Friday Fix

If there is nothing else that you do to improve your marketing program, I’d like to beg for three simple things. These are things I witness daily, and they are such easy fixes. Here goes:

No need to appear desperate or pushy: Increasingly, I go to a new blog and before I can read beyond the headline a pop-up window appears, imploring me to subscribe. I’m not going to subscribe to a blog I haven’t read. Of late, I’ve taken to closing the pop-out window and clicking away from those sites. If you are going to be pushy, I don’t want to hang around and read what you have to say.

A Few Tweets Daily Will Suffice: I want to know about your new products, and see photos, and I want to hear your news. If you have a truly original pearl of wisdom to share, please do. I could use all the wisdom you have. I even want to hear that Junior won the baseball game, or that you liked the new episode of “True Blood” because, geez, I didn’t know that you liked “True Blood,” too, and now I know we have that in common and I want to do business with people I have stuff in common with. Having said that, I don’t want to open my Twitter page and see you cluttering up the stream with tweet after tweet. Like seasoning, you don’t need to overpower us. I tend to unfollow people who tweet too much. I’m not alone in that habit.

Listen to Your Clients: I’m bringing this up out of the blue, because I was just watching an old “Madmen” episode and I was cringing at how the handsome Don Draper was telling a client basically, “Shut-up, you don’t know what you are talking about and that’s why you hired us, so you better like our pitch.” It makes great TV, but in real life, your client just ends up either resenting you, making fun of you behind your back, or firing you. You are a strategic partner. Not a creative dictator.

There used to be this great saying (that seems to have lost its way): “The client is always right.” Granted, it’s not always true, but listen to what they have to say when they tell you why they don’t like your idea. Work with them to uncover what will really help you achieve the goals at hand. I should not have to write this. Yet I heard a story just today of how it happened to a friend. I’ve witnessed it on the client side, and I’ve been tempted to do it on the agency side. It’s tempting to turn into Don Draper, but if you are watching the show, being Don Draper isn’t exactly working out for him. So why bother?

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