May 1, 2012 |

Marketing Matters: Enough is Enough

By Scott Anthony

When you use too many avenues of marketing


Do you ever feel like you are suffering from marketing overload? Ever wonder if you’re on the brink of hitting your social media tipping point? I’ve been there. Sometimes you have to ask yourself, “how many marketing platforms do I really need to master in order to connect with my customers?

It’s important for us to examine the basics of who we are and what we want to accomplish. And let’s never forget that we are in the hospitality industry. Hospitality is a relationship between guest and host, involving respect for one’s guests and providing for their needs.

Where does marketing fit in? For starters it informs, educates and entertains. And, above all, it sells. So the question becomes, “how can you respectfully meet the needs of people and market your product?” Junk mail, telemarketers and spam are annoyances, after all. What about your marketing, specifically? How many ways can people receive your message without being turned off? Andrew Carnegie once made an insightful statement: “No man becomes rich unless he enriches others.” Keep that in mind and be sure to fully assess the opportunities before jumping on the next marketing band wagon.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Are enough of our customers using the platform in question, and are they likely to respond to your presence on that platform? While bloggers may tout the latest and greatest as a must for all businesses, is your trade area the Silicon Valley or Anytown, USA? If your customers are engaged on another platform, why not survey them before you jump in?
  • Do you understand the new platform and how to use it to the enrichment of your customers and your business? A poorly executed attempt will come off as such and will reflect your credibility in other areas, too. If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?
  • Do you have enough relevant material to engage people on each platform? There is a big difference between making impressions and being redundant. Redundancy does not enrich.

Business relationships are built when people take the time to share and learn more about each other. That happens more naturally in person than through some platform of technology. What cements the bond? Small talk about the things that make us unique and interesting. It is the premise of hospitality.

New technologies allow us to communicate with others more freely and quickly. But as pizzeria operators we need to remember that customers want to deal with someone they can relate to, not just buy from. Once we have acquired that customer base and have a list of names established, then it becomes time to work it. But do so by following your customers. Find a marketing platform they use and make yourself easy to reach and comfortable to be around on that platform. Simplifying things will eliminate the unnecessary. This, in turn, allows your message to be heard loud and clear — and to eventually enrich others.

Scott Anthony is a Fox’s Pizza Den franchisee in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. He is a monthly contributor to Pizza Today and a frequent guest speaker at Pizza Expo.