Creatively and effectively push beyond meeting the needs and desires of a buyer or user. Without first making this the goal and then accomplishing it, there’s little chance of reaching into a market. Above all, find out what your audience (your market) wants – what would radically improve their lives or dazzle them with delight. This requires a bit of work, to say the least. Perhaps you’ve already done this in some suitable way. Maybe you’ve created something that has received an embrace from those who buy it or use it. Nevertheless, there’s always more to learn from them. And, if you don’t think so, you’re not ready to win.
Exceed expectations in an amplified manner as opposed to simply meeting needs. Fulfill desires in full force. Create an experiential memory that lingers and resurfaces in your customer’s recollections. Exploit the resulting traffic or promotion in ways that are beneficial to all. These are the basic components of adoption.
Focus on novelty and uniqueness, but be utilitarian, if possible. Novelty is best when it meets needs and most satisfying when it does so with supreme style and design.
Make it fun. Everybody likes to be entertained or better yet blown away. Everybody likes to play. So, how do you get people hooked in and elated? How do you get folks to play hard? Give them a tangible goal to extend beyond the quotidian with an experiential means. Who doesn’t love to hunt treasure? Who would turn down random bedazzlement? Whatever you do make sure that those involved come away with a story. People remember stories and love to tell them. Good stories replicate and spread quickly.
As an exercise, take on the mindset that, “All Business Is Show Business”.
Let your buyers become a part of your company or a part of your campaign. There are several ways to do this. One way is to let users provide advertising content or to be made visible in some way related to your product or service. Amazon is a perfect example of incorporating their buyers into the very fabric of the company.
It’s time to get over any fear of negative word-of-mouth impact. Face problems. Deal with discontent in a way that turns it around. Endeavor to realize problems more rapidly by accepting the inevitability of a less-than-perfect experience for many of your customers, and get close enough to them to find out when it happens and to make it good with visceral immediacy.
Giveaways and complimentary gifts are great ways to win loyalty and to get folks to talk about your company. However, don’t even bother if you can’t find something that is truly novel or cause for excitement. Come up with something that folks will want to bring to the office, or share with their friends. Forget giving gifts, if they are going to fast become dumpster content. Think: unlike anything seen before or off the hook.
Focus on the persona of your target. Focus on the moment. Capture the spirit of your audience. Capture the spirit of the place and the time. Augment each of these elements as richly as possible.
How to push the phrase “Tell a Friend” to the “Sell a Friend” level? It’s every business’ dream to have people selling their products by excited, cost-free, word-of-mouth inducements. A cheap, global, on-the-ground sales team can be yours, if you figure out a way for people to express themselves in your company’s name. If you need some help with this concept (as it seems to be out of reach for many), check out WOMMA – the Word of Mouth Marketing Association – www.womma.org.
Nudity. Uber novelty. Decadence. Hyperlushness, Glitterbombing and Mindbending Media: These are just a few of the things you can use to to excite. Don’t know what these are? Use your imagination. Glitterbomb your way to the 10 o’clock news, and then put your story out but only to an exclusive few at first. Then to all.
Invite reviews. Induce reviews. Beg for reviews. When you’ve gone out of your way to help a customer, by all means, politely ask them to take a moment and give you a review on your Yahoo! local listing, or any place where they can do the same. Another kind of review is a kind you facilitate.
Be a resource. If you have a website, provide users with information about your industry. Give solid, effective tips and advice. Link to as many other resources as you can. Keep the links current, relevant and insightful. Become an authority on topics that correspond to what you sell. Get your CEO blogging about what she loves (which will hopefully include the products you sell). Share your knowledge and expertise. Provide tools that inform your customers or any means to allow buyers to buy with confidence. Implementing a means to let customers share reviews is a particularly good method, which harkens back to the word-of-mouth element. The benefits of product reviews are profound (believe it). A great example of a reviews pioneer online is New Egg (www.newegg.com).
Provide as many ways as possible for users to calculate, communicate, comment, customize, create, connect, compare, compose, correct, cross-reference, celebrate, cluster, classify, clip and call up again. And, make sure to ask your customers what they would most want from your business. Give great choices and follow through. Let users know that you listened and acted.
Gratitude. Genuineness. Consistency. Institute at least 5 new ways to show your appreciation, increase transparency and adhere to stable policy and practice in your business processes.
Use children as a source of market knowledge. Hipness is of great value. Use trend-setting teenagers to find out what’s emerging or hip. Use the information to make your campaigns “of the moment”. You may be cool, but you’ll be surprised at what you’ve failed to gather from the world of pop culture.
Utilize incentives. Get referral kick-backs into the mix. Affiliate marketing is powerful incentive prospect. It provides inbound links, spreads the word at a cost you set, and it builds your visibility in a way that’s mostly in your control. And, there are good platforms that make the process easy to establish. Share the wealth.
Hire people who are truly excited about your company. Make those you hire stakeholders in the company, whether by ample incentive stock options, profit-sharing, commission or generous performance bonuses. Your sales department doesn’t have to be the only department selling your product or service.
If you make it possible for employees to gain from the company’s success, the sales folks won’t be the only people cold-calling. There is perhaps nothing more powerful than internal excitement. When you give your employees a reason to dig in, you can bet the business on the fact that they will be spreading the word like no one else.