03 Nov Helping… the Future of Marketing?
Marketing is ultimately doing your best to tie interests to actions. Linking interest and action hopefully will create a prospective customer, which is called “filling the top of the funnel.”
There are 3 ways to fill the top of that funnel:
Top of Mind Awareness
Maintain a consistent presence in the marketplace of messaging, with ongoing advertising and promotions so that customers think of you first when they are ready to purchase whatever product or service you provide.
This is an expensive way to fill the funnel, as you have to always be present in the marketplace. It’s also getting harder to consistently reach audiences and make yourself known amongst all the competition.
Frame of Mind Awareness
The second way to fill the top of that funnel took off with the advent of Yahoo!, and then Google. In the “frame of mind awareness” approach you create content that makes it easier for your company to be found via search and social media, and wait for the leads to roll in.
Keep in mind that you don’t create demand with inbound marketing, per se, you just fulfill demand that exists organically.
There is now a new way to fill the funnel that may be the best of both worlds.
With social awareness, you seek to have the prospective customer allow you inside their circle of trust, where you become a valuable resource for them. You are the go-to person in all things relating to your business.
Then, when the customer is ready to buy, they don’t have to go find you, because you’re already there.
Many companies argue that it is counter-intuitive to give away your help for free. Remember: sell something, and you make a customer. Help someone, and you make a customer for life.
In a world where every prospective customer is facing an invitation overwhelm, where every business is asking people to follow their tweets, read their blog, or watch their videos, you must resist the temptation to communicate solely and endlessly about your company, hoping for a quick sale.
By helping your customers learn the very services you offer you become a trusted friend and you can succeed in a world where the balance of marketing power has swung dramatically in favor of the customer.
How do you help your prospective clients and customers?