Balancing Guerrilla Style and Substance
Which matters most in your marketing – style or substance? The ideal answer is both. With its style, it conveys your identity and captures the attention of your targeted audience. With its substance, it makes essential points and motivates that audience.
Well-informed Guerrilla marketers see to it that both their style and substance are obvious but that their product or service always has the starring role in their marketing. You don’t want the marketing that everyone is talking about, but they have no idea who the company or product is. Equally, you can have great brand or product recall but little or no sales impact because your marketing entertains but doesn’t motivate.
Guerrilla marketers understand that entertainment takes a back seat to selling and substance. Think of your marketing from your sales people’s perspective – you wouldn’t ask them to start their presentation with a song and dance routine. You want them to succeed because of the style they use to provide substance, not because of the style itself.
The overriding concept in your marketing should be to present substance and do it with style. That means the emphasis is on the substance. The readers, viewers and website visitors remember the substance. Checks get written, credit cards used, and orders placed because of the substance.
"Creative" marketing experts are often trained to create a gorgeous picture, a rhyming headline, or a flashing website when they should be trying to create an eye-popping upswing in your sales curve. That sales curve is your responsibility and your key to business success.
Remember, if "creative" ideas cost you more than they earn for you, something is wrong with the equation. The equation should read, "creativity equals profits." In Hollywood terms, your seeking to create a blockbuster movie, not an award-winning movie that loses money because hardly anyone was willing to pay to see it.
Substance consists of both facts and opinions. It communicates both features and benefits. It is as specific as it can possibly be. And it effectively utilizes both words and pictures.
Style makes marketing enjoyable to read and hear. Or at least it makes marketing digestible.
Given the relationship of substance to style, put your money on substance every time. Most businesses should not even think of selling with style at the expense of substance. Many have tried. Most have failed. Your task: stress your substance but do it with style.
Be aware that there are exceptions to this rule. If, for example, the very essence of your product or service is its style, you may want to convey that style as its primary benefit. In that instance, the style is the product or services’ substance.
Remember, your goals because your competitor, that’s selling to your customers and attracting your prospects, has profits on their mind.
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