Is your campaign tired? Or are you?

Look at those fresh new messages and materials. So exciting! New initiatives to launch. Shiny new toys to play with. But winter has dragged on, and your spring-themed campaign seems ill-timed just yet. The tools and techniques you’ve been using seem tired and trite. Or are they?

Marketing and sales often encounter a kind of ennui with their campaigns just before the change of season – and especially if the season doesn’t seem to be changing as fast as it should. The common refrain is, “Our customers are tired of this! We’ve told them all about this already!” The reality is, you are not your customer’s only focus. (There, we said it. Right out loud.) So while it may be true that they’ve heard your message, and that they’re not sure you’ll have anything new to say, this doldrums of delivery that you’re in, is something you can change. In fact, it may not be that they are bored at all…it may be you who is just tired of sounding enthusiastic about the same old message. What are you to do?

Bear in mind that in sales, marketing, customer service…nearly anything that requires you to be customer-facing, attitude is altitude. Look for ways to recharge your batteries so you can put one last push on, before spring really does arrive. Start integrating a few new spring pieces of clothing into your wardrobe. Get a new haircut. Launch a new fitness routine. Begin a course that will make you sharper for the upcoming season. All of these will give you a feeling of accomplishment that will lift you up.

Next, check your assumptions. Visit clients and get a recap of their recall of key messages you’ve delivered this cycle. Make sure you correct any misperceptions so you’re starting from the same page when new selling models or tools are introduced. Consider any knowledge gaps as you visualize who is ready to receive the message of your next campaign, and who can use just a bit more personal attention to get them there.

Lastly and most importantly, remind yourself and your team of your achievements. Consider a celebration and final team incentive challenge as you wind down winter and get ready for spring. Because although it might not seem like it on a stormy day, the sun really is on its way.

Give them what they want!

Do you have a global business, or are you considering expanding or exporting? You might know that we’ve been travelling this past week – to the UK and Germany. One of our favourite things to do when we’re in a new market or a foreign country, is to explore an ordinary activity, and ask, “what’s different here”?

Above is the condiments collection at a Sainsbury’s cafeteria. The breakfasts were similar, with a few different menu items (even here in Canada the big breakfast doesn’t differ that much from the Full English Breakfast). But this collection of condiments was very different than what we might receive with the average cheap and cheerful breakfast here at home. Some of the things that reminded us that every market develops in response to customers, not the other way around, included:

Condiments collections are adapted to local tastes, even in quite similar jurisdictions. Payment options varied from country to country. “Contactless” – the equivalent of our debit “tap” – was popular in the UK, but didn’t always work with foreign cards like ours. In Germany, debit isn’t an option in most places unless you have a local account. And although many products on the shelves were easily identifiable, even under new brand names, once in awhile there were packages and presentations that completely confounded us.

So what’s all this got to do with you and your customers? Just a friendly reminder, that it’s about what *they* want, not about what you want to give them. Do yourself a favour, and make sure you consider the small subtleties that put the local in your global offerings. You’ll be glad you did.

I’m Megann Willson, and I’m one of the partners here at PANOPTIKA. We work with you and your team to help you see everything you need to know to make better decisions, so you can find, know, and keep your best customers. You can find more content from us daily on Twitter, LinkedIn, or Facebook. And for weekly offers, recommendations, and ideas, sign up for content specially curated for you. We’ve added a button below to make it easy. 


3 ways targeting will help you build a better product

Target with arrows
Last week was jam-packed with events! We had a great time at one of them, watching startups, students, facilitators and generally-interested folks collaborate to come up with new ideas to help a young business grow and flourish. Everything was going swimmingly, until we heard this: 

“The first iteration of our product has had a great response and excellent feedback. With release 2 we hope to find out who our target market is.”

SCREEEEEEEEECH! What’s wrong with this picture? We love to work with growing companies, helping them develop and build their business model and validate their canvas. Getting them to ship their MVP (minimum viable product) instead of adding every possible feature all at once is exciting! Can you imagine our disappointment when we hear words that mean, “We came up with a solution to a problem, or helped a customer do a job that needs doing…but we don’t know who that customer is”?

If you’ve got a product or a prototype, and you haven’t yet validated that there are customers, and who those customers are, you’re investing an awful lot of effort in something that may never fly. Wouldn’t you rather have a product that really does “sell itself”, because it:

  1. Is just what your customer needs?
  2. Has a customer who is already looking for a solution, and is willing to pay?
  3. Adds value in some way that other solutions don’t?

If you’re worried that your latest product or service has gotten off on the wrong foot, and is flying around in search of a customer, we can help you figure out who the customer is, or isn’t, and validate that they want what you’re selling. Moreover, let’s put together your Value Proposition Canvas together, and get your business growing!

We’re Megann and Steve Willson, and we’re the Partners and Founders here at PANOPTIKA. If you need help to find, understand, or keep customers, and you’re a B2B (business-to-business) company, you’re in OUR target market. We’ll help you grow your business and make more money. You can find us on Twitter, on Facebook, or on LinkedIn. With a click of the orange button below this post, you can also subscribe for insights, offers, and ideas to help you see everything you need to know, to make better decisions.