Who doesn’t love the movie “Field of Dreams?”  It stars Kevin Costner who plays a farmer that has a vision of a baseball diamond right in the middle of his corn field and then hears the words “If you build it, he will come.”  This is a classic story that turns a man’s dream into a reality despite facing many obstacles along the way. Unfortunately, unlike the movies, dreams don’t always have a neat and tidy ending.  We find that just because we built something it doesn’t necessarily mean that anyone will come looking for it.

Recently I heard about a company that invested a large sum of money on a high-end sales brochure for their new product.  No expense was spared to create this perfect piece of business collateral to showcase the launch.  At the time of distribution, suppliers were contacted and provided with the product plus the high-end brochure.  While both were indeed very impressive looking and the suppliers were anxious to learn more, an interesting question was immediately asked~

“Who is your target audience for this product?”

With all the excitement over this product launch, no one bothered to research one of the most fundamental questions in marketing.  When it comes to marketing a product or service, it is important to do your homework prior to bringing it to market.  Failing to do so will create numerous risks to the success of your business. Questions that need to be answered include:

  • How will I find my customers?
  • Who will pay for my product/service?
  • Why should they buy it from me?
  • What are the demographics of this market?
  • What are the psychographics?
  • Do I know how to attract this group of people?
  • Do I know what influences them?
Without the answers to guide you, anything spent on high-end sales collateral will be a shot in the dark. You cannot build it first and expect people to want it.  Proper research needs to be conducted to ensure your marketing dollars are well spent.  There’s nothing worse than a closet filled with unused sales collateral. 

Keep it targeted.

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