It’s Time to Stop Marketing and Start Smarketing

Here’s a fact…only one in every 250 tadpoles actually becomes a frog. The other 249 become snacks for hungry birds. The one tadpole that does survive still has an uphill battle. The male frogs intent on looking for love migrate to the safest corner of the most convenient pond because they know that’s where the lady frogs hang out. But the bigger male frogs also live there and they make a lot of noise. The smaller frogs are forced to either live in solitude or do something to make themselves sound attractive. They choose the latter. When they feel the presence of a larger competitor, they make a different noise that makes them sound like a bigger frog. In other words, they fake it. They are marketing, but not smarketing!

There’s a Lot of Faking It in Marketing Today

Faking it is more common than we realize. Entrepreneurs leave their Kia Souls at home and rent a BMW to travel to a conference. Struggling coaches create artificial client testimonials in an effort to generate some business. Authors add “best seller” to their book description without revealing the fact that it’s not on a list; it’s just selling better than their other self-published books. The examples are too many to list.

The association of faking it with marketing changes the way people view all marketing. Today, most marketing is disbelieved by consumers simply because they have too much evidence to support their skepticism. They have a hard time believing your course is free. They see a funnel before they ever submit their email addresses. They recognize the upsell, joint venture, and cross-sell quicker than an NFL quarterback recognizes a blitz. They’ve learned to block, sidestep, and avoid. They take the freebie and unsubscribe. They use an email address they never check to gain access to the bait. Automation can’t overcome their savvy behavior. Marketing—as we know it—isn’t as effective as it once was.

Stop Marketing and Start Smarketing

If you do what everyone else is doing, you won’t get what everyone else is getting. You’ll get less. Marketing strategies follow a standard bell curve. Those who dare do something new have to fight the resistance before they achieve any success. As they begin to succeed, they monetize the methodology by offering to teach the strategy to others. Yep, they create courses. So, more people start doing it. More people create courses. More people, more courses. Finally, the market is saturated with the strategy. Consumers start defending themselves. People who bought the courses feel ripped off because they aren’t seeing a return on their investment. The effectiveness of the strategy declines quickly until there are only a few left holding their funnels and looking for joint venture partners.

Is there a way to market without driving people away? Is it possible to create a strategy that delivers your message in such a way that people gravitate toward you? I think so. It’s not called marketing; it’s called smarketing. No, it’s not an attempt to outmaneuver people and trick them into doing business with you. It’s an intentional process of monetizing your intelligence in ways that sync up with what people really want and how they really think. It requires an understanding of adult motivation, adult learning, and the power of influences. In other words, it has very little to do with the marketing strategies that are saturating our email inboxes.

Smarketing is hard work. It’s not something that can be learned in a micro course. It will never become the tool all the “cool kids” use because it isn’t dependent solely on social media. Every smarketing process is unique because people are different. They have different goals, motivations, abilities, and frames of reference. One size doesn’t fit all. In fact, one size doesn’t fit one all the time. Smarketing is fluid and responsive. It is agile and direct. It doesn’t begin with “Hey, I’m a great guy or gal! Buy my stuff!” It’s more complex than that.

If you want to learn more about smarketing, click here. No, there isn’t an autoresponder set to send you anything. I’m just collecting email addresses so I can begin sharing what I’m learning with those who are tired of marketing strategies that over-promise and under-deliver.

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