My friends company got investment recently. They said initially they sent out their deck to investors with about 20 slides in. After a while they reduced it to 5 slides but included a cover letter with the story of the company on. This made much more interest. And the cover letter made a big difference as it was that that the investors remembered. It contained the emotion. People engage with emotions. I found this before with my About Us page article. When I made it more salesy, people stopped buying. I was actually turning them off our company by miss-using the page for anything other than what it should be used for- building emotion and a compelling story about our brand.
I’m reading Crossing the Chasm by Geoffrey A. Moore. It was written in the 90’s but is completely relevant now- which really surprised me about a book about technology marketing written before social media.
The book talks about differences between types of customers that tech companies have: innovators, early adopters, early majority, late majority, and laggards.
Each customer grouping has a different set of requirements from the products they use, for example an early adopter is interested in trying out new tech which is a bit raw but may give them a unique advantage or appearance; an early majority is the next step down along the curve, and require the product to be bug free and work well for their needs.
A company’s marketing must be targeted directly at the stage that their customers are at in the life cycle of a tech product. Between each distinct customer group is a chasm which must be carefully navigated to avoid falling into the abyss of marketing messages and product development that only loosely fit a customer segment.
The examples and companies mentioned have incredible parallels with the tech scene today. Netscape is still big and Microsoft only just getting there. I am only a couple of chapters in and fascinates already. The core concept – along with learning about the characteristics of each group and the marketing messages needed to appeal to them- is important to any entrepreneur. I think you can swap in “tech” to any product that changes an industries behaviours.
I recommend a good look at it.
The rain guards that protects my legs from dirty puddle water as I ride my bike along Cycle Super Highway on a cold wet December morning, are a marginal gain that turn an awkward journey into a joint fitness and learning opportunity. They are a tool that solves a problem.
My daily ride into Tech Hub from Canary Wharf has become a sacred learning space for me. It used to be an opportunity to just listen to music but now (on the way in at least) it gives me 25 minutes of uninterrupted peddling in which to absorb a podcast on business theory or practise. No matter what the weather, I look forward to that journey.
People often think of business as good ideas to solve problems, but they need to think as much about convenience/ human behaviour. Of ways to make people form habits ideally.
So when thinking about starting your business (on-line), think about the problems you can solve that easily slot into a persons life to give them an easier or better way of doing something? So, what saves people time or money? What gives them something that they need? What gives them peace of mind? No body wants a drill before they buy it, they want to make a hole- start with the problem. Sell the benefits of your solution.
Websites are tools. Especially mobile sites or apps and most people have a smart phone now. The only other thing they are is entertainment. A mix of the 2 is amazing.
The guy who writes this blog has a real down to earth attitude as well as lot of experience in education. An interesting read.