Our Editorial Assistant Stacy Cornell drove up to New Hampshire last weekend to campaign for her chosen presidential candidate.
New Hampshire is a swing state, so things could go either way. This means residents, already hammered with campaign marketing during primary season, are now dealing with a fresh onslaught of foot soldiers for both sides knocking at their doors.
I hired Stacy because she's an admin whirlwind. She doesn't know much about marketing. Yet, her tactics last weekend helped several voters make up their minds definitively in favor of her candidate. Why?
As one older gentleman told her, "You are the first and only person who's shown up here and asked me with genuine interest what my concerns about Bush and Kerry are. Everybody else just shoved slick marketing brochures at me."
This story reminded me that we're all too apt to focus on pushing out campaigns without listening patiently to the marketplace first. Focus groups, surveys, and usability studies take time and money that many marketers convince themselves they don't have.
Before you write or approve your next bit of copy, at the very least pick up the phone and call a few prospects (or surf sites where they post comments) to find out what their pain points are, and what sorts of verbiage they use to describe them.
I know, I know -- most marketers come from the introvert end of the Myers-Briggs spectrum. Don't let your shyness convince you you're too busy to reach out and ask about pain points. I know mine has in the past, and I always regretted it.
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