I drink my coffee out of a mug that says “Marketing Genius”. It’s not self proclaiming, just a promotional gift. It used to make smile but these days, I feel I am not worthy of the mug. It’s not easy being a channel marketer. I struggle with the best way to get our message out. Just getting someone to listen to your message for a just a minute is difficult, never mind getting them out to an event.
I’ve tried all the gimmicks of the day, so to speak. We’ve done all the chotchkis. Pens, memory sticks, clothing of all varieties, even juggling balls – you name it, we’ve done it. We’ve done the expensive events – boat races, steak dinners, wine tastings and even a full technology symposium. All in an effort to get our name out there and to get someone’s attention.
But we still struggle. These days, we simply don’t have a big marketing budget so we can’t afford an outsourced firm. So how do we get ourselves noticed out of a sea of resellers and manufacturers on a shoestring budget? Yes, we’ve jumped on the social media bandwagon and have this brand new website. We have ongoing calling campaigns. We’ve done small campaigns from the manufacturers with some co-op funds. But in the end, ultimately, it’s difficult to get anyone to pick up that phone or read an email.
Putting myself in the shoes of our potential customers, I ask “why should you notice us?” We’re just a reseller, right? Wrong. We don’t just resell hardware. I know you’ve heard it before “we provide personalized services and solutions”, yada, yada, yada. But it’s the truth. We do provide a personalized level of service that you won’t get from the large manufacturers. They will sell you a single form of technology while we can provide several that work together to make a solution. And let’s be honest, the manufacturing world is in a state of constant change. Oracle bought Sun Microsystems, Dell is buying EMC, HP split into HPE and HP, Inc. The big guys are busy eating each other up and reorganizing. But we’ve been here for nearly 20 years and we haven’t been bought by anyone. We’re a constant and stable presence.
And we’re also not a big commodity reseller. If you want to buy 100 desktops at the lowest price, they are a better choice. But if you want us to look at why you need 100 desktops and if there is perhaps another solution that may better fit your needs, then you should talk to us. We’re not about quantity, we’re about quality.
So what do I want? I just want someone to listen. We have a compelling story and just want to talk. We don’t want do a sales pitch. We want an honest conversation. So please don’t ignore that phone call from us or delete that email. Look at our new website, read our blog, comment on it – make suggestions. Trust me, we are listening. I don’t need to be called a “Marketing Genius”, I would settle for “Happy Marketer”.
~Donna Regan, Marketing