Whether you’re someone starting a business, a marketer trying to move the needle for your company—or an executive trying to figure out how you can grow more effectively—foggy and confusing marketing is costing you thousands of dollars and keeping you from seeing your way to the top.
Humans have a tendency to complicate things—especially our marketing materials because we don’t understand how to connect and engage customers correctly. The human brain is drawn to CLARITY and away from CONFUSION. If customers are confused about what you offer, they’ll look past you for somebody who can say it clearly. (Source: StoryBrand)
In the following, I’m going to list three factors on why you are wasting thousands of dollars on marketing and why your marketing is foggy and confusing your customers.
1. You leave marketing to a designer
Most businesses will approach their marketing material (website, ad, brochure, email, catalog etc.) by looking to a graphic designer or a design agency. This is all well and good, but the problem with this approach is that that designer is not concerned about how to communicate your product or service as much as they should be—they are only really concerned on making your marketing material look amazing.
Don’t get me wrong—amazing visuals are important and graphic designers are extremely critical to your business’ success, but this one-sided approach is not going to grow your business or give you a faster return on investment.
I started my career as a designer back in 1998. Back then and for the next 10 years, I was only concerned (ninety percent of the time) on making a website, brochure or advertisement look awesome for my client. This is what was taught to me in College. “If it looks good, it has to be good,” because at our core, we think like artists, not marketers! As time went on, I began to wonder why my work wasn’t generating the results my clients expected, especially when data and analytics became more prevalent in marketing campaigns. These lack-luster results lead me on a journey to discover how to communicate more effectively. I wanted to know the secret behind what moved people to buy? I wanted to uncover the key on how to hold a person’s attention long enough to create a memorable brand connection.
What I concluded after almost 20 years of design and then marketing is that people love pretty pictures, but if the words don’t address your prospects fundamental problem—plainly and directly—“you confuse them and eventually lose them.” (Source: StoryBrand) Sounds simple enough; however, you’d be amazed by how so many brands fail to capture this on their websites and every other piece of marketing they produce.
2. You’re not addressing your customer’s problems
Humans are natural problem solvers. We love to figure out our best friend’s relationship woes, we ponder and argue over politics, we post advice on Facebook about someone’s issue with their dog, and we even seek in our own lives to get smarter, faster, slimmer, or at least be more accepted. This natural human inclination is the first step in understanding how to make your marketing more effective. The more you talk about your customer’s problems, the more you will hold their attention and have greater success in moving them to your desired action.
People who have a deep desire to solve a baffling problem will take to the internet 90% of the time. If your website doesn’t communicate the customer’s problem clearly, when they first hit your home page, you lose.
3. You are not the hero, they are
Another great mistake that is costing you money is that businesses tend to put themselves before their customers in their messaging. They lead with messaging about how great they are, how many awards they’ve won, how superior, their product’s features are and how excellent their team is. That’s all very important, but that information means nothing to a customer who is quickly trying to understand your service or product over your competition. Moreover, to further complicate the issue, in most cases, these customers may not even know or have clearly defined what their problem is! You must put your customer’s problems first, seek to determine the problem and then show them how you solve it. Then and only then, through their journey of discovering who or what can solve their problem (best and for the right price) do you communicate these other great things about your company. So many businesses lose customers because according to the customer, all they knew about your brand was that they were the best at something that meant a lot to them, but not much to the customer.
Wasted marketing dollars take away from your ability to make that next hire, upgrade your equipment, expand office space or save for retirement. Not getting your marketing right is stymieing your growth and success.
By taking the time to clarify your message and figure out these aspects of your story, you will be able to transform your marketing, attract new customers and stand out in the crowded marketplace.
If you’d like to check out the book StoryBrand or learn more about the process yourself you can:
- Take an Online Workshop
- Attend a 2-Day in-person workshop in Nashville
- Download the StoryBrand Marketing Roadmap
You can also schedule a call with me, and get a clear plan on how stand out in the crowded marketplace.
CLEAR MESSAGING TASKLIST
How much is unclear messaging costing you?
The following tasklist will help you (the business leader, director or executive) in the outdoor, hunting, adventure or shooting sports industry determine if your message is clear. It will help you and your team think about how to make your customer “the hero,” and position your brand as the “the guide” that will revolutionize your marketing.
- Introduction to a 7-part framework to clarify your message
- Know what to say and what order to say it in
- Give your team a messaging process that can be implemented across all your marketing materials