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Mirror Marketing

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Mirror Marketing

  1. 1. Business901 Product Marketing Lean Marketing Mirror Marketing By Business901
  2. 2. Business901 Product Marketing Lean Marketing Does your marketing mirror your customers buying process? 1. Do you understand your customers buying process? 2. Does your marketing mirror that process? 3. If you did, would your marketing be more effective? 4. Do you have specific marketing messages that your customer receives at critical points in that process?
  3. 3. Business901 Product Marketing Lean Marketing I always wondered, even before I started applying Lean Marketing Principles , why the marketing process rarely considered what stages a customer went through to buy their product or service. Customer usually have a fairly regimented way they conduct business and a very structured purchasing pattern. Most will even tell you and the fact of the matter is, that your sales people already probably know it. Document that process, even create a sales funnel or hour glass on this process. As you go through it step by step, pick critical points and review what you type of marketing materials you would like them to have in their hand as they reach those points. Maybe even think about reaching them just right before they reach a critical point. If you do this, it will create an entire different way of looking at your marketing. From the customers point of view! Not that novel is it?
  4. 4. Business901 Product Marketing Lean Marketing This is a decision tree that I acquired from the Free Management Library many years ago. I recommend them as a very viable source of information. The first requirement we had was to formulate the decision process of the customer. Many will not have this formal of a process but it is a process and a documented one, so lets start with this Ten-step approach.. 1. Identify the key facts. 2. Identify and analyze the major stakeholders. 3. Identify the underlying driving factors. 4. Identify/Prioritize operating values and ethical principles. 5. Decide who should be involved in making the decision. 6. Determine & evaluate all viable alternatives. 7. Test preferred alternative with a worst-case scenario 8. Add a preventive component 9. Decide and build a short and long term action plan 10. Use decision making checklist. Now, the key to this is putting your product and service next to these steps and see if you could influence any of these decision with good marketing materials. Can you?
  5. 5. Business901 Product Marketing Lean Marketing The next requirement from a Lean Marketing perspective or any other perspective for that matter is to understand the meaning and to define it in a useable manner. Listed are just a few of the perceptions outlined: 1. The perceived seriousness may determine the call to action. 2. Who values what outcomes. They may differ through out the company. 3. Understand the underlying symptoms, much like a doctor would. 4. What are the up-front parameters, your customers need met. Good solutions can often get thrown out early because they are perceived to costly or to complicated in the early stages. 5. You must determine that your solution satisfies the needs of key decision makers. Maybe as importantly, know who needs you may not satisfy. 6. What are the possible outcomes with your product or services and with others. Is yours really the best solution? 7. What is the worst possible scenario with your product. It may be better than the best possible outcomes product. People fear the worst. 8. Preventing the worst case may win the battle. 9. Even at that provide a parachute and describe it. 10. When the plan is created for purchasing, are you part of it? Can you help create it. Can you write the plan and spec your product in?
  6. 6. Business901 Product Marketing Lean Marketing This step. I would relate to creating a Future State Value Stream. You are now going to start thinking about the marketing materials to use or create for this process. 1. The more your product/service has demonstrate that it is the best solution or you are perceived as the expert in the area will determine how quickly you flow through the process. 2. Do you have proof that your product will provide the desired outcomes. 3. What will change in your customers life if you provide this? Or what improvement in his processes will happen. 4. How relevant is your product to the desired outcomes. Does he understand it to be an effective and easy solution? 5. List the decision makers or in a general sense the typical decision makers. Review how these people are used to receiving and the type of material they would want. More importantly is thee different DM involved that need different material than others. This is not the time to hand out the tri-fold.
  7. 7. Business901 Product Marketing Lean Marketing 5. Understand you competition and all the alternatives that may be available. If you are not the strongest outcome be realistic, you can still get the job. 6. Develop worse case scenarios not only for product/service but others. Maybe, if you can provide the best evaluation or test of the product that may be better than the perceived value. 7. There is a chance for something bad to happen on any purchase. What preemptive steps can you provide your customer to minimize his risk. What provisions are already build into the product/service that will minimize the risk. 8. Your customer has a strategy to make the best purchase. Do you have a better strategy in place? Take his purchasing criteria and match your marketing with answers. 9. Create your checklist and rate your strong areas and your weak areas. Rate your self against your competition even. You are more than likely not the best in every category. It is important to know that so that you can hit a few high notes when the opportunity is there.
  8. 8. Business901 Product Marketing Lean Marketing Effective marketing must first start with the understanding the customer’s buying process and putting a proactive plan and process in place to meet those criteria. We have went through a ten step process the customer may take to reach a decision to purchase. We have analyzed all the steps; typical stakeholders involved, comparison with competitors, worse case scenarios, planned alternatives, etc. Now, is the time for action. Since the buying process is defined by the customer, it should not seem anymore that it is subjective, it is pretty objective at this point. Look at each of the individual steps and determine a solid reaction to that process. For instance, one of the features of your product may be testing the solution in their environment. Having a case study, testimonial in place may accelerate the solution or even prevent a full test having to be conducted. Having a comparison sheet or an unbiased guide for them to use during the selection process. A good example of that is some webinar providers have a tool to determine the travel savings by attending the webinar. Having an excel spreadsheet for the customer’s process may work perfectly.
  9. 9. Business901 Product Marketing Lean Marketing There numerous ideas and suggestions that can be made but the secret is having the information as part of a process. That way you can use your time on improving the process and with the customer. When you dash off to create just the right thing, how many times does it not quite fulfill the bill or you find out that the 12-page document had something that just did not quite work right. Even more common, it takes you down a path that you had to create more material for the remaining steps. Marketing is not an event - it is a process, and a mindset. A consistently high quality marketing effort cannot be produced by a faulty process. You must have products or services in place to meet your customer expectations. Look at each step and mirror your customer’s process and be able to pick your marketing reaction as quickly as you could turn a faucet. Wash your hands of a sloppy process and give the customer exactly what he wants, when he wants it and how he wants it. Balancing the process will soon become as easy as adjusting the water for the right temperature. But to do so, make sure you look in the mirror each step of the way.
  10. 10. Joseph T. Dager Lean Six Sigma Black Belt Ph: 260-438-0411 Fax: 260-818-2022 Email: jtdager@business901.com Web/Blog: http://www.business901.com Twitter: @business901 Increase Throughput – (Decrease) Expenses = Increase Revenue – Learn HOW! Act Now!

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