Back when I was a young fella I used to be regularly shipped off to my granny’s farm in Clare for the weekend, usually once a month or so.
While for the most part those bucolic breaks were a picture postcard of blissfully idyllic youth, they did come at a high cost: backbreaking farm work.
And for a soft city boy like myself it didn’t come much worse than cow milking.
Back in those days milking machines weren’t as common as they are now, and the whole thing had to be done by hand.
Yep, manual teat squeezing.
Strangely enough, the thing I remember most vividly wasn’t the danger of being kicked up the arse by a rambunctious cow or the nauseating stink of a milking parlour, but the dodgy milking stools that were perpetually broken.
There was always a wobbly leg that kept making you fall over at a crucial, teat pulling moment.
A bogey upright that made an already crappy task all the more difficult.
Imagine how productive we could have been if someone only took the time to go and buy a couple of stools that didn’t keep falling over the whole time?
Like a lot of things in life, it’s usually small little details like that if they were to be taken care of, would see a monumental improvement in results.
Similar to the way most businesses market themselves.
So whenever I look at a business’s marketing efforts I hark back to those hazy summer days down in Clare trying to milk cows on a wobbly stool.
Yesterday you may recall I spoke about “The Three M’s” of marketing, namely “Market”, “Message” and “Medium”.
The three “legs” of the stool of successful marketing.
Without getting these three right, you’ll always be trying to milk that cow with one leg of the stool missing.
You might have some success, but more often than not your results will be little more than a squirt from a disinterested cow teat rather than a full on flood from an exploding udder.
Lets rap about your market first. It isn’t everyone, nor should you want it to be. Do Rolls Royce try and sell their cars to every Tom, Dick and Harry out there? No, they target only those of a certain level of affluence.
Your message. Once you’ve identified just who is your market, your message must be appropriate to it. Is it written in such a way that will speak to your market’s true needs? Their hopes and fears? What keeps them awake at night?
It’s pointless to go to the trouble of determining the best market for your financial product is 30—40 y.o. married women with 2 children if you aren’t able to get your message across in a way which resonates with that particular demographic.
And then there’s the medium. Are you trying to market hearing aid solutions to OAP’s on Facebook? Or maybe using radio advertising to sell a niche piece of industrial equipment? Your medium must consist of a sufficient number of your target audience in order for it for to produce a worthwhile return on investment, otherwise it will fail.
Most marketing will get at least one of the three wrong. Get all three right and you put yourself ahead of 99% of the pack.
Really, there’s no greater mystery to it than what I’ve outlined above.
Keith “The Three M’s” Commins
PS: Of course just having “The Three M’s” right isn’t going to necessarily be enough to ensure your product or service does well. There are going to be other considerations, like whether your product is actually any good or not.
But the fundamentals of any successful marketing will always hinge on those “Three M’s”. The rest is up to you…