The coffee date is a low level of commitment for a first date. You always have an excuse in your back pocket, like a last-minute meeting or an errand that just popped up. If things don’t go well, nobody loses face and you just move on.
In the marketing world, the equivalent of the coffee date may be the casual social media post. You aren’t investing too much time and it’s okay if you don’t connect with everyone when you put a thought or quote up on Facebook or LinkedIn.
There are a few more ways that marketing is a bit like dating. Let’s examine them:
Go Where Your Targets Hang Out: You’re not going to meet someone tall, dark and handsome at the ladies’ quilting hour. And you’re not likely to meet a girl who is a night owl like you at the 5 a.m. workout at the gym. You’re going to have to be more strategic.
It’s the same with marketing. If you’ve discovered that your target audience is mostly drawn to LinkedIn, not Facebook, you need to spend your time on LinkedIn. If you continue posting on Facebook hoping to get some engagement going, you’re likely to miss out on opportunities.
Be Yourself: If, on your first date, you present yourself as a deep-thinking bookworm, but what you really prefer is The Bachelor, be prepared for a short-lived relationship. If you’re not being yourself, you’re going to attract the wrong people.
The same is true for brands. If you desperately want to be a luxury product, but the real draw is how down-to-earth and cost-friendly your brand is, you’re going to have to embrace your relatable self and make the most of it.
Get Out There: You know this drill: your best friend wants desperately to meet someone, but you can’t help but notice that her Friday night pairing of Hulu and Ben & Jerry’s isn’t likely to produce an eligible match. You can’t meet someone if you’re not out there.
There is so much competition for air space on social media, email and paid online ads. You’re not going to find that customers come to find you. Instead, you’ve got to produce valuable content and get your brand name out there, contributing to the conversation. And if they do go looking for you, plenty of fresh content will help ensure that your company pops up when they do a search.
Luck Isn’t a Strategy: Too many romcoms may have you believing that the perfect someone is out there for you, waiting for that pixie dust moment when you stumble over one another in a bookstore, order the same coffee or realize you hate each other with a vengeance just because you secretly love each other.
Customer relationships aren’t so starry-eyed, either. They generally occur most predictably when a company knows what they want to accomplish and they set goals and then develop a strategy to achieve them. That’s how growth through customer acquisition happens.
Marketing is a lot like dating, but we’re about to introduce you to one of the most important relationships of your life. That’s right, it’s us: SJC Marketing. Don’t worry, we can start with coffee. We’ll even buy.