You’ve built your great product, but how do you connect with your customers? During the period where TV was the popular media technology, business exposure came mostly through one-way messages. Now that social media prevails through twitter, FaceBook and other in-real-time two-way communications, the art of marketing is changing.
As marketing is basically matching desire with the ability to attain, a concept presented by Robert Bartels in his book The History of Marketing Thought, transferring information between the producer and the user is the name of the game. Staying on top of the wave of rapid changes, Kevin Lund of T3 Custom reveals that sincere two-way communication is the key to successful marketing.
With the barrage of information coming at all of us, the question is how does a business communicate to reach their target audience. Lund gives three simple tips:
1. Be prepared
2. Be vulnerable
3. Be humble
Prepared - Know who you are and know your customer. Lund emphasizes that you need to "know your brand's story inside and out" and keep your brand image backed with your actions. Sean Casey at Nielson Social reports that the 35-49 year olds aka "Generation X" spend most of their time on social media with women outweighing men. So businesses' social media messages are very likely to go to or through this group, which you can picture as many moms and dads building their careers. Lund suggests that you "create a voice based on the customers vernacular and maintaining your brand’s story," adding that, " An educated person is much more likely to buy from the brand that consistently gives them something interesting and useful."
Vulnerable -Lund explains that being vulnerable means to be open to the customers' feedback, which can come spontaneously and quickly through twitter or any social media. “The challenge here is that, now that the consumer is involved, brand marketers don’t always have control over a message at any given point,” he says. “As a result, it’s critical for marketers to listen and respond in kind.” Being vulnerable is having an openness to learn and ties right into the next point, be humble.
Humble - Respect your customer by killing your ego and making a personal connection. Realize that we are all on the same playing field; both your voice and your customers' is equally valuable.
“Take the time to know the customers and reach them the way they want to be reached,” Lund said. “They don’t care about your brand the way you do. Companies need to kill their ego and step back. Don’t sell products. Sell information, education, and inspiration. You say your brand is great? No one’s listening.”
Lund sees that sincere two-way communication will continue as the key to successful marketing.
" The future will be largely driven by those born after 2000, who aren't shackled by the perceptions that you need money, connections, and resources to create change. They feel the unlimited opportunity to take a good idea, authenticity, strong will, and a distinguishable voice (i.e. personality), to create things, virtually from thin air, simply by smartly accessing the vast networks created by a shared economy model."
"The key to success of tomorrow’s model is one’s ability to tell a good human story, through sincere conversation," Lund sums it all up.