Inside Out Marketing

SIXTH STAR RETAIL ARTICLE

Inside Out Marketing

For years, a retailer's marketing strategy was determined by what she decided to advertise when the newspaper or radio rep stopped by to pick-up an ad. (Yes, that was a while ago.)

Over time, the question became "What are we doing with our eblast this week?" Soon enough that evolved to "What are we posting on social media today?"

Even though you have many more marketing options today than did retailers of yore, there is still only one question that should drive every one of your marketing decisions. That is, "What do I want a customer to do in the store (or on the website) as a result of reading/hearing/seeing this information?"  

I call this Inside Out Marketing. It is identifying what you want your customer to do INSIDE your store as a result of this OUTSIDE marketing.

Here's why I start with the end result in mind. First, most retailers do more informational marketing than anything else. They inform shoppers about new products but never tell them what they want them to do with that information.  

A retailer once challenged me and said, "Of course I want them to buy it." I replied that a person might very well buy the product as a result of an informational advertisement or post. They just may buy it somewhere else.

Second, most marketing should include a call to action. For retailers, that call to action is to come into the store, of course. But with Inside Out Marketing, I want the customer to visualize what I want them to do in the store as a result of the marketing.

I want to plant that seed to make a purchase BEFORE they come in. Especially if it is something they can't do online, or not as easily with a larger competitor. Maybe it is to try on a product. Maybe it is to have the staff show the spring colors. (Rather than just telling them what the spring colors are.) Maybe it is to feel how comfortable something feels.

So remember, your marketing shouldn't start with what you should do. It should always begin with what do you want your customer to do. Start there, and then work the details outward until you get the right message with the right marketing vehicle.

So let me ask, how aligned to Inside Out Marketing is your current marketing approach?

Try it this week and next, and I think you'll see that the Inside Out Marketing approach will drive more customers from outside in to your store.

Align your staff's actions with the marketing and you'll see more products go from inside to out the door, too.

- Doug


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