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Today's Marketing Cookie - First Impression
"Don't be over self-confident with your first impression of others."
Today's fortune came from Phil Crampe of Woburn, MA. Phil is the eCommerce Manager at SBLI of Massachusetts and we've been working together for many years to generate sales and qualified leads. He is a fearless marketer, measures everything and is never afraid to try new things. You should follow him on Twitter: @crampee
Today's Marketing Cookie is an important word of caution. We encounter many different people in our lives, and it really starts when we're kids. We meet people in school, in the neighborhood, at church, in the boy scouts and girl scouts, and whatever other community groups we encounter along the way. As we grow older and move, start driving, working and enroll in college, we continue to meet more and more and more people. Some people are nice, interesting, wild, inspired, mean, beautiful, ugly, sweet, artistic, ill, athletic, disabled, black, white, grouchy, crazy and even senile. Eventually, we get old enough, that the new people we meet begin to remind us of someone we have met before. We remember how it was with the "artistic type", the "dramatic type" or the "athletic type", and based on first impressions, we automatically file them under whatever pre-formatted grouping our prior experience dictates.
In the first twenty years of your life, you are busy meeting new people. In the second twenty years, you don't meet as many new "types of people" any more and you start grouping people together into profiles based on whoever you met in the first twenty years. By the time you hit forty years old, you'll begin to realize that most of the people you already put into groups are more complex than the superficial profiles you created. Although new people you meet will often remind you of someone you knew previously, chances are very high that if you dig a little deeper, you'll discover something quite unexpected. I've learned that people are marvelously and wonderfully unique and although profiling is much easier, I consciously try NOT to group people as "types" anymore, but rather try to remember them based on what they say about themselves. I've rediscovered some people that I had previously profiled, based an incorrect first impression I had developed of them.
As marketers, we often create profiles for our prospects based on their life stage, job function or job role. When you send direct mail to a list of new mothers, showing an image of a baby, it will likely resonate with them more so than any other image. However, even with an attempt to personalize the letter, it is still a sterile message because it touches them on only one dimension of their lives. As companies begin engaging with their customers through social media, we're finding that the same target audience desires interaction with companies on a much deeper level. People have a first name. They are wonderfully unique, and they want to be recognized as individuals.