When I’m not marketing for my small business clients, one of my guilty pleasures is watching television, including ABC’s reality shows The Bachelor and The Bachelorette. What I have noticed since watching several seasons of the show is that some contestants are better than others at playing this reality dating game. Some of them are not very well-skilled at getting noticed, and they hardly appear on the show before getting rejected. Still others succeed in getting attention, but not of the positive variety. But the contestants who get noticed and receive the final rose have some things in common. What does all of this mean to a business audience, you ask? When the competition for your client’s affection is fierce, here are some marketing tips to get your customers to “pick you” from a crowd:
1: Make yourself look attractive: This one may seem like a “duh” but many businesses lose that important first impression by having an outdated logo, website, marketing materials or social media pages. Make sure your brand is up to par by giving it a refresh before going after new clients. Don’t forget about your professional look when doing personal networking, too, and you may just get a first impression rose.
2: Don’t always talk about yourself. As we know (and often forget), people like to talk about themselves. This is true whether we’re talking about a dating or networking scenario. On The Bachelor, you can tell which contestants truly love hearing themselves talk, and this usually results in an eye roll or two from the would-be suitor. When marketing to prospective customers, engage them with information that would stir up their emotions or feelings, or relate to their common interests or hobbies. If your prospect likes to golf, sponsor a golf outing. If they’re a health nut, appeal to their need to stay that way in your marketing copy. Focus on their problems, frustrations or end goals instead of going on and on about your features and specifications in your advertising copy.
3: Notice your competition (but don’t dwell on them). Take note of the major players in your category, and use this information to your advantage. Check out their websites, their social media profiles, blogs and notice how and in which ways they’re promoting themselves. Do not, however, try to take down your competition by bad-mouthing them to your prospective customer. This almost always blows up in your face (as it does in nearly every Bachelor or Bachelorette show).
4: Be yourself. Many of the Bachelor and Bachelorette contestants get accused of being “fake” and presenting a different persona in front of their prospective mate than they do in real life. The same is true in business. Don’t ever try to be something you’re not. Your prospect will see right through you. Focus instead on highlighting your best qualities. Don’t know? Ask a customer to tell you why they decided to purchase from you or use your service. In the marketing world, this can be used as your USP, or unique selling proposition.
5: If it’s not a good fit, move on. There’s no sense in crying over a relationship that wasn’t meant to be. Be persistent with your prospects, but don’t be a stalker. Follow up appropriately and timely but don’t overdo it. If you didn’t get the rose this time, remember that there are other fish (prospects) in the sea. Find a new one to woo and move on with your life.
As you can see, the business world has a lot in common with the dating world. If your business is perpetually missing out on that rose, put into practice some of these marketing tips from The Bachelor world, and see if you don’t get more prospects to notice you.