Blog - Written by on Tuesday, July 7, 2009 13:57

100 Thoughts on Marketing

Leo Babauta has written the perfect post for some of the thoughts I’ve been having about marketing, social media and the age of the customer. In it, he encourages us to be lusting for life, not stuff. I couldn’t agree more. I find that the more I know myself, the more refined and specific grows my taste on wines, food and yes, stuff – like jewelry, clothing, cars, even vacations.

Plus, there’s something else – I’m all bought out. In fact, it’s been a couple of years that I started paring down what I own and being very deliberate about purchasing only when I need something and mostly to replace something else. Take my iron, I’ve had that for 15 years (wow, do they make things that last that long?).

It seems that the more time I spend creating and being creative – at work and with writing on the blog, etc. – the less I need to acquire things.

Part of the process and the joy is to get to know new people, to exchange ideas and make connections and the realization that you cannot touch someone without being touched in return. Which is a far better experience than the momentary gratification of a new thing. Ok, maybe technology warrants a separate post, I’m an aspiring geek and all that.

You probably find this, too – the less you buy, the less you want.

This is a big problem for marketers, isn’t it? And for an economy that based its faith on consumers, which is probably why companies are ill organized to deal with customers anymore. Everything was optimized towards that sale of a certain kind of thing. That’s probably why the amount of spam has never been greater.

The social part of digital experiences has unleashed or highlighted – along with awakening the creator in us – a desire to be that is far greater than that to have. Presence tools like twitpic and many more Twitter apps are very much in vogue. A while back we took the 100 thing challenge.

Stuff, especially marketing stuff, is due for a tune up. Let’s take the meaning challenge for marketing. Here are 100 thoughts:

• be short on pages for the Web site, long on user experiences
• optimize the relationship, not the click throughs
• let the user guide your next steps
• provide experiences
• use multimedia for learners and readers with different styles/preferences
• use your content and smarts to elevate the other
• be relevant
• give trust and care
• realize that the most important person on the phone is the customer
• make the product rock
• help the customer rock
• ask questions and listen
• get personal and stay personable
• communicate often, simply, kindly
• be engaged and participate
• simplify
• make it easy to deal with you by being where people are
• learn, improve, innovate
• liberate your inner fan often
• transform your business processes
• change your assumptions
• think community vs. transactions
• collaborate internally
• create value
• be passionate
• be authentic
• stay open to change
• provide a platform for customers to find others with like interests
• build interaction in your conversations
• integrate, connect the dots, connect
• breathe life into what you do
• create magic
• learn to speak your customer’s language
• test your ideas with the marketplace
• play
• use games to accelerate learning
• allow your fans to brag about your products and services
• let your employees be evangelists
• observe more, judge less
• watch the social triggers that make stuff happen
• figure out where you can be more transparent
• streamline your onboarding
• make customers wish they never left by throwing them a party when parting ways
• leave the door open
• make realistic promises you can keep
• go the extra mile
• smile
• be contagious
• think long term, prepare to excel each moment
• share
• think relationships more than public
• keep the fire in your belly burning
• scrap most brochures, make eBooks – or your could go the other way and
use your brochures as souvenirs of beauty and style
• make your marketing materials not just simpler, but fun, too
• delight and surprise (in a good way)
• give customers useful data about themselves
• provide a better context around customer experience
• communicate more
• contribute to meaningful conversations
• empower your experience designers
• talk to the people who want to talk with you
• learn to deal with the challenges those people face, when they face them
• overdeliver
• let special circumstances guide pricing
• be hungry for improvement
• discover the deep emotional associations with your brand
• find out when to dial in intimacy and camaraderie
• find your tribe and lead it
• make your coupons collectibles
• audition customers for private screenings/previews of your new product
• help your customers do more with you and with less stuff
• be agile
• adapt
• be portable – mobile is the next technology
• be sincere
• cultivate relationships and ideas
• earn your media
• break down your silos
• help build networks of interest or communities of practice
• connect networks with each other
• invest in your customers
• tell the customer story
• know your story and values and live them
• focus on the product and the experience first
• remember that changing the world can also mean making someone’s life easier
• put people before procedures whenever you can
• solve customer problems
• learn about the ways people respond to your content online
• find ways to match your content better with the people who want it (it may cost you more)
• educate
• entertain
• be curious, interested and interesting
• think about the many-to-many relationships in the marketplace
• follow through
• consider dimensional not just as a direct marketing tool
• write great emails – packed with knowledge, easy to read and share
• end emails only to those who sign up
• encourage sharing by giving the example
• mix it up – it’s not all about you, make it about the industry, and the people

A penny for your thoughts?

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