Today, I’m going to show you how to avoid creating an incorrect, damaging impression of your business. This is critically important, so let’s dive in.
You’re a professional. You have a superb business. You offer an excellent service. And you care passionately about your clients.
My question for you today my friend, is this: How clearly does that message come across in your marketing?
Greed, need or deed?
Think for a moment about the marketing messages you receive, from emails and social media updates, to advertisements, cold calls and direct mail, etc. Every marketing message is based on one of the following three motivations.
- Greed motivated: I want your money. Buy my stuff.
- Need motivated: I need you to buy from me. Please, please buy my stuff.
- Deed motivated: There’s something that I believe will help you, so I created it for you.
Greedy marketing repels people. Greed is one of those universally disliked attributes. It’s ugly. It’s selfish. We avoid greedy people and greedy businesses.
Needy marketing also repels people. As soon as the marketplace thinks a provider desperately needs sales or needs money urgently, it sets alarm bells ringing. “What if they’re going broke!?!” These alarm bells make people way less likely to buy from them.
Deed driven marketing attracts people. It makes us feel positive toward the person or brand behind it. It’s an easy message to connect with. Deed driven marketing is about sincerely wanting to help the people in your marketplace with the products or services you provide. It attracts their attention, makes them feel good about you and creates a powerful connection between you.
IMPORTANT: Here’s where the challenge comes in. Many small and medium-sized business owners who are deed focused, have no idea how greedy or needy their marketing looks. And it’s seriously hurting their business.
A couple of very common examples
One common example is the use of freebies, such as free initial consultations. These are widely used by service providers, who dabble with their marketing and have no idea how much damage they’re doing to their reputation.
When you attach zero value to your time, you send a damaging, toxic message to prospective clients. The marketplace knows that the best service providers are busy professionals, who have no need to give their time away for free. So, if they see a provider offering freebies, it tells them that the service provider is under-employed, getting too few referrals, in need (needy) or all three! This keeps the service provider in a negative loop, as the best clients are repelled and freebie hunters (who grab anything that’s free), are attracted to the free consultation like moths to a flame.
Another common example is special offers.
These can also come across as needy or greedy when handled incorrectly. And that’s exactly how the vast majority of small and medium-sized business owners handle special offers. They put their offers together, outside of a professional marketing strategy. In doing so, they can cause the marketplace to think there’s a so-called fire sale going on. Equally, the use of special offers can train your marketplace to wait for the next special offer, which makes it hard to sell anything at the regular price. This eats profits and it’s totally avoidable.
In short, it pays to be highly intentional regarding how you market your business. Always look at the bigger picture from an outside perspective. Make sure you’re projecting yourself as eager to help, not greedy or needy.