The cream doesn’t always rise to the top – Sometimes it gets stuck in the middle
I’ve been saying for weeks, months, years that your content needs to be TRM* — Timely, Relevant and Meaningful. You’d think this message would be self-explanatory, but a review is in order.
Timely: In a world where we are consistently bombarded with marketing messages – some sources estimate the average American gets hit with up to 3,000 a day – It’s more important than ever to deliver the right message to the right person at the right time. What is the right time? It can vary from a time of day when messages are more likely to be received to which message is most appropriate, based on where each buyer is in their journey to becoming a customer.
Meaningful: If marketing messages don’t resonate with potential buyers, they will ignore them or seek advice elsewhere. That’s why we are big proponents of educational content.
Relevant: Relevance is a combination of the above two. Closely connected (read: meaningful), appropriate to the matter at hand (read: timely). So, perhaps it’s time to omit this from my plea. However, last week the meaning of relevant was made wholly new to me.
Stuck between a rock and a cookie
Photo courtesy of Consumer Reports 2015©
It began innocently enough with a trip to the mailbox. Inside was the November edition of Consumer Reports. An article addressed shrinking food packaging and portion sizes with prices that remain the same or increased. I don’t know about you, but for me, paying the same price (or more) and getting less leaves me feeling duped, ripped off or both, in addition to lighter in the wallet.
A related article focused on Oreo cookies. An infographic (above) highlighted the numerous variety of Oreos available, with their corresponding price per pound. FYI: Double Stuf Oreos cost less per pound than Originals. The accompanying article discussed the pricing variance and the history of the brand.
When asked, a senior director at Oreo stated “…we know that consumers enjoy variety when it comes to snacking, so we continuously deliver surprising new tastes and twists on the classic cookie. This helps Oreo stay relevant.”
Relevant? Really? Oreos?
The Superbowl tweet, You can still dunk in the dark was brilliant for its timeliness. However, this senior director doesn’t understand the meaning of the word relevant.
In 1912 when Oreos hit the market they may have been relevant. But, today? I don’t think so. Perhaps I need to recalibrate my understanding of the term: Early childhood education – relevant. Electric automobiles – relevant. Cookies — Not so much.
Gee, I wonder why people don’t trust marketers…?
Thankfully, a Harvard University marketing professor pointed out that “the strategy of multiple offerings assures (the brand) commands more shelf space and, by extension, less for the brand’s competitors..” Ah… Reality to the rescue.
Let’s be really clear here. Something is not relevant just because we say it is. Relevance is defined by the value received by the intended recipient. To think otherwise besmirches all marketers.
When marketers truly embrace what prospects value, they can produce content that is timely, relevant, and meaningful for consumers – they don’t have to spin words to their advantage.
Go ahead, make your products and services in a variety of colors and flavors – but remember, your audience determines the relevance. Choosing for them does not make your product any more relevant.
If you’d like to better understand how to communicate with potential customers and generate more leads for your business for less money, while measuring the effectiveness of your marketing dollars, contact Crest for an educational marketing assessment.
What are you doing to create value for your clients and prospects? Share it with us in the Comments section below. A real person reads and responds to all comments.
- Create content that separates them from their competition
- Become subject matter experts in their field
- Measure the effectiveness of their marketing $$
- Generate a consistent pipeline of high-quality leads for less
- Turn clients into evangelists