Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Why Paris Hilton's mom may be right...

I almost have a hard time writing these words, admitting that the mom of a Hollywood celebrity may be right, but it's true. The recent John McCain ad (click on TV Ad: CELEB) tries to portray Barack Obama as just a celebrity, like Britney Spears or Paris Hilton, and not a leader fit for the Presidency.

Paris Hilton's mom fired back, and said the Celeb ad was a waste of money. Here's why she might be right.

Like many other big, dumb companies and campaigns, they've forgotten (or haven't bothered) to know what their audience likes and dislikes.

The creator of this ad forgot that in 2008, Americans LOVE celebrities like Britney, Lindsay and Paris. And buying decisions on a product, service or politician are based primarily on emotion, then justified later with logic - not the other way around.

How does this relate to effective marketing? It's simple. You always start with the "who," (i.e., your target market). Not what you think they should like in an ideal world, but what they really want and desire today.

It sounds simple and pretty common sense, but it's amazing today how many business owners overlook this basic, and very important concept. Make sure that your business or website doesn't take for granted that you know your target market, and exactly what they want.

If you have any doubts, use Alex Mandossian's Ask Database, or Survey Monkey to verify if your marketing assumptions are correct.

Knowing who your target market is and what they want is the foundation of your business marketing. Get this wrong, and you're in for a world of hurt. Take the time to use one of these valuable tools to make sure you really know your target market.