NASHVILLE MARKETING BLOG: Insights on strategic branding, marketing management, general business and Nashville marketing topics. By Monica Powers, Vanderbilt MBA and marketing consultant in Nashville, TN.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Blind Dating Your Customers

Marketing is like inviting someone out on a blind date -- you think of the right things to say, create certain expectations (some companies call this a "brand message"), and score the first face-to-face with a prospective customer. Here's your one chance to go big, state your case, close the deal. If you promise and fail to deliver--your profile says Tough Biker Guy and you're a skinny surfer dude--your chances for a second date, a repeat purchase, are pretty much shot.

Delivering on your promise is important. So is the consistency of your message. Don't give your customer apples when she's expecting to find oranges. And stay true to a singular statement about who you are, no matter where you are.


Anonymous argos said...

I feel "blind date" is a fairly good metaphor, although you'd think companies who have been courting us for a while would move on to the "engaged" part of the relationship. After all, who wouldn't want to be "married" to their customers.

As the founder of a small start-up, just days from primary launch, I do feel that exileration of newness and the possibility/hope of nurturing long-term relationships.

Putting oneself out there with that singular authentic message is very exciting, although I often feel as though I am floating out at sea, with just a barely discernable view of a safe harbor.

With R&D behind me, seems "courting" is now my full time job. That fear of rejection is still a very real and human thing. Funny how Guy Kawasaki metions "sucking up" as a benefitial attribute of marketing.

I wonder if doing so leads one away from that singular message. When we go out on a blind date, do we do a little "sucking up?"

May 06, 2006 6:38 AM

Blogger Monica Powers said...

That's a great analogy -- not only do you have to make a good first impression, but then keep courting your customers day after day, since you're in it, hopefully, for the long haul. I imagine that's one of the toughest things about being in business for yourself.

I'd love to hear how your new venture goes and how you go about developing long-term relationships. Do you blog about your company?

May 06, 2006 12:09 PM

Anonymous argos said...

No. Not yet anyway. I would consider it after some momentum but, I am still in the "ignore everyone" phase.

I LOVE business blogs though, however, I found yours through a sartorial connection.

Building business relationships up and down is still the very same as intimate relationships - always considering the needs of another above your own, while staying true to ones self. It couldn't be more exciting and...challenging.

May 08, 2006 7:02 AM


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