George Bernard Shaw once said: “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”
I have to say that it is clear that Bernard Shaw was not a marketing man and lived in a different era. This day and age in order to get your message across effectively and achieve progress, not only do you need to adapt your message you have to make sure you adapt it to a specific target market as well. I am not suggesting that you have to offer something to everyone but rather be clear what you are offering and to whom. The same logic applies of course to any launch or promotional seminar you might be planning.
In my line of work I meet all sorts of people and taking a leaf from Bernard Shaw’s analogy they tend to broadly divide into two types:
The Unreasonable Folk who insist that their input is so superior that everyone will be interested in coming along because it is they that are going to be there. When these people organize an event, they often feel that promoting it is a waste of time and unnecessary as it will fill up on word of mouth alone. They sometimes end up with very thinly attended events.
The Doubly Reasonable Folk who believe that their product and service is right for everybody and can be adapted to fit all needs and purposes. When these people organise an event, they often fail to choose a tailored strategy as they are interested in anyone attending. They often end up with popular events which result in low conversion.
Now, I might be exaggerating to make a point but I hope that some of you might be able to recognise something of your thinking in either type…here are a few things that you can do in order to have less poorly attended events or ones that are oversubscribed with the wrong people:
- Be clear on what it is you are promoting at the event, in all our efforts to be helpful we sometimes forget where we are trying to get to with our marketing.
- Get really clear on who this is aimed at and why they would be interested. It is very easy to fill up the event with avid networkers or very new businesses which might be spot on, but just in case it isn’t…
- Create an event promotion plan and set a goal to the number of attendees you are aiming for. Set yourself a challenge and remember that you will lose about 20% on the night.
- Break your target down to activities and KPIs so you can measure and make changes throughout.
- Document everything so you can use it as a template for your next event plan.
I hope this is useful as a guideline and just in case you are planning an event and looking to discuss it in more details, get in touch.
‘The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life’ Steve Jobs
Around this time many business owners start to consider the New Year and some new ideas they may want to promote as part of their business plan. Even if you are not the type of business owners that regularly update their goals and marketing plan you may be considering a new product or service which you want to take the market in the New Year.
Planning for a new project is very exciting and great for business, although it poses a few challenges from a marketing and sales perspective, namely:
- Defining the product in terms of USPs, features and benefits.
- Defining your key target markets
- Taking the product to market
Out of the above, the biggest challenge, in my opinion, is the third one and particularly the ability to create a real buzz around your new product. In order to help, I searched the web for some inspiration and came across a Blog by Kissemetrics which covers a guide to building a buzz for your next product launch based on Steve Jobs’ numerous successful launches of Apple’s products. Whilst Apple product launches have become the stuff of legend, explains the Blog, there are a number of strategies which any company can deploy to make their own product launch a success. So here is a B2B tailored take on the guide;
- Make sure you are clear on how your new product addresses real issues that affect people’s lives. If you have to spend a lot of time explaining the benefits, you might find it hard to get the new product off the ground.
- Start planning your product exposure early, even before you have a launch date or a demo…. Social Media posts lend themselves to statements like ‘Just sat at the pub planning our next product launch in the New Year….’ Sometimes being a bit vague can help create interest in the marketplace.
- It helps if your new product is new and exciting within the framework of your industry. Even if it is not the most innovative product ever, emphasizing the key difference and innovation is always a good idea.
- Make an event out of your product launch, invite your colleagues and clients, even your mum, to celebrate the new chapter in your business. This will give you a great reason to shout about your new product and create some momentum.
- Finally, if you are having a launch, make sure you plan it and make it into a worthwhile event which people will enjoy and remember.
I hope this is helpful and gave you a few ideas. As always the devil in all of this is in the actual details so if you are launching a new product and need some help here are a few things you could do:
Go to our website to see the kind of support we can offer you and/or get in touch to discuss your ideas further.