I have a saying that I tell family and friends quite frequently, “You can choose to be loud or choose to be heard.” Normally, I am referring to people that see a problem but instead of truly addressing it, they try to embarrass those that are part of the problem. You might see these people on television or on the radio simply ridiculing those that are creating the problem. These people get many “amens” from the choir but very rarely see change. Why? Because they chose to be loud. Had they decided to be heard, they might have addressed those perpetuating the issue from a place of compassion in order to establish mutual respect and understanding. Therefor, increasing the likelihood of them having a positive impact on the perpetrators.
It occurred to me that this applies in marketing as well. The 1980s mode of advertising may not be dead, but it is on life support. New millennium consumers are not interested in just having a brand shown to them every ten minutes by billboard, commercial, static website, flyers, etc. They don’t want to be “talked at”. Instead, they want to interact!
I cringe when I see business owners on social networks simply posting their logos and specials every hour. It is similarly painful to watch individuals at networking events trying to “push” their brand on someone else.
It is much more effective to be interactive. Engage your audience. Ask them questions about what they’re looking for. Ask them for feedback on your brand as well as specific things that you can do to make your business better. If you take this approach and take their feedback to heart, I guarantee results.
Remember, choose to be heard!