What Would Beethoven Think – Traditional vs. Today’s Marketing

Last week, my wife and I attended a concert by TransSiberian Orchestra of their CD Beethoven’s Last Night.  Besides the incredible theatrics and pyrotechnics, the music was phenomenal.  But what really got me think was, “What would Beethoven think if he heard his music performed today by a rock band?”  I would have to think he would be amazed  as well as pleased to hear how it has survived for 200 years.

That started me thinking about how the online marketing channels have changed and evolved.  Our marketing message is the same, developing customer trust and brand recognition.   But the presentation and the delivery of the message has changed.  Old school thinking is to have an elaborate presentation (tv commercial, print advertisement or radio spot) and blast your message out.  Today, interruption marketing (traditional advertising) is not nearly as effective as permission marketing using social media.  Why should your prospect trust your ad, when within a matter of minutes, they can have dozens of friend recommendations for what you offer.

To bring this back to my TSO concert experience, would I be writing this article had it been a traditional chamber orchestra performing the same music.  Not likely.  Not because the message of the music was any less extraordinary.  The difference is in the delivery of the message.  Being an old rock and roller, I associate with driving beat of the drums and bass guitar, the roller coaster of emotions from the melody and the soul piercing vocal performance.  There’s a good chance I would have slept through a chamber orchestra.

Know your audience and choose the message and channel that’s right for them.  In old school marketing, advertisers didn’t run tv commercials for laundry detergent on ESPN.  Their audience isn’t tuned in to that channel.  If you audience is B2C (business to consumer), LinkedIn may not be the place to connect with them.  On the other hand, if your target audience is executives and CEO’s, Facebook may be a waste of your time.   While it seems like a no brainer to be where your audience/customer/clients are, oftentimes, business owners get caught up in the hype about a specific social media channel, then wonder why it didn’t produce any results.

Target your message to the channel your audience is on.  If you do it well, you will be a rock star in your industry and the standing ovation you get will be the ringing of your cash register.

Gary Wagnon is the owner of 800biz Ninja Marketing Strategies and the Ninja Marketing Dojo, a program designed to help businesses master all aspects of online marketing.  The goal of the Ninja Marketing Dojo is to improve search engine rankings, increase web site traffic and convert more browsers into buyers.


Ninja Marketing Tip – Know Your Own Business Strength

When was the last time you gave serious thought to what you’re business is about? For many, the last time was when they wrote their business plan. Businesses are created because the owner saw a niche that they could fill or they traded a paycheck for business ownership.

As a business grows and evolves, so do its strengths and weaknesses. But often times, the marketing message of the business does not change to reflect those. For your businesses stand out above the competition, you must focus on your strengths rather than trying to be like the competition.

Here are some questions to help you identify your strengths and regain your focus.

  1. What do we do better than the competition?
  2. What does the competition do better than we do?
  3. Why would a customer choose to do business with us?
  4. What do our customers say they like about our service/product?
  5. Do we really give good customer service? If so, how specifically do we provide good service?
  6. Is price a factor in closing a sale?

I went through this exercise with a prospect of new website client recently and the answers were eye opening.  When I asked what they did better than the competition, they answered, “we all do about the same thing.” So why would I choose your business if you are the same as everyone else? And doesn’t it come down to price at that point? If you’re no different than the competition, then I’m going make my decision based on the lowest price.

During a different interview, I asked the same question and the response I got was, “we are better at customer service.” Oh yeah. That’s the same thing the competition said about you. How do you know you give better customer service? What specifically do you do that’s above and beyond the norm? And how do you measure and monitor your customer service? You may not hear complaints but that doesn’t mean your service was that good. The silence of customers leaving may speak louder than their words.


Find your strengths and shout those throughout your marketing messages. Facebook them, tweet them and blog about them. Make your service or product special. While talking with client that does mobile auto repair, we replaced the phrase “basic diagnostic test” with “Company Name Comprehensive Initial Diagnostic test.” Did he change any of his procedures? No, but now the message conveys a whole different meaning.

What are your strengths? And what is the message your sending?

