MRP Lesson 2: Marketing pieces your prospects demand

I get it — before you go changing the way you interact with prospects, you want to make sure you’re not making a monumental mistake.  Here’s some info on how effective these methods are, and more importantly, why they work.

If someone were to tell you that 78.3% of customers wanted something from their vendors, but only 28% of your competitors were providing it, what would you say?

Wouldn’t you call that a golden opportunity to dominate?

Well, here’s your chance.

What prospects want .. and aren’t getting.

Those statistics come from a TechTarget study.  When they surveyed technology buyers, a combined 78.3% of customers deemed case studies (one type of information-based marketing collateral) to be either “very effective” or “somewhat effective” in delivering information vital to purchasing decisions.  However, only 28% of those surveyed said they had access to such collateral.  (The only two things that were rated more effective were white papers – another type of information-based marketing collateral – and trial software downloads.)

What does that tell you?

What it should tell you is that with a little extra thought on your part, you can outclass your competitors and grab more market share.

Who’s doing this already?

If you’re in any of the following industries, chances are the thought leaders in your niche are already using these materials to attract new customers:

Accounting Services Advertising Agencies
Aerospace Application Service Providers
Business Banking Services Business Consulting
Business Information Services Chemicals
Computer Systems & Networking Construction Equipment
Corporate Training Design Firms
Engineered Components Executive Coaching
Financial Services (for business) Hotels & Conference Centers
Industrial Equipment & Components Legal Services
List brokers Marketing Consultants
Medical Equipment & Components Semiconductors
Software Data Communications & Networking Test and Measurement Equipment
Transportation & Logistics

Obviously, that’s not a comprehensive list, but you get the point: If you’re selling business-to-business (B2B), then using information-based marketing collateral is not only an option, it’s virtually a requirement.

Why are these materials effective?

There are several reasons information-based marketing collateral is uniquely effective:

Prospects believe what others say about you more than what you say about yourself. After all, you’ve got a vested interest in presenting yourself in the best possible light.  A customer, on the other hand, can afford to be more honest.

Stories sell. Most information-based marketing collateral, done right, has a strong narrative element.  In them, customers talk about the problems they were experiencing, how they chose your product or service, the path to implementing  your solution, and the results they achieved.  And as your prospects read, they imagine themselves in your customer’s place.  The psychological power of that is far greater than any facts and figures you can throw at them.

A subtle but significant shift in tone makes all the difference. One of the first things you’ll notice about these marketing pieces is how they sound.  There’s no “selling” per se going on here.  And that simple change makes a world of difference in how prospects perceive – and receive – these versus the usual brochure.

How do you achieve that crucial shift in tone?  That’s our next lesson.  Watch your inbox – four days from now, we’ll talk about the importance of “tone,” as well as getting your customers and sales team on board with this new approach and coming up with a game plan.

See you in four days!

Did you just Stumble Upon this?

If you got here without being subscribed to the Reaching the Marketing Resistant Prospect newsletter, you’re missing out! This is lesson #2 in a 13-part series on how to use information-based marketing techniques to slip past your prospects’ anti-marketing barriers and make yourself an indispensable resource. If you’re not already a subscriber, click here to learn more about it.