You Can’t Predict When They Will Shop

Are you still trying to blast advertising out there willy-nilly? Without any consistency? Are you only trying to grab the people who need you RIGHT NOW?

That particular advertising strategy is far, far away from the best use of your marketing dollars. Why? Because for most products and services, you can’t predict when someone will need you.

IF YOU’RE IN RETAIL, how long will someone consider buying your product? I mean, how long is the time from when they FIRST consider buying a product that you sell up to the point where they hand over the moolah? It’s called the buying cycle.

For example, do you think someone just goes out to buy a HOUSE on a whim? No, you start thinking about buying or building a house many months or even years before you act on those thoughts.

How about a new mattress? The first time you get out of bed in the morning with a slightly stiff back…you won’t run to the bed store the same day. It’s going to take many more nights of stiffness, pain, then agony, before you decide to shell out some dough for a new mattress. Many months in most cases. Partly because of the price…and mostly because buying a mattress isn’t the most exhilarating purchase in the world. It’s not a fun purchase. So, we put it off for a long time.

The same is true for most products that cost over $100. If a product is $100 or less, it’s easier to say, “I’ll take it!” But for the majority of consumers, more thought, time, and research goes into a purchase over $100.

When we’re happy and satisfied with our home, our mattress, TV, refrigerator, tires, furniture, windows, etc…we will not see direct response advertising – those sale ads, newspaper inserts, print ads, etc. Our brain is wired to disregard them. It has plenty of other things to think about. Our brain does not notice direct response ads until we need what you’re advertising.

Why does a consistently smart, creative branding campaign work best? Because a consistent radio campaign will start being intensely listened to by those consumers on the very first day they consider buying a product. So now, you can talk to them through your advertising for months and months before they decide to buy. You can share with them great reasons to do business with YOU versus someone else.

Who do you think has the upper hand? The business that advertises to someone months and months, week in and week out throughout their ENTIRE BUYING CYCLE? Or the one that advertises only periodically trying to attract people the day or two before they decide to buy?

Short term spurts of advertising trying to snag the low-hanging fruit does not lend itself a helping hand towards strong, consistent growth.

It’s the people who aren’t quite “ripe” that you want to start wooing. What’s the definition of woo? To seek the favor, affection, or love of. I would even add in there…SEDUCE.

Kind of reminds me of when I met my wife. Did I ask her to marry me on the first day we met? No. I started a process. The process of wooing. Which brings me to another point. Marketing your business is a process…not an event.

When something is REALLY worth going after, you need to be patient and start a smart process that takes many things into account. What’s a new customer worth to you? Is it worth taking extra care in attracting profitable, new customers that will love how you treat them better than someone else down the street? I would think so. So, don’t yell at them, hoping to get their business with inconsistent and unemotional advertising. Woo them. Start the process.

I’d love to help you with that. When radio advertising is done right… there’s nothing better to attract your next favorite new customer.

Remember… you can’t predict when they’ll shop, so you might as well talk to them long before that… which will take your competitors almost completely out of the picture. Wouldn’t that be cool?

Have a great day!

Duane Christensen

Sioux Falls Radio Advertising blog

I’m a marketing guy, ad writer, and a Sioux Falls business grower. I’m on a mission to help local businesses get more from their advertising bucks. I also wrote a  a no-nonsense book about how to take a bigger slice of market share with better advertising. It’s called “Take a Bigger Slice”.