Six Ideas, Five Mistakes, W.I.P. and a Mystery

Friends and colleagues,

I trust this note finds you 14% smarter, 10 pounds lighter and moments away from yet another act of anonymous charity.  No?  Me neither.  But like you, we’re striving.  Here’s a small sampling of the fruits of those labors (for Intuit, Invisalign and Sassy) along with some hard-earned learning.  Oh, and there’s a mystery, so scroll down friend…and you too, colleague.

And please let me know what’s new and what you’re working on.

Ok, seat belts on.

Six Ideas

  1. Delight your customers once or twice a year.  How?  Send them a communication, digital or postal, thanking them for their business, give them something value-added and don’t ask for a damn thing in return. “That’s frighteningly obvious Bower,” you say, but have you tried it?  In an age where the cost to land a new customer is almost 10x the cost to keep one, this seems worth consideration.
  2. Segment your customer base into deciles based on revenue contribution in the last 18 months.  Decrease marketing spend on the top two deciles who love you regardless, and the bottom two who don’t.  Focus your resources on the middle six deciles where marketing can have the biggest impact on whether they become a loyal promoter or disgruntled detractor.  It works, people!
  3. Use iFrames to significantly upgrade the look and feel of your company’s Facebook “storefront.”  Why bother?  Because many businesses are using the generic/base templates and until everyone figures this out and invests accordingly you will stand out, simple as that.
  4. Try multivariate regression analysis.  Sorry, should have issued a propeller-head alert on this one.  But this is a geeky, but not too difficult way to use all the data you collect in your digital marketing efforts to predict – with some certainty, how your customers will behave given different inputs, in different situations.  Have I blown your mind?  Or are you nodding off?…
  5. Mail lower cost touches (i.e., postcards and self mailers) only when you have an offer that literally jumps off the page.  Otherwise, all you’re doing is supporting your prospect’s local landfill.
  6. Own an adjective, or better yet, one.  If you’re the fastest, cheapest, easiest, etc. you need to boldly, clearly, “own” those adjectives. The key is setting up communication hierarchies around that word, laddering all messaging from that simple attribute .  This is one of the best ways to outflank the market leader in your category or maintain market leadership if you’re already the big dog.   Confusing?  Call me.

Five Mistakes

  1. Assuming your prospective customer thinks like you, talks like you, knows what you know.  Unless you’re selling vintage Dungeon & Dragons game sets, he/she most likely does not.  Your marketing communications should reflect that reality.  Do they?
  2. Failing to understand the cost to acquire a customer and their lifetime value to your organization.  If you don’t know this, how can you make responsible decisions on how to spend your advertising and marketing budget?
  3. Falling in love with your own ideas.  Unless you’re Steve Jobs’ spawn, this propensity will get you in trouble.  Let your customers, prospects, transactional data and common sense dictate the best ways forward.  P.S. Do we do this?  Heck, yea, but like I said, we’re trying to get better, smarter.
  4. Not using paid search for the low cost marketing research tool it can be.  Google, Yahoo and Bing are not only great channels to measurably acquire new customers and leads, they’re also an efficient, high velocity way to “dry test” new product concepts, ideas, offers, etc.
  5. Pairing a sauvignon blanc with sirloin.  Whoops, wrong email.


Why this word, like naked, Bieber, free and a number of other gems, brought you here.  Marketing!?

Stay in touch,

P.S. If you don’t want to receive these very occasional dispatches, let me know.  No harm, no foul. (whatever that means)


W.I.P. (Work in Progress):

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