Are You Romancing Your Prospects or Turning Them Off?

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I thought this would be the perfect time to think about how you are romancing your suspects/prospects, or turning them off with your first encounter.

Are Traditional Marketing Tactics Extinct?

In this digital day and age, many companies have done away with many methods of traditional marketing, including direct mail. Many felt the traditional market was too saturated, others wanted to hop on the web-based bandwagon and some even threw their hands in the air and stopped marketing all together.

With the average number of corporate emails projected to be 228 sent and received by a worker a day in 20111, are your online marketing tactics as effective as they used to be?

The Saturated Digital Market

Talks about saturation, before the days of mainstream corporate email, were you sending and receiving over 200 letters or other correspondence a day? The barrier to entry in the online marketplace is nonexistent these days. It has become difficult for your suspects/prospects to differentiate an email from a reputable company versus an email from a spam engine. It’s time to differentiate your business.

Romance vs. Cheesy Pick-Up Lines

Marketing is somewhat of the courtship, a romance, to your prospective buyers. You wouldn’t pitch one pick-up line (“Do you have a Band-Aid? Because I skinned my knee falling for you.”), and expect to propose marriage directly after. So why do you think one email or one Google ad is going to seal the deal with your prospects?

They need to be romanced – flowers, chocolates, love letters, phone calls and dates – the whole bit. They need to know you are serious about starting this long-term relationship with them, that you are invested. Sound familiar?

Here is where traditional marketing comes back into play.

You need a mix of tactics to show your prospects that you are the right business/solution provider to take care of their needs. This means don’t just stop at the email campaigns or paying to show up as the right choice in the search engines. Show them you understand them, you want to help them and that they need you.

Expand Your Bag of Tricks

Don’t be a one-trick pony. Use all the weapons in your marketing arsenal to get their attention:

  1. Website – The first-impression. These days this is the first thing a prospect sees; don’t make it be their last. Represent yourself well with a clean design, optimized and relevant material, while giving them a reason to keep coming back (e.g. weekly blog, valuable white paper offers, event registration).
  2. Emails – The love letters. Nurture; send them valuable, unique information that your competitors aren’t offering.
  3. Pay-Per-Click Campaigns – The referral from a friend. Let them know you are the right choice, showing up when they don’t even know they are looking for you.
  4. Direct Mail – The flowers and chocolates. Remind them what you do and why you care; high-impact mailers delivered via courier get you the most attention and differentiate your offering from the competition.
  5. Phone Calls – The late-night calls. Following up on emails and direct-mail pieces is a must. Don’t let too much time go by without them hearing from you – include a date invite in the conversation (webinar, briefing or demo).
  6. Webinars/Executive Briefings/Product Demos – The dates. Exclusive webinars, executive briefings or scheduled product demos is where the rubber meets the road; you are arranging an event you know would interest the prospect to build your relationship (e.g. Inventory Management Webinars for Manufacturers and Distributors, Utilization Tracking and Management for Professional Service Firms).

Just remember, you’d never expected a marriage proposal after your first encounter, so don’t expect a good response from your prospects either.

Have you had success with romancing your prospects? I’d love to hear your story –

Until next time, don’t forget about the “flowers and chocolates” – your prospects will appreciate them just as much as your dates do.

1 Email’s Friendly Fire. The Wall Street Journal [Internet]. 2007 November 27. Available from:

– Software Delivered as Promised. No Surprises.

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