In my last blog, I did my best to clear up the initial confusion between the terms advertising and marketing, and this time around I’d like to dive a bit deeper into how the two relate to each other.
Believe it or not, marketing often starts with operations and service. It involves spending a lot of intimate time looking at your products and services in context of your competition. What benefits do you offer? What advantages do you have? How are you different? Finding these points of differentiation is key to being able to execute an effective marketing campaign, and yes, advertising.
So what do we do at SingleHop? We look at our website, our products, our control panel, and our personality as key marketing points. If we didn’t embark on the process of inward reflection before going out to the marketplace, we would not understand what makes us different and thus our messaging would be boring. In other words, it would be lost in the crowd.
Our key differentiation point is our LEAP platform and how it automates all aspects of deployment, management, and maintenance for dedicated servers and cloud computing instances. We focus on our original strengths, priding ourselves on the knowledge that LEAP can be accessed from any device, and that we focus on speedy, timely operations. Every customer interacts with the same group of staff members and never ends up dealing with outsourced support. For us, marketing means a.) identifying the differences between us and our competitors, and b.) using every means possible, including paid advertising, to promote these differences. This self-awareness is the often missing link for many businesses.
Lets be real for a minute here. How many web hosting providers have you seen that advertise the same boring points? For example: “We have 24×7 support and 99.9999% uptime!!” Yes, SingleHop also offer these things, but we don’t make them our primary marketing tool. We wanted to go against the grain. Customers should (and do!) demand these things, so they are no longer selling points, but prerequisites to do business in the first place.
So make no mistake about it: poorly executed campaigns, or companies who buy advertising and think that it is marketing, without doing the early leg work, will be lost in the crowd and will not get good results. After you figure out what exactly is different or better about your firm, then you can design a campaign around it.
The moral of the story? Don’t buy advertising until you’ve thought through your messaging and crafted a marketing campaign that is right for you. Don’t settle on something that doesn’t feel right. Really think about what makes you different before crafting a marketing campaign. It’s all about differentiation in the end.
In my next blog, I’ll talk about designing campaigns and how you can use your messaging to your best advantage!
Co-Founder & CMO