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    Form over Substance - or - Substance over Form

    Last updated 7 years ago

    I just read another excellent post by my colleague James Smith entitled "My Sword & My Shield."  Whether you are in Sales or Marketing, you need to read Jame's posts for some really insightful views on the sales process. In summary, his post is about the fact that before they had fancy technology tools like powerpoint, video, and interactive demos, a sales person actually had to listen to the customer, understand their problem and work with them to come up with a solution.  Nowadays many sales "professionals" have lost the art of listening to, and engaging with, the customer to solve their problem. They use high-tech presentations to sell at the customer, counting on the flash and sizzle of the pitch to close the deal. 

    Jame's post hit home with me.  I vividly recall a 6th grade book report project where my dad, a great businessman, asked me why I spent all my time on the cover art for the report but gave a lazy and superficial analysis of the book. Then he said that I had fallen into the trap of "form over substance."  While I didn't appreciate it at the moment it happened, that message stuck with me as I grew and saw examples of it everywhere at school and work. As anyone on my current team would tell you, I'm constantly bemoaning the huge amount of man hours we spend creating beautiful PowerPoints only to see some people use them in a cookie cutter approach, not really understanding why or how they apply to solving the customer's problem.

    The message is simple. Flashy creative and technology might get the customer's attention for a few seconds, but thoughtful analysis/insight/content that explains how the product solves the customer's problem is what truly creates value and enables you to win in the long run.  The old adage still applies ... content is king and substance wins over form.

    R-I-P traditional advertising (graphic)

    Last updated 7 years ago

    Great image for presentations and proposals about online marketing.  Credit to Robert Essenstam who posted this on his blog way back in January 2007. 

    How big is your social funnel? Infographic courtesy of @Intersection1

    Last updated 7 years ago

    Reblogging this infographic from Intersection Consulting.  Some folks think getting a lot of Fans & Followers is the objective of social media marketing. It's not the objective but rather a means to an end.  The real objective is to turn them into customers, or even better, advocates.  

    Nice Compare & Contrast by @SearchInsider of Search Marketing & Social Media Marketing

    Last updated 7 years ago

    ReachCast = Search Discovery + Social Discovery + Reputation Management

    Last updated 7 years ago

    Shameless plug for our new product called ReachCast (the product I am writing this post from and the page you are reading it on).  

    ReachCast is our service for managing and optimizing a small business's extended web presence.  It is a combo of our proprietary technology platform and our web presence professionals who use it to create and "cast" a stream of fresh content across the web, then listen and engage with consumers as they talk about the business online.  

    In summary it's content marketing that over time helps the business increase their discoverability in search engines, drive referrals from their base of fans and followers (social discovery) and build a better online reputation.

    Check out the longer explanation here and follow the ReachCast blog here.

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