“How can you see yourself from far away? Not easy. It’s hard to see the label from inside the bottle,” my “rockstar” friend Thaddeus Rex so aptly observes. So, how can you see your STUFF the way your customers do? Well, (consumers are saying, if you will only listen, says Rex), rather than wrestling us into your stuff, you sit down at our level and ask. When a story emerges, you bottle it up and take it back home, add polish and panache, and send it back.
And that, Thaddeus Rex concludes, is how you leave customers selling your stuff to themselves!
Advertising maven Donny Deutsch looks for the human, emotional connection between a product and its audience. "The market is not an abstract entity," says Deutsch, but "real people with real desires and needs".
As a professional blogger for business, I realize blog marketing isn’t an attempt to create a new market where one doesn't exist. On the contrary, "pull marketing" is designed to attract searchers who have already identified their own need for a particular product or service.
That is not to say that, through blog posts, you can't introduce readers to a solution they hadn't known was an option for them. In fact, because an effective blog is part of an ongoing conversation (as compared with the more static content on traditional websites), there is the chance to introduce unique approaches to satisfying customers' needs.
Whether it’s traditional push marketing (mailers, ads, commercials, etc.) or blogging, at the end of the day, as Donny Deutsch emphasizes, "if a product doesn't meet a need, all the marketing in the world can't sell it."
I think that’s where the Thaddeus Rex concept is so appropriate for us freelance blog content writers to keep in mind as we look for ways to tell our clients’ stories. We don’t (in fact, we can’t) make up those stories. They, our clients, can’t make up the stories, either. The stories need to come from “sitting down at the customer level” until the story emerges. Only after that happens will there be something for us writers to bottle up and add polish and panache.