The following is a true story. It’s hard to believe, but it IS a very true story, and it really points up the value of promotion. Only the lady’s name has been changed. Everything else occurred just like I’ve stated here…
Several years ago, a lady friend of mine who was a very good business consultant was invited to give a talk in a city somewhere in Latin America.
Sorry, I honestly don’t recall in which country or city this took place, other than it was in Latin America. Was it Columbia? Guatemala? Costa Rica? Or??
I don’t remember, but this event did occur just as I describe…
My friend, who we will refer to as “Jane” flew down to this city, arrived at the offices of the company who had invited her and sponsored the event, and was greeted by a young woman who promptly burst into tears.
Jane was taken completely by surprise at this and thought something terrible must have happened. After a couple of minutes the young lady calmed down and regained her composure. Jane then asked her what was wrong.
Are you ready?…
The woman proceeded to tell Jane that they had sent out promotion to 1,000 businesses in the area promoting the event that Jane was scheduled to speak at as the keynote speaker.
Jane knew another shoe was going to drop and thought maybe it was something like, “the promotion never got sent” or something like that. Instead, the young woman said … “Oh, Jane, I am soooo sorry. Only 800 companies have said they will be attending!” And she burst into tears again.
Needless to say, Jane was completely and utterly flabbergasted!! An 80% response rate??!! And the young woman thought this was terrible??
To make a long story short, the event was PACKED with attendees. It was hugely successful. I don’t know about you, but if that had been me instead of “Jane,” I would have wondered if I had entered a parallel universe or something!
Now I know this is probably pretty hard to believe. But you must remember… in North America, we live in an extremely saturated environment when it comes to advertising and promotion.
The reason this event took place the way it did was obviously because the country/city where it took place had not yet been saturated with billboards, signs, direct mail pieces, advertising, broadcast commercials, fliers, what-have-you. It was not anywhere near being saturated.
Plus, the businesses attending the event were obviously interested in learning some business management skills from a very successful business consultant. And you can bet that Jane spent some time addressing the subject of PROMOTION during her presentation.
Business owners, managers or executives, to be successful, really have to be on the ball when it comes to getting their businesses well known and generating enough qualified leads and inquiries to be flourishing and profitable. Especially, in North America, but also in many other countries and cities, too.
Think of a wagon wheel with a center hub and spokes going out to the rim. Then look over all your marketing and promotional activities. Imagine the wheel’s hub is your business, and the spokes are your marketing and promotional channels, avenues or methods.
How many “spokes” does your wheel have? It probably needs at least four to hold up and not collapse.
Some obvious spokes could be the internet (website, social media, pay-per-click ads…), direct mail (postcards?), an actively managed referral program, networking, a billboard or two for a local company, email campaign, print advertising, TV or radio commercials, etc.
And in order to stand out from the crowd in this very saturated North American market, you or the people or companies you employ to handle your marketing and promotion need to know how to build your brand, how to position your company, how to create website pages with informative, useful content for your target market, how to properly optimize your website for the search engines, how to create copy or ads that generate good response rates, yada, yada.
Look at it this way, your SUCCESSFUL competitors are likely doing some of these things very effectively.
Which ones would work best for your company or enterprise? Do you know?
Moral of this story: never quit promoting. Never take promotion for granted.
To be successful you have to find ways in which your company can afford to promote effectively on an ongoing basis. Effective marketing and promotional activities that generate qualified leads and inquiries are the lifeblood of most companies.
Otherwise, a company can become anemic instead of vital and alive!
Written by Bob Nelson
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