, in its most basic form, the task of boosting the strength of one’s message (the signal) in a sea of other potential alternatives or rivals (the noise).

In the context of how to "self-promote" more effectively, here are his 10 (condensed) points that should provide a starting point for any marketer to have lost their way:

  1. Provide something of value. Attention = time, so getting your customer to engage with your message effectively in the time available is paramount. Making sure your audience gets something out of the experience is just as important, though – They should feel that the time they’ve invested has been worthwhile.
  2. Know your hook. What sets you apart from the rest?
  3. Stand for something. Everyone has a philosophy on life, and companies are no less individual – How does your firm view the world, and how can it improve your customers’ lives?
  4. Get your face out there. Personal contact with clients and potential customers never goes amiss…
  5. Try to build real, sustained relationships. …But try to keep the contact genuine and human.
  6. It’s the message, not the amount you spend on it.
  7. Give stuff away for free. Because free doesn’t always lead to a loss on the balance sheet – Freebies get your name and what you provide out there, and this can often bear fruit in terms of potential leads.
  8. Ride the wave. What’s the buzz at the moment? Identify it, see if it can work for you and run with it.
  9. Be in it for the long haul. There probably isn’t such a thing as an "overnight success".
  10. Be undeniably good. In fact, be so good at what you do that you cannot be ignored.

This is all sound advice we think – Although as Seth Godin points out, companies aren’t really so vainglorious as to be involved in the business of "self-promotion" – all they actually want is to promote their products. After all, organisations rarely exist merely to inflate some non-existent corporate ego.

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