The Secret Ingredient in Content Marketing

I love and am always reading up on content marketing (or pretty much anything else to do with marketing) and I started to notice a common theme. There is a common theme for which all of your content should be based on and that is:

EMPATHY

Yup, that’s it.  What is it? Empathy is about vicariously understanding your audience and working hard to serve their needs.

“Seeing the world through the eyes of others gives you a competitive advantage because so few businesses have a disciplined method for doing so.” – Brian Solis

Ain’t that the truth! Preach on Brian!

So the next time you revise your customer journey map make sure its based on empathy journey mapping and I believe you will start seeing the results within a couple of months. Empathy isn’t cheap in this age of content shock. If you provide it to your audience in an honest way you will become more valuable that you ever thought.

Manpreet Jassal (@mjassal)

 

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The Future of Marketing is bright! (and some factoids)

The future of marketing is bright, very bright!

I am fortunate enough to work for the largest technology research company in the world: Gartner

The biggest Symposium in the company’s history happened last week and I got to be a part of it. Met the worlds most insightful and sought after analysts. Attended some amazing sessions on future tech/marketing progress. Very cool week.

Marketing is going to be ruling technology. Its fascinating. Marketing is leading the way and technology has not other choice but to follow and keep up.

New emerging role: Chief Marketing Technologist 

Some of my favorite factoids of the week from the Symposium: 

  • Google’s ad revenue surpasses the entire U.S. print industry
  • Amazon’s warehouse space would fill over 700 Madison Square Gardens
  • 55% of consumers share their purchases on a social site
  • Truth in advertising: only 14% trust advertising
  • Google pockets half of all mobile ad spending
  • Greatest obstacle to digital transformation: lack of vision to define corporate strategy

@MJASSAL

My financial cents

Stock market is hitting new highs and I hope you are making money. Here is what you need to do according to me based on all the books and videos on finance I have seen. Tons of research as well on asset allocation.

  • Only buy index funds!  (even in your 401k, only have these funds)
  • If you need an advisor, please get a FEE ONLY advisor
  • If you can, definitely invest in a Roth IRA and max it out every year.
  • Do not get any annuities or permanent life insurance products (scam)

I have a 4 fund portfolio which i think works for 98% of average investors:

  1. VG total stock market index fund
  2. VG total international stock index fund
  3. VG total bond market index fund
  4. REIT index fund

You decide your own asset allocation.

The whole strategy here is long term .  In 20-25 years this is going to be any actively managed funds and save you A LOT on fees.

Enjoy.

@mjassal (please free to ask me any question at all)

Jim Rohn is too gooood!

My favorite from Jim Rohn:

Leadership & Management

jr_seated_1

“The challenge of leadership is to be strong, but not rude; be kind, but not weak; be bold, but not a bully; be thoughtful, but not lazy; be humble, but not timid; be proud, but not arrogant; have humor, but without folly.”

“We must learn to help those who deserve it, not just those who need it. Life responds to deserve not need.”

“My mentor said, ‘Let’s go do it’, not ‘You go do it’. How powerful when someone says, ‘Let’s!'”

“Good people are found not changed. Recently I read a headline that said, “We don’t teach people to be nice. We simply hire nice people.” Wow! What a clever short cut.”

“Managers help people see themselves as they are; Leaders help people to see themselves better than they are.”

“Learn to help people with more than just their jobs: help them with their lives.”

Leaders, whether in the family, in business, in government, or in education, must not allow themselves to mistake intentions for accomplishments.

Managers help people to see themselves as they are. Leaders help people to see themselves better than they are.

Leaders must not be naive. I used to say, “Liars shouldn’t lie.” What a sad waste of words that is! I found out liars are supposed to lie. That’s why we call them liars — they lie! What else would you expect them to do?

We must learn to help those who deserve it, not just those who need it. Life responds to deserve not need.

My mentor said, “Let’s go do it,” not “You go do it.” How powerful when someone says, “Let’s”!

