I never would have thought that I’d work in advertising, marketing, or anything similar. Like I’ve said before–just take a look at Mad Men. Those guys are jerks. And I’m not that cool…or drunk.

My dad is a great businessman though, and my mom is really observant and insightful. All of that put together and you get some really great qualities for a marketer!
(Know as you read this post that I don’t know the answer to my own question; and I’d truly love to know your thoughts!)
What I can tell you that if you’re looking for a salesman that can “always be closing,” with me you’re pretty much out of luck. I’m not interested in fighting you, talking you into anything you don’t want, or wasting my breath if I’m not going to win (I know how contradictory this sounds).
On the other hand, I’m all about telling you how awesome something is, telling you a compelling story, and telling you what you’re missing out on if you don’t buy my product or service.

Touch Points

And just because you don’t buy it right that second doesn’t mean I wasn’t successful. See, there’s this guideline in advertising that when someone has 3-5 “touch points” with your company, then they’ll start to recognize you and form an opinion. So even if you said no now, my ad was one touch point with a potential customer. 
The thing about these touch points is that someone can form a positive opinion and eventually be a customer. Or they can form a negative opinion and not only never be a customer, but speak against my product. And that’s what I wonder if an aggressive salesman does these days. 
Those phone calls at 9pm = annoying.
The salesman that won’t stop talking = annoying
That guy that came to your door = annoying and a maybe little creepy.
On one hand I’m like, “gosh, what’s the point of advertising then? Isn’t someone always going to think what I do is annoying?”
Well, yes. But in today’s world you can choose so often what to pay attention to or ignore, who to follow online, who to unfollow, you can pay to not see ads or fast forward through them on TV. Sometimes you just have to remember to ignore people…

So what I’m saying is that in an online world saturated with information, where you can choose nearly everything you see, aren’t we going to push away from the aggressive sell?

What Then?

That doesn’t take all the point out of advertising though. Have a nice logo, website, and slogan or tag line — and put it out there! People still need those 3-5 touch points to remember your company. So making sure that you’re around in the right places is really important. 
I also think that advertising today should take time to develop a relationship, and it will inevitably gain a more loyal customer than an aggressive salesman can get you.
Remember I said, “I‘m all about telling you how awesome something is, telling you a compelling story, and telling you what you’re missing out on if you don’t buy my product?” This is what your marketing should look like.

What makes you stand out? Why are you different from your competitors? What great customer stories do you already have? Include those things in your marketing, and you’ll be noticed and begin to develop a relationship with people. They can follow your growth just by looking at your ads or website, and, at some point, they want to be part of it too. 

Apple is a great example of this. All their ads basically say, “don’t miss out on the newest thing.” Remember the iPhone craze (as I type this on my iPhone)? You didn’t want to miss out, did you? Now you either you own an iPhone or something remarkably similar…

What do you think: does being an aggressive salesman work anymore? Are there elements from that advertising style that we should still follow?

September 9, 2013

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