- Next trainer development cohort 10th - 14th June 2024

A Shrewd Marketing Lesson From a Silver Surfer Shop

20th July, 2018

A Shrewd Marketing Lesson From a Silver Surfer Shop

I have a lot of sympathy for doctors at parties.


Cornered by unrelenting guests, they’re often grilled for hours about flaky skin conditions or male pattern baldness.


Because it happens to me, too.


As soon as people find out what I do, I frequently have guests whipping out their phones and asking for my ‘honest opinion’ on their websites, Instagram feed or Facebook. It’s enough to make me reach for a third martini.


So when it happened to me the other day in a tiny little curtain shop, my heart sank. The owner brought up his website and asked what I thought.


Tired and a bit grouchy, I was honest. I said I thought it had a friendly, family-run feel, but that it was a bit old-fashioned and homemade-looking.


The owner beamed at me: ‘Excellent! Just what we were aiming for!’


He explained that their target market was the ‘silver surfer’ pensioner on a budget, and that he didn’t want to look too slick or expensive otherwise he’d put them off (he’d made this mistake in the past). He wanted to differentiate against online competition by highlighting their personal customer service and accessible prices.


Clever guy.


He’d put his market first, before his marketing, and it was paying off.


So this made me think – how many companies get this badly wrong? Creating a business, a brand and a marketing strategy without thinking enough about their target market.


Without thinking deeply enough about the needs and wants of their potential clients, and tailoring their messaging, branding and marketing accordingly.


And this is a problem. Because it doesn’t matter how clever, flashy or expensive your marketing, it’s a big ol’ waste of time if it doesn’t connect with your audience.


Take a look at YOUR branding and your marketing – does it really speak to your market? Does it appeal to their needs and wants? Or just your own….


Make sure your market comes BEFORE your marketing and you’ll see MUCH better results.

University of Cambridge


- Next trainer development cohort 10th - 14th June 2024

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