Digital Sales Force℠, Step Two: Getting Noticed. The Mind of the Firm.By Burkey Belser
April 9, 2015
Day one, we introduced the Digital Sales ForceSM as a concept to replace the classic Sales Funnel. Yesterday, we wrote about brand positioning—or getting clear—as a necessary first step in initiating your own Digital Sales ForceSM. Today, we are going to talk about the importance of creative brand expression and content; that is, getting noticed.
To earn attention for your offerings, you simply must stand out from the crowd. It almost goes without saying but that is, in fact, what almost every firm fails to do. They lack the courage or, more generously stated, do not understand the necessity of the risk. David Ogilvy, the late great adman said famously, “You can’t bore people into trying your product or service.” But that is exactly what most firms do.
Let’s dig into this idea a bit because, if you fail at this step, you’ll never pass to the steps ahead. Compelling brand programs do not begin and end at nice design. Of course, they should be well-designed but “pretty” is not a brand. Compelling brands begin with substance and a creative leap, probably well out of your comfort zone. That creative leap is both visual and verbal: it’s a story, a good story, persuasively articulated so your audience feels the difference. “Just Do It” reaches for the best inside of me, the best I can do, not someone else. If the manufacturer has made an honest, authentic connection, then you will believe their gear will bring out the best in you. That tagline, remember, is not about Nike; it’s about you. They could easily have said, “We make the best shoes and sports attire” but would you care? Worse, would you believe them?
Without a strong creative expression, without mustering your courage to take a leap, you don’t have a brand. You have a website, or a logo, or a brochure, or an email campaign. But no brand.
Look, feel, thought-provoking content
Look and feel, that’s one pillar. The other pillar of brand is “voice.” By this we mean the nature of the voice, the attitude behind it, the confidence the voice exhibits—that is, its personality. However, to create a Digital Sales ForceSM demands thought-provoking content. You must go beyond the social personality of the firm. Andy Warhol said, “I’m superficial. But I’m deeply superficial.” What we see and feel in the market (social personality) must be augmented by the mind of the firm: what does the firm think about; what does it say about topics where it professes expertise. This is the engine for our new construct: thought leadership engages the gears from first (brand position—get clear), through second (brand expression—get noticed), into third (get chosen—understanding the mind of the firm). With engaging content, your Digital Sales ForceSM picks up speed.
Let’s rinse and repeat: Brand position is why buyers should care. Brand expression demands buyers take notice. Thought leadership is the mind of the firm made public, explaining why they should choose you.
If you’re smart—and we know you are—by now you are wondering why in the world we have called this a Digital Sales ForceSM. You’re about to learn. Stay calm and mind the gap till tomorrow. You’ll learn how you can move from clarity to getting noticed to getting chosen.