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SCATTERGUN APPROACH
by: Bob Osgoodby

A scattergun, or more commonly referred to as a shotgun, fires many pellets into the air hoping that one or two might hit the target. Most however miss and fall harmlessly to the ground.

The scattergun approach in advertising, is when you don't try to isolate your potential customers from the general population.  While you may find a few people who will buy your product, the majority of your advertising dollar is being wasted on people who aren't a potential customer.

When describing a particularly good salesperson, it is often said they could sell Ice Boxes to Eskimos. Now for those who may not know what an "Ice Box" is, think of your refrigerator - the kind you plug in to keep your food cold. Eskimos, of course live in a very cold climate, and would have little use for a box to keep ice in.

Some salespeople however have an extraordinary talent, and can
convince someone they absolutely need something, even if they don't. Now, everyone is not that type of a super salesperson, and you may have to be a little more realistic.

Are you trying to sell "Ice Boxes" to Eskimos? You may think that you're not, but if your ads aren't reaching your target market, then you might just as well be. There's no way you'll succeed in your business on the Internet, unless you're selling to your target market!

So what is a target market? Simply put, it consists of people who may have an interest in what you are trying to sell.  Finding prospects for your target market, whatever it may be, is not that difficult. A quick way is to do a search on the web using keywords that would relate to your target market. This is an ideal place to attempt to develop mutually beneficial marketing agreements.

Now, don't get me wrong - I am not suggesting you find these web
sites and send them unsolicited commercial email - in other words "Sp^m". There is software available that will find these sites by the thousand, and you must resist that impulse. If however, you send a personal email, suggesting a symbiotic relationship, few people would take umbrage. The ideal candidate you might find is not in a competing business, but in an allied business.

Ezines, by any account, are the absolute best way to isolate a target market. Most of them sell advertising space, and for a small investment, you can get your message out to exactly the potential clientele you are seeking. Find Ezines, which are of interest to your target market and take out an ad.

Another powerful method is to write an article that would be of interest to the publisher of an Ezine. Most are hungry for new and fresh content, and will publish your articles with your "authors credits" at the end.

You have a much better chance of being published, if you try to set up an exclusive arrangement with the publisher. Now this doesn't mean that they are the only one you send the article to.  You may send them your article first, giving them a chance to publish it, before you send it to others.

If you get to be known as an expert in your field, whatever it may be, you will find your potential clients approaching you.  Once they do approach you, keep a file of their names and email addresses. First send them a thank you note. You can follow that up later with your actual sales messages. Because you have established a relationship, they will be more inclined to read what you say.

Notice that you should include their name in the information you capture as well as the email address. Now when you send them your offers, you can start it off with their first name - like "Dear Bob". Most people will take the time to read something that is that personal, as it immediately separates your email from all the other junk they receive.

If you don't use the "Scatter Gun" approach, you won't have to try to sell that proverbial "Ice Box". You have identified your target market, and your advertising dollars should generate the desired result.

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Did you know that subscribers to Bob Osgoodby's Free Ezine the "Tip of the Day" get a Free Ad for their Business at his Web Site? Great Business and Computer Tips - Monday thru Friday.  Instructions on how to place your ad are in the Newsletter.
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