I have a question for you this month.
How many marketing messages (commercials, phone calls, junk mail, web ads, everything.) do you think the average American encounters every day? Seriously, stop reading for a second, and take a wild guess. Once you have your guess, read on for the answer.
Marketing is everywhere. Can you think of a single website that doesn’t have marketing in it? They are few and far between. You can’t drive down the street without seeing some marketing. Check your mail or pick up the phone, and it’s there.
Our brains have learned that there are many many distractions in our lives that will lead us to parting with money or at least wasting time. We’re used to it. So we tune the vast majority of it out. We are all skilled at ignoring the noise.
Ready for the answer? First, let me guess what you guessed. I bet you guessed somewhere between three hundred and a thousand. The actual number is a bit hard to measure as you might imagine. According to Bill Glazer (A very successful marketer for those who don’t know the name) the average American encounters 3,191 marketing messages and ads per day. According to J. Walker Smith of Chapel Hill, NC based Yankelovich, in a 2005 USA Today article, the number is between 3,500 and 5,000. Today, it’s likely even higher.
So, why did I spend all this time just to get to that number? Because, I want you to understand just how vital it is for your marketing messages to break through the noise and get noticed. Before long you’ll be competing with ten thousand other marketing efforts every day. To really get that, it helps to think about the question before you learn the answer.
You have to stand out from the competition to take the lead. That goes for websites and search engine marketing in addition to everything else. When your website uses the same looks, lines and messages as your competitors you stay a part of the background noise. When your page comes up in search results it has to grab the searcher’s attention to get clicked. (Being the first result is a great way to get noticed!) When your pay per click ad shows up it will be right next to other ads. It has to stand out.
Get the point?
So, how do you stand out? I say be creative, bold, and real. Bill Glazer will tell you to be outrageous. Don’t be afraid to do something different. Make bold statements. Never underestimate the importance of an eye-catching headline. Whatever you do, be real. We’ve all learned to expect phoniness and misleading statements from marketing. Stand out by being yourself: honest and human.
One last tip. Stop copying your competition’s marketing strategies. The best that can come of that is that you’ll keep pace, a little behind the rest. The worst case is when they’re copying you too. You’ll end up with marketing about as effective as a photocopy of a photocopy is pretty.
As usual, if you’d like some help making your business stand out, get in touch with me. You can hit that reply button right now and get your message straight into my primary in-box.
Know someone who might benefit from this message? Forward it on!
To the Success of Small Businesses Everywhere,
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