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November 20, 2019

Their marketing worked! This time.

I needed a new part for my truck. The armrest was busted and I needed a new piece to fix it. I asked my mechanic about replacing the entire armrest, but was a little appalled at the cost of a new one. And I didn’t know quite where to go to find a piece as specific as the underside plate for an armrest in a Ford truck.

Then, in a huge stroke of luck/coincidence, I saw an ad on TV for a place called RockAuto. So, I went to their website, found the part, ordered it, the part showed up a few days later… boom! The advertising worked for them.

Sort of.

The ad worked because I had a need at the time and when I saw the ad, there was an immediate connection. But what if the ad had popped up when I had no need? Unless it was truly compelling/entertaining advertising – which 98% of advertising is NOT – I was not going to remember it. I would probably just have ignored it or looked away (TV)/flipped the page (print)/clicked away (online). The ad would have been immediately forgotten and I would have just moved on.

But flip the script. What if I had the need, but no ad (of any kind) was in view? I could have ignored the problem (like I did for a little while with the armrest). More likely, I would have started by doing some research online with queries like, “buy car parts online” or “parts for Ford truck” and so on. Would I have ended up on RockAuto’s website? Maybe… maybe not.

And that’s the real lesson here when it comes to advertising… and marketing, in general.

Building top-of-mind awareness in your target audience is a two-step process. You first have to get to “top of mind” status… and then you have to stay there. Most firms can make a hard marketing push and achieve part one. It’s part two where the vast majority of firms fall short.

Building top-of-mind awareness in your target audience is a two-step process. You first have to get to “top of mind” status… and then you have to stay there. It’s part two where the vast majority of firms fall short. Click To Tweet

Building that level of awareness with your marketing efforts is about having a constant presence in the marketplace. It’s about being frequent and consistent. Through multiple channels.

That’s why firms (sellers) that are successful at growing their business have a broad and deep marketing strategy… they’re active on social media, send out monthly enewsletters, produce good content, exhibit at conferences, post ads on LinkedIn, etc.

When you follow a strategy like that, regardless of your buyers’ daily habits, they are likely to run into your ads/messaging on some sort of frequent basis. That way, when they do have a need for the kinds of services you sell, it’s you that they think of first. This strategy will also reduce (or eliminate) the amount of time buyers spend searching for alternatives (your competitors) online.

What’s the right frequency… the right amount of presence… the right mix of content, ads and messaging? That really is the million-dollar question. The good news is that you can test and find out… try different tactics and frequency, then measure the impact. Over time, you’ll find the mix and timing that works best for you.

But one thing is sure… when you don’t invest in a consistent presence in the marketplace – regardless of the marketing mix – you will never achieve a level of high level of awareness in the minds of your clients and prospects.

And it doesn’t matter if you’re selling consulting services or armrests!

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