This weekend, I was discussing the First World War with my 6-year-old son.
We were attending a parade to mark the 100th anniversary of the armistice.
I spent a few minutes explaining to him what an armistice was, and how important it was to honour those soldiers who had given up their lives for our freedom.
“So everyone just stopped fighting? Every country?”
“Yes. The guns fell silent at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month…….”
“Who won?” he wanted to know.
I had to laugh.
I was so busy lecturing him about the lessons of the war, that it had never occurred to me that he didn’t know this rather basic piece of information.
Does your marketing go over your audience’s head?
I was pitching to him at completely the wrong level….
Companies make this mistake the whole time with their marketing. You, too, might be assuming lots of knowledge your audience simply doesn’t have.
For example, you might give long explanations of how your product or service works….
….Whilst in reality, most of your potential buyers aren’t even convinced they need it.
That’s jumping ahead of your target market.
On the other hand, your marketing might be too basic for them.
Imagine a bank, in 2018, trying to convince people they need a credit card. This might have been necessary when credit cards were launched in 1950, but nowadays it’s taken for granted.
Instead, most people want to hear about the bonus or reward schemes offered by different credit cards.
It’s all about which credit card to pick, rather than about whether you should have one in the first place.
The bottom line is that for your marketing to be effective, it’s not enough to know who your audience is, or what benefits your product can give them.
You also need to know exactly how aware they already are of what you’re selling. Do they understand they need it? Do they understand your type of solution? How much do they know about your specific product?
That can change your marketing message entirely.
Have you ever considered how knowledgeable your audience is about your industry, your solution and your product? How has this changed your marketing messages? Please let me know in the comments.
She is director of content at Brainstorm Digital, which helps companies generate leads, enquiries and sales through email marketing.