“No Brand Is Born An Adult” -Brian Smith Founder of UGG
As a marketing keynote speaker I was happy to interview Brian Smith, the founder of the famous UGG boots. He told me he was targeting women who surf to wear the warm UGG boots after they went surfing yet it was not working
He was using models on the rock at Malibu wearing UGGs for his ads. When he asked the women in surf shops what they thought of the UGG ad, they said “Clearly those girls are not surfers.” They were not buying them in great quantity because the message was off. Brian hired up and coming surfers to be his models and his business tripled in 2 months. The right message to the right audience at the right time in action
As a marketing keynote speaker I know that marketing requires testing and feedback to get that right formula. Many brands expect to start running and Brian says you have to crawl before you walk and then you can run.
What do you do if you have the right message but the wrong idea? Jay Samit, told me on my podcast,
Find the zombie idea.
“Everybody else tells you to nurture your idea, to grow your idea, to love your idea. They’re wrong. The best thing you can do with your big idea is kill it. Before you start hiring people, spending money, whatever, go to people in the field and find out, not relatives and friends that want to help you, go to actual customers and have them tell you why your idea sucks, why it’ll fail, what’s wrong with it.
Because if you can start plugging those holes, “Wow, you’re right, that’s not a good idea. Oh, yeah, what if I do this?” Then you’ll go down a path. When you find that idea that can’t be killed, that’s a zombie idea. That’s the one that you start spending money on.”
When Allan Dibs was on my podcast he shared the big takeaways from using The 1-Page Marketing Plan. As a marketing keynote speaker I see that usually marketing plans are known for being thousands of pages if not hundreds. There are three takeaways. You’re going to get new customers, which then you make more money. The big one that I want to jump into is how to stand out from the crowd. One of the things you talked about Allan is why getting your name out there is a losing strategy. That’s such a common thing as like, “We’re starting a company and we’re going to get our name out there and get all kinds of brand awareness and spend money on Facebook and social media. Then when we’re ready to open the floodgates, people will know who we are.” Why does that not work?
“Build it and they will come,” is a great movie plot. Ask any marketing keynote speaker and you will find that is not such a good marketing strategy. It comes about because people think that, “I can see Pepsi or Coca-Cola, Apple doing this brand awareness stuff. They’re super successful companies. That sounds like a great strategy for me.” If you’re working on property investment, there are property investors who build skyscrapers and they invest hundreds of millions of dollars in their investment. Then there are investors who buy a single small property somewhere out in the suburbs and rent it out. If the guy who’s trying to do the small investment strategy, who’s working on a small scale, if he tries to do the skyscraper strategy where he’s only got enough money to build one level of the skyscraper that’s not going to work. He needs a strategy that’s going to work on a small scale, not a strategy that works on a large scale.
It comes about because of some of the different motivations behind marketing at a large scale and marketing in a small scale. As a marketing keynote speaker I look at small and large scale situations.. At a small scale, the only thing that matters is can we get a profit? Can we get a client? At a large scale, large companies, they have completely different motivations. Making a profit is somewhere within there, but I would put to you that above that is things like placing the board of directors, satisfying superiors, biases, winning creative awards, things like that. Things that are completely useless for small businesses. Small businesses need a small business strategy that works and that comes down to direct response marketing.
Where this came about early in my business career, I thought, “I need to hire a consultant to help me put together a business plan.” I did. I paid him thousands of dollars that I couldn’t afford at the time, but I thought, “This is important. All good businesses have a business plan and a marketing plan.” He did what most consultants do. He put together a beautiful looking plan. It was hundreds of pages. It had beautiful graphs and charts and projections and things like that. I took that plan, flick through it, put it in the top drawer of my desk and the next time that I saw it was when I was moving out of our office and we were taking all the things out of the drawers. I looked at it and throw it in the trash and thought, “What a waste of time and money that was.”
I did recall that there was one part of that process, the creating that plan that was very valuable to me. That was the part inside it called The Marketing Plan. It wasn’t the plan itself that was super valuable to me, but it was the process that me and the consultant went through to do that. Part of what we did was look at, “What’s the target market that we’re going after? What’s the message that we’re going to go to that target market? How are we going to reach them? How are we going to position ourselves? How are we going to price ourselves?” That was a super valuable process because it crystallized to me the things that we needed to do as a business and how we needed to present ourselves and how we needed to pitch out our product and our service to differentiate ourselves from some of the competitors that were in the marketplace. That was a super valuable process to me. That stuck in my mind for many years.
Click below to see how I became a marketing keynote speaker called The Pitch Whisperer that shows salespeople how to become storytellers. When that happens, they are magnetic to clients and become revenue rock stars.