We’re going to look at “What Is a Blatant Marketing Plug?” And Why You Should Do More of It or a blatant marketing message, what it is, and why you should be doing more of it.
So, first of all, what is a blatant marketing plug?
Well, it almost pretty much does what it says. It’s a marketing message that’s, quite frankly, blatant and there’s no other way of calling it. I’ve sent our messages that simply said, “Blatant Marketing Plug” simply because I want people to know that we’re marketing to them.
Now, this might sound a bit weird, sometimes a bit daft, but what I’ve found over the last few years in doing social media is that many people put out lots and lots of stuff in their content and social media and also their email marketing, but don’t actually try selling anything. They’re not actually putting messages out there encouraging people to get in touch to find out more about their product or service.
This type of message, where you’re simply saying, “Guys, we’ve got this on offer. Give us a call, or get in touch, or visit the website if you’d like to find out more.” It’s a blatant marketing message.
Now, on one hand, some people do far too much of it. They’re trying to sell to you constantly. There’s many people on social media and, through their content marketing, don’t do nearly enough of it.
Now, many of the content marketing gurus will go out there and try telling you to be useful. Put out useful, helpful stuff to your audience and, eventually, the audience will come through because they’ll see what a wonderful, useful kind of person you are.
In all honesty, I’m not really a fan of that approach. The reason is because it then becomes a very woolly, very hard to predict, exercise.
I know from my own experience that, if you put out a marketing message, always, always, always, depending on the strength of your database, somebody will respond. It means that it can become virtually predictable.
To some extent, marketing should be, by and large, predictable. If you make X number of phone calls trying to sell your products and services, you will then get X amount of results. You should be able to track this over time. So you get the statistics, if you make 30 phone calls, you get 10 appointments, etc.
The thing with content marketing is that so few people track these kinds of numbers. They spend all this time writing blog posts, putting stuff onto social media, but don’t make nearly enough blatant marketing messages, or blatant marketing plugs.
What that means is you send something out that’s specifically to sell something, specifically to generate inquiries, specifically to get people to respond in some way, put their hand up and perhaps say, “Hmm. I’m interested in this. Tell me more.”
It’s all well and good writing loads of blog posts with loads of useful stuff for them. It’s all well and good trying to put that useful stuff on social media, and connecting with people, and getting involved in discussion. But, at some point, you’re in business. At some point, these channels need to earn their keep and the only way, in my view, to make them properly do that is to put out some kind of blatant marketing plug.
So what can we do? Well, the key is this: There’s lots of talk about every fifth social media item should be salesy, or every third blog post should be trying to promote a particular product, or whatever.
The statistics are kind of meaningless and, to some extent, clearly a lot of the social media gurus make them up to try and justify their keep. I could be wrong. I really hope I am. But, so far for me, the jury’s still out.
But the key is this. Most of us – and I include us in this; we’re just as guilty – most of us should put out more sales and marketing messages into our social media and into our content marketing strategy.
To be honest, it could simply be you write an article on a particular piece and you put right at the bottom in big, bold letters, “If you’d like some help with this, give us a call and we’ll see if we can work something out.” Or, “Give us a call to find out more about what we can do to support you.” It’s just a way of promising people to get in touch for help on a particular topic.
If you’re running social media campaigns, you should regularly be putting out something which promotes a particular product or service that you have going on right now. I know that we do this a couple of times a week in most of our social media and it gets a response.
The thing is, if we didn’t do it, would we get a response? Probably not. A lot of the social media gurus say, “Well, you should be putting out useful stuff, and connecting with people, and being helpful in your target market.” But, unfortunately, being helpful actually just means a lot of people will be helped.
It’s not necessarily selling and, to me, I’m in business to sell. I’m in business to make a profit, as most of us are, to provide for the family, etc., and whatever it is you want to do.
The key is this: Social media, content marketing should pay for itself. It should provide a return on investment.
If you’re just constantly being nice to people, just constantly putting useful stuff out there, and not going out there with a blatant marketing plug on a frequent basis, well, quite frankly, you’re missing out. You really are missing out because social media and content marketing just becomes this wooly activity that may or may not turn into clients at some point.
So I know I’ve ranted on a little bit there. I’ve been quite harsh with the social media folks. And don’t get me wrong, social media is great if used well.
The key message with this is that content marketing, social media marketing, it should always have blatant marketing plugs thrown in, even email marketing.
When’s the last time you sent an email out just to promote something, instead of sending an email out with all your latest progress and all useful stuff with it?
Don’t just tell, sell. I’m not saying you should do it all the time. Don’t be too salesy. People will switch off in a big way.
But the key is this: Are you mixing it up? Are you putting out a blatant marketing plug on a periodic but fairly predictable basis? Are you going out there with something into your target market that simply says, “Hey, we have this on offer right now? Get in touch to find out more. Pick up the phone. Send us an email. Visit the website.”
The thing is: This stuff works. It does take a bit of planning. So I would urge you, if you’re not already doing this, go back and take a look at your social media, take a look at your content marketing, take a look at your emails, and find out when was the last time we actually did this, and can we start a plan of action to put it into effect?
I promise you, your results will change. They will improve. Some people will switch off. That’s the nature of the game. You don’t want to do business with them anyway. But there will be a response and it will be more business for you.
So the key with all of this, go out there and do it. Put out more blatant marketing plugs into your target market.
Here is a link to another one of our blogs that may be useful for you –