Why is Marketing Like Aspirin?


When you’ve got a headache, you just want the pain to stop. Your clients have the same problem. They have an ugly Web site, or a blog with no visitors, or would like to start a blog and have no idea how to do it. They’ve got a headache and desperately want someone to cure it for them.

Nobody Cares About You

I saw an ad for Ford trucks on TV yesterday. The ad said, “It’s not just a truck, it’s a Ford!” I’m not in the market for a car (or a truck), but if I were I would want to know what the truck can do for me (not that it’s a Ford).

Ads like this (to quote Claude Hopkins) say, in effect, “Buy my brand. Give me the business you give to others. Let me have the money.”

Not effective in 1920, and not effective now either. Don’t brag about your awards, your state-of-the-art equipment, or your new copy of Photoshop. Your clients don’t care about your stuff.

Sell the Cure

People buy when they see an advantage to themselves: an easy way to do something difficult; tips on how to attract more Web traffic; strategies that get more sales and earn more money.

Small business owners who want to start a blog, but don’t know CSS coding from CVS drugstore, won’t care about your coding skills. They will care that you have a “Launch Your Blog in 20 Minutes” ebook.

Make your client the hero who leaps tall buildings in a single bound – and got the company’s new blog up and running during lunch.

Photo: Pam Ross

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