In this Marketing Rant, I’m focusing on marketing messaging best practices because of an unsolicited business pitch we received that had marketing messaging mistakes in it.
Let’s start by defining marketing messaging. Marketing messaging is the cornerstone of everything you do in marketing. You need to develop marketing messaging when you’re launching a product, initiating a new sales campaign, or prepping for a business presentation.
At the start of any marketing process, you’re determining key marketing messaging points. Your marketing messaging should answer the following questions:
- What IS our product or service?
- Why buy our product or service?
- How are we better or different?, and more.
Additional terms for this are selling messages or unique selling proposition. At the core, marketing messaging must communicate why a potential customer should buy your product or service.
Marketing Messaging Case Study: Digilant
I’m using Digilant as an example because this company recently contacted our marketing agency to sell us something. In doing so, they made every mistake in the book when it comes to marketing messaging.
The Digilant campaign started with an unsolicited email with the following pitch in it – and what you see below is the exact language that was sent in the email.
“Our proprietary technology is layered on top of the #1 ranked DSP and #3 ranked DMP, MediaMath (ranked by the Forrester Wave in 2017) and with our access to 3B+ transactional and behavioral data points, we can help you tap into NEW audiences and drive new revenue streams.”
There are three key marketing messaging mistakes in the Digilant pitch:
- Missing Product or Service Information: This pitch never clearly states product or service the company offers, or what they do.
- Reliance on Industry Jargon: The person who wrote this pitch assumes that everyone else knows the acronyms DSP, DMP, Forrester Wave, and 3B+.
- No “Chunking” of Information: This pitch is one, big, run-on sentence.
Marketing Messaging Is Effective When Your Prospect Understands It
It’s common sense that a marketing campaign can only be effective if your prospect understands what you are saying. The fluffy, non-sensical language in the marketing pitch shown above probably made someone feel important when they wrote it. But when presented with meaningless industry jargon, most people’s eyes glaze over and they shut down, and/or hit the “Delete” key. Pitches like this are both ineffective and off-putting.
How To Avoid Marketing Messaging Mistakes
Here are some tips to avoid marketing messaging mistakes:
- Develop & Polish Your Selling Messages: Any time you’re engaging in marketing / sales activities, you should be developing the marketing messages (selling messages) at the beginning of the process.
- Avoid Industry Jargon: Avoid industry jargon as much as possible. If you must use industry jargon or industry acronyms, define them.
- Don’t Assume Your Prospect Knows You: Take the time to introduce the company & product in clear, simple language.
- “Chunk” Information Into “Digestible” Sections: When you visually “chunk” your information with headlines & subheads with messages in them, and break content into blow-up quotes or bullet points, it’s easier for prospects to read and understand. People process information in many ways and with varying abilities in reading comprehension. When you break information into pieces, everyone benefits.
The bottom line is that most marketing messaging mistakes are avoidable & preventable. One simple way to assess your marketing messaging is to have someone who’s unfamiliar with what you do read your selling messages. Then, question them to see if they understood what you said. If they didn’t understand the messaging, go back to the drawing board until it’s clear.
If you need help with marketing messaging for a sales pitch, brochure, product launch or presentation, contact DeWinter Marketing & PR. We excel at helping professionals & companies clarify and ground their marketing language so it’s understandable & clear.