Monthly Archives: September 2020

Being distinctive makes brands memorable

I mentioned the Choice Factory in my last Blog, which covered first impressions. This time I wanted to use this helpful book to discuss the detail of making the right first impression, ensuring your brand is not only memorable but also engaging, which is key to creating lasting relationships.

In his book, Richard Shotton says, ‘Your task is to identify the formulaic rules of behaviour in the category you work in and subvert them.’ He provides an example from the comparison sites world, where up to 2008, all companies focused on their functional benefits, such as how many insurers are compared and how much money they have saved consumers. These in themselves were important factors but created no real reason to use one comparison site over the other.

Then in January 2009, used a more emotional route by creating the meerkat, Alexander Orlov, who was depicted as the eccentric owner of the company. As a result of using this approach, quote volume went up by 83% and the company achieved their entire 12 months’ objectives in just 9 weeks.  This was all down to their brand becoming a lot more memorable and relatable for consumers. As Shotton concludes, ‘Distinctiveness paid’.

The evidence proving that distinctive is memorable is compelling and supported by many behavioural studies over the years but still we see little evidence to many brands breaking convention. The two main reasons for that are:

  1. Companies rarely look outside of their own processes let alone outside of their industry. This results in many managers being reluctant to change their proven and tested approach. It also means that often, boards make decisions based on wanting to do what everyone else in the industry is already doing.
  2. Making a decision to break ranks and do something completely different, carries a big risk. If the approach fails, it lacks the safety in numbers or the support of a proven method. Many decision makers therefore tend to avoid this for reasons of self-preservation.

I think it is important to say that I am not suggesting that companies go out of their way to be different for the sake of being different. Sticking to your Brand culture, vision and values is very important and must be taken into account when planning a new approach. It is also important to consider other elements such as:

  • Your target markets and their views on your potential approach
  • The way you are portrayed in the marketplace
  • The products you intend to promote

Creating a successful lead generation campaign depends on many factors and achieving just one will not necessarily be enough. Standing out against the competition and getting the attention of your target market is an important element, but it has to fit in with an overall strategy.

At YBDT we are currently offering a free strategy workshop to support your next lead generation campaign. 2020 is soon drawing to a close making Q4 an important one to generate new sales revenue. Get in touch with us to book your session.

First impressions matter but they are only the start…

I am currently reading a great marketing book by Richard Shotton called The Choice Factory. In it, he talks about research into first impressions and how important they are to get right. Through examining behaviour research, Shotton develops the well-known phrase, “First impressions matter,” to explain that Brands are often associated with one characteristic which colours the rest of the beliefs consumers hold about them. The reason first impressions are so important, is because they often form the initial belief which then affects our relationship with the Brand forever.

The way I see it is, if we create a bad impression, we can put a prospect off our company for life but if we create a good impression, it is only the start of the relationship. As a Sales Director, you need to ensure that:

  • You and your team always create a good impression when you speak with a new prospect
  • Once you have had an initial conversation you need to follow it up in an appropriate way

The first action above is important to all businesses across all industries and requires planning, processes and training. The second action, however, is particularly important to companies who sell high value services and products. This is because the length and complexity of the sales process have a direct correlation to the cost and complexity of the product you sell.

If you are looking to grow your business in an effective manner, you need to develop a funnelling process which includes the following steps:

  1. Creating an initial interest = identifying leads
  2. Identifying interest and clarifying time scales= identifying prospects
  3. Following up and nurturing the prospects= converting to customers

Having worked with many clients to create leads and build a pipeline of prospects, we find that most companies struggle with the third stage and this is because the follow up process is difficult to define, control and manage. To improve this, we recommend that you consider the following elements:

  • Identify what you still need to find out about your prospect and take steps to close this gap. This can be done through looking at their website and LinkedIn profile or by speaking to the prospect directly using prepared questions.
  • Understand the prospect’s personality type and work out how to best communicate with them. You can read more about buying profiles in our previous Blog, here.
  • Agree a timeline for further communication and a point of purchase or review which you are aiming towards.
  • Break the process down into small goals that you plan for each communication point. Things like, finding out where the project is and understanding who else is involved; other ways in which you might be able to help can be useful steps in building a relationship.
  • Ensure that you are always checking if your contact is welcome and appropriate.
  • Push for a definitive answer where possible so you are not pursuing a false opportunity and inaccurately inflating your pipeline.

We hope this is helpful in supporting improved lead conversion and increased overall sales revenue. Having said that, creating the correct follow up process is not easy and most companies I come across get it wrong in some way.

As follow up is a big part of what we do, we have developed some good insights which we will be happy to share with you. Get in touch to discuss your specific requirements.