Leaders must understand that some people will inevitably sellout to the evil side. Don’t waste your time wondering why; spend your time discovering who.

When dealing with people, I generally take the obvious approach. When someone says, “This always happens to me and that always happens to me. Why do these things always happen to me?” I simply say, “Beats me. I don’t know. All I know is that those kinds of things seem to happen to people like you.”

We could all use a little coaching. When you’re playing the game, it’s hard to think of everything.

A good objective of leadership is to help those who are doing poorly to do well and to help those who are doing well to do even better.

As a leader you should always start with where people are before you try to take them to where you want them to go.

Quotes by Jim Rohn, America’s Foremost Business Philosopher, reprinted with permission from Jim Rohn International ©2011.
As a world-renowned author and success expert, Jim Rohn touched millions of lives during his 46-year career as a motivational speaker and messenger of positive life change.
For more information on Jim and his popular personal achievement resources or to subscribe to the weekly Jim Rohn Newsletter, visit www.JimRohn.com

Life Insurance and the Marketing for FEAR

Quick back story:

After getting all of my investing and retirement accounts in order a couple of my friends (one of them is a agent and the others father is an agent) suggested that I get Life insurance   I told them I already have term insurance and so does my wife.  They both told me that term is not good and I should get Whole Life Insurance. I asked them about the benefits of whole life and this is where the marketing of FEAR came out.  Here are some of the key phrases they both used:

– You might die broke

– Your taxes might be at 50% when you retire

– The world economy is so volatile you dont know when things will be stable

– The market (stock, financial markets) never returns anyone any real money

– You might die right after your term expires

– You need protection, term is not protection.

Since I am a marketer by trade, you have to know that these tactics do not work anymore.  10 years ago, maybe.  Right now there is so much information available to the common person that they can do their own research and look things up in an instant.  You should not market on fear since that does not do really well with anyone that has some sort of financial education in this case.

Only market on the benefits of the product. That’s it.  If someone doesn’t think the benefits relate to them at all or do not find anything useful in the product, then I would repeat the benefits or come at it on a different angle.  Marketing is about bringing value to the consumer not fear.  Needless to say, I did not buy whole life.

Manpreet Jassal

@mjassal

First time visit was an education and scam from @PowerHRG

I will try to keep this as short as possible.  I wanted to see if I needed a new roof after Sandy, luckily Power HRG (based in Melville, NY) was door knocking trying to solicit business. They knocked on my door and I made an appt for someone to come that night. 

They came about 30 mins early which I didnt mind, sat down and asked me some questions about my house. I told them everything, the guy then showed me videos, educating me on how roofers work.  I really liked being educated. He took me outside and measured the roof himself. I also told him I am thinking of replacing some windows as well.  He went back into his car and got some window products to show me and make me realize why they have the best windows in the world. By the way, he was in my house for 4 hours. I gave hints that I was busy but he still did his thing.

Here comes the (marketing) scam.  He basically created the estimates for the roof and windows separately and then told me his First Time Visit price. If I sign up and do my roof right now it will cost me 15k, if he has to come back it will cost 17k. You gotta be kidding me!! I mean really, 2k more for calling you back to sign up.  Of course this was a MAJOR turn off. He then told me his UPS analogy and how if UPS has to come to the house several times to get a package signed it costs the company a lot of money, so if he had to do the same it costs money. Sounded like a bunch of BS to me. I mean, how am I suppose to compare prices with anyone else? Talk about high pressure sales in your own house. 

Now as a marketer I know the whole shtick but the analogy does not make sense to me since I am the buyer. If I order something and UPS ships it, if they have to come to my house several times, I do not care since I am the buyer.  It costs the same to me either way!  UPS is showing their exceptional customer service and commitment to getting the goods delivered.  After that I thought I am not doing business with Power HRG, I just didn’t like their attitude towards potential customers.  It wasn’t the sales guys fault, he was just doing what he was trained to do, but the training he received was disappointing. 

Moral: Get your marketing story right and give exceptional customer service because that is what will take your from good to great!