Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Where the cute, tattooed guy fits in

Demographics. You hear about it all the time. The 18-25 age group. The 30-54 age group.

But what if age is not how you should judge the likelihood of a person buying what you are selling?

What is you went by what they said--their interests, attitudes, and aspirations?

Marketing guru Carol Roth, author of the bestselling book The Entrepreneur Equation (, says she used to get pregnancy-related offers all the time based on her age. She was not pregnant. These were wasted.

She also went into a high-end car dealer in gym clothes and was ignored (income level disdained, presumably).

Then a salesman used verbographics instead of demographics or psychographics or other globs of "big data"--he asked her how he could help her. He got the commission.

I used to teach marketing--and I had a list of five reasons people don't buy (attributed to Zig Ziglar maybe?). If you countered them every time, you had a winning direct mail package. The five are: No money, no time, no desire, no need, no trust.

I promise you if you consider all these and listen to people, you will do better than any algorithm.

The man with the tattoos standing in Brooks Brothers may buy six suits--don't assume.  Ask.