Gary Wagnon is the owner of 800biz Ninja Marketing Strategies and the Ninja Marketing Dojo, a program designed to help businesses master all aspects of online marketing.  The goal of the Ninja Marketing Dojo is to improve search engine rankings, increase web site traffic and convert more browsers into buyers.


Ninja Marketing Tip – Have an Out Of Body Experience

I had a phone call this morning from a salesperson (I use the term loosely) offering to sell me advertising.  I felt a desperate need to have 911 standing by in case she passed away on the phone.  In a dialogue that was lacking in excitement or enthusiasm,  it was almost painful to listen to.

The caller started by introducing themself and saying they were offering to sell me advertising.  Woo hoo!  Just what I wanted this morning, to be sold advertising.  When I quizzed her about her publication and whether it was a good fit for business-to-business advertising, her response was “you’d be surprised”.  I’m not sure if that meant I’d be surprised if I got any results, or if I’d be surprised at how many people blindly bought without knowing the effectiveness of the publication.  Needless to say I was not impressed.

At one point during the conversation she said local businesses that need a website could call me and explain their problem, then I could go out to their house and take care of.

As an online marketing guy I typically don’t make house calls to fix a computer problem. Major hint: learn what your prospect does so you can talk halfway intelligently.

So this conversation got me thinking about how you communicate with prospects, whether on the phone, your website or your social media sites.  Are you enthusiastic about your product or service?  (If you’re not, I’m sure not going to be.)  Do you talk about you, or do you talk about how you are the answer to my problem/pain/needs/prayers?

Take a trip outside your body and look at the message you are sending out.  If you were considering  doing business with you, would you or would you buy from your competition?


Gary Wagnon is the CMN (Chief Marketing Ninja) at 800biz Online Marketing Solutions.  Using an integrated approach to online marketing (combining web site design, search engine optimization, social media and action driven content), 800biz specializes in helping businesses stand out above the competition and drive more traffic to their door.


Social Media – Top 10 Reasons You Need To Post and Tweet

Using social media to market your business is not an option anymore. More than 40% of small businesses don’t have websites and another 25% opt not to sell their products or services on the Internet.  You still have time to join the minority.


Here are the top 10 reasons for you to post, friend and tweet right now:

10. Everyone is out there. Social media sites are the new communities. It’s where people interact, voice their opinions, get their news and shop.

9. The world is your marketplace.Unless you have to physically hold your client’s hand or can’t carry online inventory, with a PayPal account and an “Order Now” button you can do business everywhere.

8. Give them something to talk about. One of the fastest ways to spread your words is with outrageousness. This creates stories to tell. People will love to read them and share them. If their friends love them and share them, the next thing you know, you’re Susan Boyle.susan-boyle

7. Word of mouth is back. Social media is the perfect venue for spreading the much-coveted (and free) word of mouth advertising. The social sites give you access to an audience that has an audience that has an audience.

6. No one is an expert. A handful of people have reached big audiences with their advice or product. But, because of the web’s sheer complexity, no one has mastered any niche. If you really know your stuff, go for it.

5. It’s cheap. If you want to spend the time and learn to do it yourself, you can set up your social media accounts for nothing. Well, it will probably require a few pots of coffee to get you through the process.

4. It’s an addiction. People are spending hours a day posting and tweeting. In the last century, this obsession was known as television. This time around it’s interactive, so get out there and interact. It won’t cost you $1 million for a 30 second spot.

3. Make a difference. Social media communities are at their best when spreading the meaningful – promoting a charity, sending prayers and good wishes and even just putting out positive vibe. Get those stories started yourself.

2. You can be brief. Especially in the social media communities, the shorter your message the better. Isn’t it a lot easier to write a 140 character tweet than a 500 word sales letter?

and the #1 reason to participate in social media:

1. Promote your business. Yes, you can do that here too. The recommended ratio of business to advice and information posts is about 10 to 1. Don’t be obnoxious, promote a good thing and people will buy.

The major social media sites already report over 500 million members. Do the math. You could probably find a few thousand followers among that population, and probably make at least a few hundred sales.

Are you struggling with what to say?  “Open the Door to a World of Mouth, Get Your Message Heard & Create a Following That Does Your Advertising for You” e-book gives you a blueprint for writing compelling copy for the web and for your social media.  Get your copy now at www.writeon800biz.com

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