Articles Tagged ‘Marketing tips’

Three BIG Marketing Lessons From College Football

Friday, December 23rd, 2011

Well, it’s that time of year again for football fans: college bowl season. From car companies to credit cards, corporate America and colleges from across the land unite and become allies to promote their names, brands, prestige, hype, and oh…I almost forgot, play a game called football.

College football is always a hot topic of conversation, especially with proud alumni from competing schools, but as a marketing professional and student of persuasion, I’m always intrigued as to why people get so fired up and create debate when there are so many other competing options for time, attention, and priorities.

With that in mind, here are three BIG marketing lessons from college football as we enter the season of highly hyped and promoted Bowl games.

#1. Cash is king. Companies of all shapes and sizes spend major money sponsoring everything from naming rights, half-time shows, to other game related promotions in the constant battle to build their brands and force their way into the mind of fans and competitors.

Universities who typically pride themselves as being institutions of “higher learning” and separate from business reverse course during football season and seem to quickly forget why they exist and partner with current and newly created Bowl Games for one central reason: money.

Yes, school pride (Go WMU Broncos – BBA, 1994!) is a major reason cited and spoken by University brass for being a part of a Bowl game, but don’t be fooled by this blanket response as being the main one. At the end of the day it’s not only about pride, but the cash. Football is a huge business in the U.S. and major money maker for many colleges. With a range of revenue streams from merchandise, ticket sales to TV related Bowl payouts; the colleges use the gridiron as much more than a football game with rivalries and school pride, but as a source of revenue.

Now, I’m not saying or implying that this is good or bad, but the fact is universities will often look the other way when publicity and large amounts of money, even from companies they’d sometimes never consider endorsing, are placed before them.

#2. Conversations engage and pull people in. Colleges also love Bowl football games for the conversations they build amongst alumni, current students, and prospective new students and possible ‘blue-chip’ football prospects weighing their university against others salivating to recruit them.

I have to laugh out loud each season how the BCS (Bowl Championship Series) committee denies fans a playoff system and rely on hype, polls, and biased coaches votes to generate massive amounts of publicity, press, passion, and heated conversations. Do you really think the BCS cares or are willing to listen to fan concerns? Are they secretly laughing behind closed doors?
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Intimidated by Social Media?

Thursday, December 15th, 2011

Here’s How to Get Started

I’ve talked to so many small business owners who know that social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter) is the latest trend they should be capitalizing on to help grow their business. But ask them how to go about initiating a social media campaign and they give me a blank stare. They just don’t know where to start, and it all seems so overwhelming. So if you’re among the confused, or you just don’t have the time but know you should be doing social media, here are some tips and thoughts to consider.

No Time for Social Media? Hire an Expert to Set things Up, Train You, and even Post for You.
First: The Benefits of Social Media

To start, maybe some of you are wondering why they should care about social media. Isn’t it just for young folks? Well, the answer is: no. Many individuals from all generations are getting involved in social media, and many businesses are building a fan base and a following in social media too. (including some of your customers or favorite regional and national brands). I like to think of social media not as a replacement of traditional media, but an alternative method of building brand awareness and communicating with customers, prospects, fans, vendors, partners and the media. Social media is a great place to show your company or your brand’s personality, as well as to share news or information that is important to you, your business or your industry. It can be a great way to connect with reporters and media, as well as to follow what media are publishing. It’s a great way to get feedback from customers about a new product idea or to handle customer service issues. It can also be used as a tool to drive traffic to your blog or website, to position you as an expert, and many more benefits. One of the greatest benefits of social media is that it is a low-cost marketing method (but don’t forget to account for the value of your time).

Next: Start with Why Your Company Should Do Social Media:

I want to reiterate that social media marketing is not going to be the perfect fit for every business or industry. That’s why it’s important to first take the time to investigate whether or not this is the best channel for gaining awareness for your business, communicating with prospects and customers, and sharing your message. So think for a minute about your ideal customers. Do they spend time online? Do they read blogs, watch videos on YouTube, have a personal Facebook page? If so, then social media might be a good fit for your business. If your customers don’t have regular access to a computer or smartphone for visiting social media sites, than it might not be the most important marketing vehicle for your business. One way to discover this is to ask your customers if they use Twitter or Facebook regularly. In addition to determining which social media vehicles are right for you, think too about how you can incorporate existing marketing and advertising into your social media efforts. Could you drive people from a print ad to your Facebook fan page for a special offer? Also think about how you could drive people from your social media accounts to your storefront or website to complete a sale. When you integrate your social media with your overall marketing efforts, you’ll have a greater chance for success.

Next: Setup and Initial Social Media Training
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Let Them Hit It — a World Series message about making money

Friday, November 4th, 2011

ScottManning

The great Zig Ziglar has many sayings that have stuck and become memorable principles for people all over the world. For the professional salesperson and those of us whose lives have to do with the extraction and attraction of money, this one draws the perfect picture as to why so many people do not have the money and success that they could otherwise have…

“Timid Sales People Have Skinny Kids!”

You read that right and let me make the point very clearly –
THERE IS NO PROFIT IN BEING TIMID

Period. End of story.

If I were to describe to you the thing that holds more people back from making
money, any money at all, I’m talking about, it’s that they say one thing but then
their behavior says something different.

The World Series got me to thinking so I’ll use it as an analogy.

I played baseball as a young boy all the way up until High School, kinda wish I
would’ve kept it up, but, wrestling was the only sport whose schedule fit with the
running of my martial arts schools so I had to let baseball go…but I still
remember the fun I had and get why so many people still find it America’s Pastime.

I was a pitcher and shortstop most of the time.

So, we’ll start with Pitching…

Back in the day, not at a pro level, the coaches always said, just throw it in there
and let them hit it. “give em something they can swing at” they’d say. That’s why
you’ve got the other 7 guys behind you…

And in sales, too many people try to trick every prospect they’ve got with some
crazy pitches that usually miss the mark. Instead of just throwing it right down
the middle.

I mean, seriously, if you’re any good at what you do, if you “deliver” and create
relationships, why not give them something they can swing at.

Stop being so paranoid and timid and desperate and trying to trick people into
things and just let them hit the ball.

It’s amazing how many people THINK they are “selling” when really they are
dancing, throwing the ball all over the place – and the batter couldn’t hit the
pitch if they wanted.

This is also related to the good old fashion salesperson problem of

NOT ASKING FOR THE ORDER

NOT GIVING THEM A PITCH THEY CAN HIT

So give them a pitch they can hit and let the 7 fielders behind you (answering their questions and objections, use of testimonials, explaining the benefits for them, etc.) help you make the out.

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