You really CAN be interesting, you know!

Louis Theroux’s musings on the best party chat-up lines are a lesson for businesses seeking new customers. It’s about being interesting from the word go. 

A run of the mill chat up line goes something like this. ‘Hi, my name’s Rich/Jane, what’s yours?...what do you do? ’ This was generally found to be useless, using open ended, vague questions which wouldn't get a conversation let alone a relationship off the ground. 

But using opening questions like ‘Hi, my name’s Rich/Jane, I’m an airline pilot…would you like a drink?’. gets a different reaction. It’s assertive, confident, memorable (well, more so than ‘and what do you do…’!)  and immediately gives some information to provoke a reaction (whether inwardly or outwardly expressed, whether positive or negative…not ‘er.. ho, hummmm…’). Finally, it makes an offer.

It’s no different for businesses trying to get cut-through in outbound marketing or seeking attention in a few milli-seconds to win inbound responses. Especially if we’re operating in an established market sector where differentiation is so tricky, and so many businesses hang on to everyone else’s pitch e.g. in services ‘it’s about our people…’

So, some rules of the road:

  1. Have outbound messages and propositions that echo your brand – ask is it ‘on brand?’ – and take time on this.
  2. Be specific, not nebulous – address a specific pain-point or topical need
  3. Be consistent – remember, whilst the businesses you are targeting maybe the same year in year out, the employees change regularly. So refine your message, develop your message, and with a strategy behind it, it won’t get boring!
  4. Apply the grunt – any marketing and sales is a numbers game, so you need to apply the pressure to reach your audiences, which, if it’s not in the company or sales DNA , can be outsourced. Caveat - use people who "get" your brand and who don’t just throw eggs at the wall!

Anyone can be interesting… now it's up to you to keep the relationship going.

Jonny Ambrose


Social media – is it right for your business?

If social media isn’t your personal thing, you might understandably struggle to believe it’s got any value for your business. So be clear about your objectives for it from the outset. This might sound like, “Yeah, duh…!” as my 13 year old would say. However, you’d be surprised at how few take the time to do this. Clarity of objectives for any new business marketing activity from the get go, makes measuring success (or lack of it) an easy thing to do. A sceptical C-suite will be looking for tangible ROI from any new activity you're proposing.

One of our clients, the Made in Britain campaign, is a great example of a B2B business successfully using social media.  When they approached us for their social media strategy and implementation, they wanted to raise awareness of the campaign from launch.  What came as a real surprise to them was in how many instances social media could be used to fulfill multiple marketing objectives as they arose over time.  We’ve met all of their new awareness and lead generation objectives through the use of social media – and cost efficiently too.  These include:

  1. Identifying UK manufacturers across all industries and by type (market research & prospecting)
  2. Recruiting UK manufacturers into the campaign (revenue generation)
  3. Promoting the products and factory environments of member manufacturers as a benefit to their membership (an additional marketing benefit for the manufacturer)
  4. Creating a “community” environment for manufacturers to support each other using an open, inviting, friendly tone of voice (building a tribe – ideal for referrals)
  5. Helping manufacturers network to source UK companies for their supply chain & get help for their manufacturing challenges (networking)
  6. Becoming “the place” to come to find British factories and British made goods using the hashtag #madeinbritainhour (PR)
  7. Achieving all of these objectives cost efficiently (cost saving)

At Fire NBM, we’re big fans of using social media as a way of generating demand and integrating it with other marketing competencies such as content management (for nurturing the leads) and outbound direct marketing. It’s not the only way, of course, but social media’s a great environment for turning cold prospects into qualified leads.  We don’t believe in just using social media as a broadcasting tool for your marketing messages – it’s a business development tool.  These global comms platforms allow you to have 1-2-1 conversations with real prospects you have identified or, even better, those who have self-qualified as interested in what you do/sell/have.  

To find out more about how we use social media to produce super effective, super targeted demand and revenue generating lead generation campaigns, whilst building a great reputation, do call me, Fiona Stewart, on 07881 581 801. 

Fiona Stewart
September 2016

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