Marketing Matters

Blog archive

Lighten Up Your Marketing

It can be disheartening to think about the e-mail you crafted so carefully being completely ignored or deleted by 90 percent of the recipients. On average, your prospects have to sort through and choose to open or delete over 100 e-mails each day. How can you help push that open rate up to get a few more eyes on the important message that you are sending?

Not Everyone Thinks Technology Is Cool
The first step, often repeated in this blog, is to stand in the shoes of your prospect. You need to think about how you can help them from their perspective, not yours. Yes, there are technology geeks out there who want to read about every new technology. These are not most of your prospects.

Catch the attention of your prospects with the promise of solving their biggest pains. How can your solution save them money, save them time, solve their problem or improve their business? Tell them in the subject line of your e-mail. Tell them in the body of your e-mail. Give them a reason to ask for more.

Have Some Fun
Done well, humor can help you grab some attention when your message hits the inbox. Very few partners use humor in their marketing, taking a conservative approach instead. Perhaps Microsoft has set the tone -- not much humor has come from the business solutions product marketing groups. But even Microsoft is getting in on the action with the Gmail Man video series, which is fun and effective.

For humor to work in your marketing, it really needs to be a part of the organization's personality. If your company takes a fun and positive approach with employees, there is no reason you can't share the same with your customers. Take a look at your next message and see if there is a way to spin in some humor.

Which is how Rob Ciampa, VP of marketing for Microsoft vendor Pixability, came up with his e-mail subject line. Appealing to the challenges of marketing content development that his clients face, Ciampa penned, "Suffering Contentstipation? Your Online Video May Be. Unclog with this Webinar."

The e-mail's call to action was registration for Pixability's upcoming webinar, "How Bad Plumbing Clogs Good Video." While wordplay like that may not appeal to everyone, it caught at least one marketing journalist's eye.   

"We wanted to be relevant and appeal to our customer's pain points but also have some fun. Humor is a little risky, but the danger of always taking the neutral route is that you will be totally ignored." Ciampa said, adding, "And, we had a good open rate."

Take a Risk
There is no doubt that trying a different approach or using humor can be risky, with the potential to annoy or offend. On the other hand, if you don't take some risks in marketing, you stand a good chance of hitting the inbox trash with very predictable regularity.

Have you taken a clever approach to marketing? Leave a comment below or e-mail me and let's share the knowledge.

Posted by Barb Levisay on February 16, 2012