2010 July: Marketing Matters

2010 July: Marketing Matters“Jack of all trades, master of none” is a figure of speech used in reference to a generalist — a person that is competent, but not outstanding. Is that you? Is that your pizzeria?

Recently I came across a menu/fl yer and found multiple USPs (Unique Selling Points): ‘When Taste Matters’, ‘When Taste and Atmosphere Matter’, ‘Convenience, Variety, Value’. Whoa! Was this the perfect pizzeria or what? Harry Truman had the answer to that one when he said, “If you can’t convince ‘em, confuse ‘em.” This inconsistent message left me drowning in information but starved for knowledge. Without the convincing evidence to see that this is the pizza for me, why should I buy from them? Putting on the “Jack of all trades” persona only tells your customer that your pizza is average at best.

A consistent, convincing message is essential to success. If the above pizzeria would choose the stance of ‘When Taste Matters,’ they easily define their market and their marketing. They know to target a more cultured market. They can screen mailings or other methods of distribution; weed out the cherry-pickers, save money on print and distribution.

Remember, in your own marketing, to always offer solid reasons why your taste is superior (‘We use freshly packed California vine ripened tomatoes that allow us to accomplish a maximum level of freshness’ is a good example). A consistent message eliminates the unnecessary garble so that the necessary USP may convincingly speak and be retained by the consumer.

Certainly as our businesses grow and we meet consumer demands, our message may alter. The above pizzeria may have added dine-in, delivery or a value menu during the recession.

A consistent message communicated frequently gets the job done. Why is the Sunday paper so popular? Coupons! This concept has sunk in. People know where and when to find the information they want. In the same sense, consumers in your market need to know where they can find out about you and when. Without a planned frequency in your marketing, you lose name recognition, awareness and response.

Examine your budget. Can you mail 1,000 pieces per month? Can you door hang on a regular basis? Can you do an e-mail blast weekly? When it comes to frequency, a general rule of thumb is to make enough impressions to get a response and then enough to keep their interest. For example, on a limited budget, try door-hanging in a certain area three times during a month. Now that people know your message, you may only have to do this monthly (or, if you did your job and gathered valuable customer information, you may e-mail twice a month).

Three is generally accepted to be the magic number of impressions needed to get a response. It behooves us to build a marketing campaign around that fact. It takes time to make three impressions and to familiarize potential consumers with your featured products. Most of us deal with employees who are just entering the work force and it is hard for them to keep on top of ever-changing specials. Having a marketing campaign that runs several months allows us to really get that message ingrained, saves on printing and allows your staff to adequately service your customers.

Be ‘Jack’ or be outstanding. ?

Scott Anthony is a Fox’s Pizza Den franchisee in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. He is a monthly contributor to Pizza Today.

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