As I first mentioned on Tuesday, marketing only has three dials you can turn.
My partner Roy invented and first introduced me to them many years ago as part of what he called The Advertising Performance Equation. He published this equation (really more a statement of relation) in his book Secret Formulas of The Wizard of Ads – which became both a Best Seller and The Wall Street Journal’s Business Book of the Year.
In other words, you might wanna pay attention.
Three knobs. Three dials over which you have control. That’s it. (We’re not talking about operations, overhead or cost of goods. We’re talking about marketing.)
Share of Voice (SoV): What percentage of all advertising done in your business category in your market is yours? How much do you dip into your pocket and spend in comparison to your competition?
Is your problem that people don’t know about you?
Dial up your share of voice. Relentlessly reach as many people as you can afford to reach with sufficient repetition so that people think of you and like you when a need for your product or service arises.
Impact Quotient (IQ): How memorable, persuasive and sticky are your ads compared to those of your competitors? Notice, I didn’t ask how creative, funny and professional your ads were? We’re not trying to win awards. We’re trying to grow your business.
Is your problem that people think they know about you, but they really don’t?
Dial up your impact quotient. Hire a killer strategist and ad writer to help you find and address the felt needs of consumers in your market. Answer questions that they’re asking.
Personal Experience Factor (PEF): How well do you delight and dazzle your customers compare to your competitors? Are you employees rockstars? Is your parking lot spotless? Do you use social media as a tool to listen, reward and engage your customers? Have you raised the anticipated price of doing business with you by building value into everything that comes into contact with your customers?
Is your problem that (uh oh) people do know about you?
Remember, advertising only accelerates the inevitable. A good advertising campaign will put a bad business out of business faster. Oftentimes, the best thing a struggling company can do with its ad budget is put it into sales training and soap.
If you feel some or all of your marketing budget is being wasted, take a close look at these three controls.
If you need a second opinion, I might know some people who can help.