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Marketing in this day and age needs to be a two-way communication. In a professional service business, it may make more sense to focus on the four C’s of marketing rather than the more traditional four P’s. They are much more customer oriented – and you need to think like your clients to do your best marketing.
Originally coined by Robert F. Lauterborn, co-author of “The New Marketing Paradigm: Integrated Marketing Communications”, the four C’s are more client centered and encourage us to view our business from the client’s perspective. They represent a fundamental shift in the marketing paradigm in response to the dramatic changes in the way people now make their buying decisions.
- Instead of Product – you have Customer Value
- Instead of Place – Convenience
- For Price – Cost
- For Promotion – Communication
Here are some guidelines on these concepts and why they are important to consider in your marketing plan.
You can no longer sell whatever you want to. You can only sell what people specifically want to buy. Understand your client’s needs and wants through ongoing survey and feedback so that you can provide massive value back to them.
With the Internet and increased competition, the availability of similar services is infinite. Think convenience to buy. Make it very convenient for consumers to acquire your products and services. Many websites are set up to sell online 24/7 so that when the client is ready to buy, they don’t have to wait.
Understand consumer’s costs to satisfy their wants and needs. Determine how customers will respond to paying your sales prices by doing some market research. Are your price points set at the level where customers are willing to buy?
Forget Promotion; the new word is Communication. Mass marketing no longer works. Two-way conversation is essential. Your marketing communication may need to be more of a relationship-based process.
In today’s economy, it’s very easy for consumers to take their dollars elsewhere. If you can understand your client’s needs and wants through ongoing survey and feedback, you will be able to provide lots of value back to them.
To promote yourself effectively, you need to stand in your clients and shoes, and look at things from their perspective. If you practice these four C’s you’ll have a better chance of connecting with your potential clients.
Review your marketing practices in the following four areas:
1. Customer Value
Survey your client’s needs and wants on an ongoing basis so that you can provide massive value back to them.
How convenient do you make it for consumers to acquire your products and services? Can they purchase from you 24/7 through your website?
How are customers responding to paying your sales prices? Will they buy at the price points you have set?
Take a look at your marketing communication. Is it one-way or two-way? Do you encourage comments and feedback? Can you say it’s a relationship-based process?
I invite your comments below.