Is your company message on target?

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This week’s blog post was influenced by a couple of different resources and both came from two different LinkedIn discussions. The first came from a link that Michael Cannon provided from some research that his Silver Bullet Group did called “Customer Communication Effectiveness Index” ( The second came from a link in a discussion that I currently have running in the Sales / Marketing Executives (CSO/CMO) group called “If over 50% of your marketing and sales communications aren’t relevant to your customers and 70% isn’t relevant to your sales team, then who is to blame?” The link in that discussion was to an article written in Forbes by Patrick Hull called “It’s Not About You: The Great Marketing Mistake”.

Allow me to first pull from Michael’s Research Index:

  • “The greatest inhibitor to sales effectiveness is the inability to communicate a value message.” SiriusDecisions, 2013
  • “When prospects do see your messaging, they only see 10 percent as relevant to them.” Corporate Executive Board (CEB) & IDC 2012
  • “According to sales management, the salesperson’s ability or inability to communicate value messages is the biggest inhibitor keeping salespeople from achieving quota.” PMM Survey, SiriusDecisions 2012

In the next article, Patrick Hull writes, “A major mistake that many entrepreneurs make – and don’t realize – is marketing themselves, not their business. They forget that a business is not them; it’s about serving their customers. It’s not about who you are or what you do – it’s about your clients, customers, and potential buyers. This is what effective marketing is all about. It’s understanding your customers’ dreams, desires, nightmares, or problems and then giving them a solution.”

OK, now let’s tie both of these together and see how the research that the Silver Bullet Group provides that there is clearly a problem with creating and communicating quality, value messages.  The second part of this relates to the fact that, as stated in the research above, only 10% of the messaging seems to relate to the prospect. So, many companies tend to create messages that talk about their company, products, success, etc. and not about what is pertinent or relevant to the prospect.

I have a Credo that I created that is posted on the wall above my desk that reads:

‘Think the way your Customer Thinks

Look at yourself through your Customers’ Eyes

Listen to yourself through your Customers’ Ears

Speak in terms of what matters to them rather than what matters to you

Help them solve problems and realize value, rather than buy products

Remember, it’s all about Them not about You!”

My questions for you are:

  1. Do you know whether your customer messages are on target?
  2. How do you know?
  3. Are your salespeople able to consistently and effectively deliver those messages?

If you don’t know the answer to these questions, then perhaps you need to implement some type of feedback mechanism in order to know that.

Also, if your company is having problems creating a message that resonates
with your customers, then perhaps your focus isn’t as much on them as it is on your company.

At least that’s the way I see it, what say you?

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