Owls and owlets – perception issues


Today I happened to visit the Sultanpur bird sanctuary near Gurgaon.  Its a place where a lot of migratory birds, from far-off countries like Russia, Uzbekistan, come during the winter months (Nov-Mar).

Since now its become very hot, most of those birds, return back to their native lands by this time. So we didn’t get to see most of those. However I saw two small spotted Owls and highlighted the same to my family. I am fascinated with Owls. So I immediately noticed them flying.

Our guide however corrected me saying they are owlets. As per my understanding owlets are baby Owls.But our guide was insistent that they were owlets and not owls. But because of my perception that they were owls, my brain didn’t agree till I came back and checked out that while owlets are baby Owls, even those species of owls that are small in size are called owlets.

So what does this have to do with a blog which focus on marketing, human performance and personal finance. In marketing perception is reality. If I think what I am seeing is an owl, even if someone tells me that its an owlet, I don’t believe them. Same way if a customer has formed a perception about something in your product or service, then whatever you say, will not change her perception.

If some other figure of authority says, then, may be they will agree to change, but not otherwise. So you have to be very careful with the kind of perception you are creating with your messaging or your competition is creating on your product, because once made, its very difficult to change.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

A day of marketing challenges

campaign, Marketing, single target market

Today was a very dense day in terms of doing some massive amount of brainwork. Generally my day is full of a lot of transactions which eat up my brain power. Today however was majorly about thinking through a couple of market related problems.

In one situation we had to sit down and physically analyse the database, because there was no response from the database to a campaign we sent. In any campaign, if there’s a problem with the response, then the first thing I like to look at is the database. So after testing multiple messaging when we didn’t get a response, we had to sit down to figure out the challenges with the database. So we went down the list of companies with a comb to figure out what could be the challenge. This was pretty time consuming as well as mentally exhausting.

In the second case, it is still work in progress, I had to analyse on figuring out a single target market for one of the service areas that we deal in. Figuring out a single target market is time consuming because you have to start with the whole market and then keep stripping down. However in this process, you don’t want to miss out on any portion of the market to analyse. So you try to analyse the market from the attributes perspective first, then usage perspective, to ensure that you are not missing out on a lucrative market.

After that you have to see if the market has a decent size for you to operate in. While you have niched down to such a specific market that has only say 100 participants, then the chance of you being able to convert a substantial number is limited. Having said that, this quantity is a relative thing. If you are selling airplanes like a Boeing or Airbus, in any country you may not have more than a handful of airlines. But because the ticket size is so huge that even those handful is a big market.

I shared how in a typical day we analyse the marketing issues. I will look forward to your comments on how you analyse marketing related problems.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

In marketing “failing” is TESTING

Fear, Human Brain, Marketing, Testing

A lot of people in life go about scared of failing. There could be a lot of professions where failing is considered to be a “sin”. In marketing on the other hand if you don’t try different things you won’t know what will work.

You can’t try out different things without failing. If you don’t fail, you can’t succeed in marketing. That’s why in marketing they prefer to use the word testing.

In marketing you have to test everything – from your market, to your message, to your medium.

I have written a lot of posts on the concept of testing in marketing. So why this addition post. Today I was watching a video of Brene Brown on Netflix. I watch this video from time to time.. The video is all about how shame is the primary reason people don’t succeed. Each time I watch, this video, one thing that stands out is that it is the shame of failing that creates the fear in our mind for trying anything.

While I also fall prey to not trying because of fear, I have seen sometimes ,that the thing that I am resisting , is actually what can solve a lot of my problems. But because my brain wants to protect me from the shame, just in case I don’t succeed, it creates this fear inside me.

In early days of human evolution it was the physical fear of getting killed that caused our brains to resist trying something new. But now those kind of things are very few. Its more about ” what people will say” that causes us to not try anything.

While in your life you may decide to take chances or not is your choice. But if you want to succeed in marketing, you will need to test all the time. A lot of the tests will not work, but you learn from them and move forward.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

The actual nuance of identifying a Single Target Market – 2

Marketing, messaging, niche, segmentation, single target market

When you do the exercise of narrowing down a segment based on different attributes or use cases, as I listed in the previous post on this topic, you keep eliminating a lot of the other areas which could divert your attention.

Then once you have been able to come down to the narrowest market (single target market) and figured out the economics of reaching out to that market, you can start working on the messaging.

Messaging is a very complex topic and by just reading a few lines here will not show you the gravity of the work that needs to be done to work it out. However by narrowing down, you can now put yourself in the shoes of the person whom you could be talking to. Once you are in her shoes, you can start thinking about what would go on in their mind related to what you are offering. Since you have too only think for this one person, life becomes much easier and you can create more targeted messages.

Sometimes the things you sell, don’t directly feature in the mind of the person, so you need to go one stage upstream and then create the messaging. Like no one, would think of outdoor – wedding – catering, until there’s a marriage that is taking place in the family. So in such cases your message will need to be focused on how it will get moulded with the marriage discussion going on in the mind of. the person you are targeting and then place the idea of an outdoor wedding. Since if they won’t think of an outdoor wedding, they can’t think of an outdoor – wedding – catering.

You cannot create powerful messaging without entering the mind of the prospect. And the best way in my opinion is to get down to a single target market.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!