The Marketing “Two-Step”

By Bernadette Doyle

I recently received the following question from a reader:

“I’m not getting massive success with the marketing I’ve done so far. In fact, not one person has called me because they’ve seen my flyers. I’m starting to think people may be turned off by them. Any suggestions on how I can judge if they’re a turn off?”

First of all, if the telephone isn’t ringing, you know you need to do SOMETHING differently, but this question highlights exactly why I DON’T recommend just printing up a bunch of flyers and randomly distributing them. The flyer itself may be perfect but it may not be getting seen by the right people. Or the flyer may be reaching the right people but not doing a good enough job of motivating them to take action. The problem with this method of marketing is that it’s hard to get feedback on what specifically you need to change.

So first of all, you need to ask yourself, have you got the right brochure reaching the wrong people, the wrong brochure reaching the right people, or worst of all, the wrong brochure reaching the wrong people!

The one thing I know for sure is that when you have the right brochure reaching the right people, you are well on your way to becoming a ‘Client Magnet.’

So this week, I am going to focus on two areas: first of all making sure that you have the ‘right’ marketing materials, and secondly making sure that it reaches the right people.

Getting Your Marketing Materials Right

1. What action do you want the reader to take, as a result of reading your brochure/flyer/web-page/email/sales letter?

The job of your marketing material is to motivate the reader to take action, so first of all, you need to be really clear on what you want to accomplish. Try to accomplish too many things simultaneously, and you will fail.

2. Does your marketing material inform or persuade?

Many people think all they need to do is print up some information about themselves and the services they offer and then wait for the telephone to start ringing.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t work like that!

I think of marketing literature as a ‘sales person in print’. In other words, it needs to do all the things a real live sales person would do: get rapport with the reader, engage in a dialogue about their needs, understand their problems, recommend a solution, overcome objections and close.

Take a long hard look at your marketing material, does it do all of these things? If not, then you need to change it. Even if the action you want the reader to take is ‘phone for a consultation’, you need to include all of the above steps.

When you have done the above, then you need to make sure that your marketing material gets read by the right people.

Getting Your Marketing Material Read By The Right People

As I said above, I don’t recommend randomly distributing flyers, because you have no way of measuring their effectiveness. You can’t tell who saw your brochure and who didn’t. You have no idea who was tempted and who was put off.

So for this reason, I favour a ‘multi-step’ approach which focuses on getting your target audience to ‘raise their hands’ first, THEN you send your brochure and now at least you have some way of measuring the effectiveness of your brochure. The number of sales divided by the number of brochures you sent out equals your conversion rate!

So this is where you need to get creative. Start to brainstorm lists of places where your target audience is likely to congregate. Will you find them online, offline or both? Are they members of clubs or associations?

After you have identified a few places, you need to give them a reason to ‘raise their hands’. I like to offer an ‘Ethical Bribe’ such as a free report, e-course or teleseminar.

When people raise their hands, then you can send them your material (by post or email) and gauge the response.

The point I want to make for now is that YOU need to take steps to make sure your marketing and sales materials are being seen by the right people.

It doesn’t stop there…

So, now can you sit back and wait for the phone to ring? If you have followed the above advice, you can certainly expect SOME response, but the thing you now need to do is measure the effectiveness and see what you can do to increase conversion rates. This is the fun part of marketing, as you can start to see what small changes can bring huge results, just like the flap of a butterfly’s wing in Honolulu causing a tornado in Texas!

But my overriding message for you is this: just changing your sales literature – whether it is a brochure or a web page – without paying attention to WHO is looking at it, is just a stab in the dark.

(c) Bernadette Doyle, 2008. Reprints welcome so long as by-line and article are published intact and all links made live.

Bernadette Doyle publishes her weekly Client Magnets newsletter for trainers, speakers, coaches, consultants, complementary therapists and solo professionals. If you want to get clients calling you instead of you calling them, then sign up for her weekly e-zine now at

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