The Greatest Marketing Story Ever Told | #MyFridayStory No. 168

The Greatest Marketing Story Ever Told | #MyFridayStory No. 168

I’m a sucker for anything to do with marketing.

From the first time I encountered the discipline of marketing, I was hooked. The concept excited and enthralled me. Fundamentally, marketing is about telling a story in such a compelling way that people can easily remember and share it.

One of the coolest aspects of formal training is the use of real-life case studies. Students are tasked with investigating a challenge a well-known brand is facing. They must offer a solution to overcome their marketing dilemma.

I completed a marketing certificate, several management programs, and a post-graduate diploma in marketing. They all used the case-study method. My Snap-on-Daughter completed a 3-year degree in marketing. We had in-depth discussions about all her case studies. Marketing books by the latest gurus are a staple in my reading and listening diet. Without exception, they use case studies of actual brands to illustrate a solution.

Most people have seen a campaign of competing brands trying to gain attention. Apple and Microsoft have had epic advertising battles since the 80s. The cola wars between Coca-Cola and Pepsi has been raging since the 70s.

Advertising costs make up a large part of marketing spend, and with good reason. For many years, media such as television, radio and print made paid advertising a sure bet. The age of the internet brought more opportunities for spreading your story far and wide. Social media has taken engagement to levels never imagined.

If we include all other forms of messaging from email campaigns, blogs, newsletters etc. our brain can’t cope with all the ‘noise.’ So, it filters out the messages it deems less important.

But, none of these methods offers any guarantee for success.

Of all the ways to spread a story, personal selling is by far the most effective and reliable—Word of mouth. Think of how often you ask a friend to recommend a restaurant or read the reviews for an upcoming movie. No-one wants to be the one ‘caught’ making a wrong decision; asking for advice lessens the risk.

One of the methods of personal selling I use is the Counselor Salesperson process. It relates to overcoming 4 potential objections throughout the buying cycle:

  1. No Trust – all relationships start with a lack of trust. Only time and consistent behaviour build trust.
  2. No Need – no interest in your solution. Uncovering their needs is paramount to know what product or service to offer.
  3. No Help – your solution or offer does not solve their needs. Show how your solution addresses their tangible and intangible needs.
  4. No Hurry – their need is not urgent and can wait. People often delay deciding, even if it’s not in their best interest. Assisting them to act is how you close the sale.

When a story resonates with enough people and they remember, share, and act on it, we call that a success story.

Arguably, the greatest marketing story ever told started over 2000 years ago.

With no marketing budget, no television and no internet, a dozen or so keen marketers got together to tell a beautiful story. The story unfolded in front of their eyes and they offered an eye-witness account of the events. The marketing strategy was brilliant in its simplicity:

Share the story.

Starting with only a handful of ‘brand evangelists,’ the story has spread across the world. The Book version has sold millions of copies. The central message of love has touched many lives.

Today, many around the world celebrate an integral theme of the story – the birth of Jesus. To all Christians, I wish you and your family God’s abundant love and peace and please continue sharing the story.

Merry Christmas!

As always, thanks for reading 🙏

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