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Are They Buying What You’re Selling?

EggsA few weeks ago we adopted some rescue chickens.  Emerald, Lucky and Suzie now roam freely, if currently slightly featherless, around the garden, fighting over worms.  Life for them has gone from a cage devoid of daylight, fresh air and space….to sun, rain (what is that??? exclaimed three bemused hens), wind and a quarter of an acre of grass.

The kids, with great excitement, decided that they were going to have the first eggs produced.  Charlie was going to have Emerald’s eggs, and Sam wanted Lucky’s.

The thing is, egg laying is a bit of a hit and miss affair at the moment (too busy finding worms and having dust baths to lay eggs), but generally we get two a day.  Lucky – we think – still seems a little unsure as to this egg laying business so has politely declined the offer of taking part for the foreseeable future.  So, we still have to augment our kitchen egg basket from the much more enthusiastic free range girls from the local farm.

Nevertheless, for tea one evening I said we were having egg and chips.  Not any old unhealthy egg and chips mind you, but home-made oven baked chips (no oil) and eggs ‘fried’ with no oil in a non-stick frying pan.  I think they all taste better that way, and are far better for you with no fat…..but I digress.

The thing is, for the past two years or so, Sam has decided (in preparation and practice for being a grumpy teenager) that he no longer likes fried eggs.  In fact he “detests them” and thinks they’re “disgusting”.  So you can imagine his response when I said we were having egg and chips for tea.

Half way through his nose wrinkling in horror, I dropped into the conversation that they were Lucky’s eggs which he specifically asked for.

“Oh.  OK” he said.  No more wrinkling of nose, and he returned to watching The Simpsons. (High brow TV in this household!!)

And at that tea time, dear reader, he ate two fried eggs with gusto.  Declared them delicious and asked if there were any more.  Mr R and I exchanged a glance across the table, and remained silent – as only wise parents do.  Ahem.

Now, I apologise for my slight transgression, but sometimes with children, needs must.  And anyway, how are you ever supposed to tell which eggs belong to which chicken?  As my Grandad used to say, “eggs is eggs”!  The fact remained that Sam ate the eggs because he thought they were Lucky’s.  Those were the eggs he wanted, so those are the ones he “bought”.

Now, whilst I would never advocate lying to your customers or clients (legal guidelines are that all marketing communication should be “legal, decent, honest and truthful” in both the letter and the spirit of the Code), you do need to listen to what they want to buy and then sell them that.  That doesn’t mean you have to fundamentally change what you’re doing; it does mean you may have to change your messaging, or how you communicate your products or services.

For instance, if you’re selling holistic relaxation massage, but what your clients want is to get rid of their stress, then your marketing communication should focus around stress relieving massage.  Same thing, just differently communicated in a way that people want to buy.

If you’re a designer and are selling the design of logos, websites, corporate stationery etc, but your clients want their company to stand out from the crowd, then your marketing communication should focus around “design that rocks” or design that gives businesses real stand out.

Whatever business you’re in, have a think about what you sell…and what it is exactly that your clients want to buy.  Are they the same?  What messaging do you need to change?

And when are you going to make those changes?

Just like I did with Sam and the eggs, you’ll notice a considerable difference in the take up of your product or service.

And that ultimately means a considerable difference to your bottom line!

See you next week.
Dedicated to your success as always,

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