The 3 Things You Must Understand Before Any Marketing Campaign

Updated: January 10, 2010

Your Customers: Who are they? What are their core needs, objectives, pain points? What gest them fired up in the morning, and what keeps them up at night? What (and who) influences and motivates them?

The more you understand your customer, the better your marketing will be. And frankly, if you don't know your customer well, I'm not sure how you can put a successful product into play in the first place.

Don't feel like you know enough about your customers? Just ask! Take a list of customers and call them. Don't pitch them, but ask them about their business, their needs, their pain. You'll learn a ton.

Your front-line employees are hearing from customers every day. Your customer service reps, sales team, account managers - they all are a wealth of knowledge about your customers if you're willing to ask and listen.

Your Products: What you're selling needs to closely align with the needs of your customers. It needs to clearly fill a need, solve a problem, or provide a benefit that can be easily communicated.

Too many companies describe their products to customers by explaining features. That's a mistake, especially at the front of the conversation and sales cycle. To gain the customer's attention, you have to speak in terms of benefits. Don't talk about the how and what. Address the why.

And when building and updating products, ensure that the customer's voice is closeby throughout. Product plans and specs are often build directly from customer feedback, but that customer closeness can get lost as decisions are made to get the product launched. Don't that happen on your watch.

Your Objectives: Even if you understand your customers well, and have a product that directly aligns with the customer's needs, there are a million ways to take that message to market. There are countless customer segments, marketing channels, and likely several different product and/or service lines on which you can focus.

Which are most important? What combination will most directly lead to success for your organization this year? If you've defined goals for the organization, and broken that down to a handful of focus areas or "bets" in the marketplace, that gives your marketing the direction it needs to focus on the right customers, the right channels, and the right products.

Featured Research
  • 10 Contact Center Myths Busted

    For most forward-thinking companies, the use of contact center software is on the rise. That said, in spite of contact center software’s sudden rise in popularity, a number of myths have begun to take shape. more

  • Go Mobile and Increase Employee Productivity

    The Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) tech trends now allow people to work whenever, wherever, and however they want—mobility makes it happen. more

  • [Infographic] How to Select a Phone System in 10 Steps

    Choosing the perfect phone system for your business is no small task …. Depending on the size of your company, the industry in which you work, and the specific needs your phone system will be required to meet, any number of solutions could get the job done. more

  • SMB CRM Providers Comparison Guide

    A good SMB CRM system can be an incredibly valuable asset for your business. As more businesses recognize this value, the amount of SMB CRM vendors is expanding quickly. Navigating the pricing plans, features, and service terms of all these can be a decision-making nightmare. more

  • 2017 Business VoIP Cost Guide

    Reducing expenses is one of the main reasons that businesses switch from traditional office phone systems to VoIP technology. But many people rush this decision and end up spending more than they need to. The costs of implementing a new VoIP system can increase quickly, especially if you don’t strategically plan for it ahead of time. more