Your Intuition: It Will Lead You in the Right Direction
June 30, 2022
By Gulie Moore
Some of the best salespeople I have ever met were the Girl Scouts in my college town. With minimal, local, and sometimes hand-drawn advertising, they would set up their cookie stand on weekend evenings and be out of stock by bedtime. They had the total package – a quality product, a salesforce that stood out, and a location that saw nonstop traffic from students who were tired of dining hall food. Pretty clever, right? A few years after this started, a cookie franchise thought the same and set up shop down the street. They, too, had a quality product, a storefront that stood out, and a location that saw the same traffic. But, despite the advertising campaigns and promotions they ran, the buzz around the store died out quickly. What’s the difference? The Girl Scouts prioritized context over content.
This isn’t to say that your content isn’t important. In the digital age, it is easier than ever to collect and utilize data that will put your brand in front of a receptive audience – which can still be effective! The problem is that in the digital age, consumers are also more market-savvy than ever and studies are showing that they resent advertising they perceive as inauthentic or intrusive. So while a traditional approach could pay off in the short term, this resentment can also prevent consumers from connecting with your brand – limiting the growth of your loyal customer base.
Informed, Intuitive Marketing (I2M) is a data-based alternative to traditional marketing geared towards learning how your customers think, act, and respond so that you can align your marketing intent with your client’s expectations and associations. In other words, I2M focuses on building long-term relationships with consumers rather than relying on intrusive advertising or covert persuasion. This is why the Girl Scouts were so successful – they earned attention by connecting with their customer base, advertising in intuitive spaces, and presenting themselves and their product authentically. The franchise, however, demanded attention with intrusive social media ads or by luring customers in with promotions or samples that quickly disappeared.
Organizations of all sizes can benefit immensely from this strategy. Start by doing an honest look at how you perceive and present your service or product, then compare it to how your customers perceive and engage with it. How do these line up? Leaning into areas of your identity that may resonate internally but not with your customers can come across as inauthentic.
Second, consider how you communicate with your clients. You can grow your loyal-customer base even before their first transaction by giving consumers opportunities to connect with you without any expectation of them making a purchase. This can be done through something as simple as offering facility tours, volunteering as an organization, or highlighting your employees and their achievements on social media.
Finally, prioritize advertising spaces where consumers are receptive to your message rather than susceptible to your marketing. Remember, I2M is about earning attention, not demanding it. And when in doubt on how to connect with your customers, trust your intuition. Like Jewel (and Gulie) said, it will lead you in the right direction.
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