The age of the virtual consumer is here. Through the power of whatever device we happen to be holding and using at a given moment, we can buy something, sell something, make an appointment, cancel one, leave a message, search for something (even if we’re not quite sure what it is), “listen” to and identify a song that we can’t quite name, and even peak through a webcam on the other side of the world. And we can do it all from the comfort of a cushy recliner or amidst the hustle and bustle of a crowded subway.
My, what a long way we’ve come in just a decade or so since the first iPhone debuted in 2007 and the smartphone/tablet “revolution” ensued.
As easy as our devices have made it for us to access information, so too have they made it possible for us to avoid information or filter it out altogether.
- We use apps and settings to block calls and text messages from people we don’t want to hear from.
- More than 200 million of us are on the do not call list.
- We ignore calls from numbers we don’t recognize.
- We use voice mail to screen calls.
- We filter emails, casting suspected spam to the dreaded junk folder.
We pause live programming or use DVRs to skip over ads in our favorite programs.
- We buy streaming services to listen to music we could get for free to avoid as much advertising as possible.
- We use ad blockers to prevent pop-ups and other online annoyances from impeding our web browsing.
Sure, some unwanted information still gets through despite our best efforts—but for the most part, when that happens, that information is regarded with contempt and manually added to our junkpiles of information we don’t want.
Ironic, isn’t it, that in this so-called information age, we’ve all become somewhat savvy at blocking much of that information from ever reaching us?
Give them What They Want
The job of connecting with consumers on a meaningful basis these days can be tough—but it’s not impossible. So how do marketers communicate with people who don’t want to be interrupted?
MAKE THEM WANT TO COME TO YOU by making your product/service, or the information you provide about your industry, so valuable that it becomes irresistible to them.
- Blogs featuring timely information and content
- Educational articles aimed at helping the decision makers in your target audience make the decision to buy your product or service.
- Relevant and FUN Contests and Promotions
- DIY/How-to guides
- Product Demos and Videos
GO WHERE YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE GOES to make decisions and share information about the products or services they use and the information/entertainment they consume.
- Engage with your customers/prospects on social media.
- Point out a need they have that only your product or service can satisfy.
- Describe a potential opportunity for them/their company with your brand.
- Answer questions in an online forum, then follow up with resources.
- Post a link to a blog/article your company just published.
- Invite them to an upcoming webinar or educational event your company is hosting.
Do Not Disturb
Through their actions, today’s consumers clearly demonstrate a “Do Not Disturb” mentality.
And who can blame us/them? With the omnipresence of mobile devices and wireless connectivity, if we did not put up barriers our lives would be a 24/7 digital nightmare of calls, text messages, and various “alert notifications” from this app and that app.
Thus, the role for marketers and sales people these days is to tell their brand stories and convert leads into paying customers unobtrusively by becoming a WANTED part of their target customer’s daily lives and thirst for content.
- How can you identify the types of information your target customers desire most?
- How can you provide valuable content they can’t get elsewhere?
- How can you demonstrate your brand’s value to them?
- What no/low price-point can you provide so target customers can get a taste of what your brand has to offer before they are willing to make a bigger commitment?
Share your thoughts and ideas here. Curious monkeyz want to know!
Paul June is King Monkey of BARREL O'MONKEYZ, a San Diego-based strategic marketing agency specializing in Sports and Active Lifestyle markets. We serve as a seasoned, outsourced marketing team for companies looking to ramp up sales and launch new products. Our barrel is full of talent and creative arms ready to prove we don’t just monkey around!