What to Focus on in your Marketing Message

What to Focus on in your Marketing Message

What Should You Focus on in Your Marketing Message?

What’s our marketing message going to be? It’s a question faced by every marketer when they contemplate how they’ll attract custom.

The first step is to recognise the tools at your disposal:

  • your knowledge of your target audience’s hopes, dreams, desires and emotions; and
  • your knowledge of your product.

Your marketing message connects the two. Here’s a 3 step process to follow to get to your marketing message.

STEP 1:  Identify what the most powerful desire is that can be applied to your product.

Every product appeals to two or three of these ‘desire types’:

Desire type 1 example:  arthritis pains versus a hangover head-ache.

  • urgency
  • intensity
  • demand that needs satisfying


Desire type 2 example:  real discomfort from hunger versus a craving for gourmet foods.

  • staying power
  • degree of repetition
  • inability to become satiated


Desire type 3 example:  spending £50 to add a gizmo that saves petrol consumption versus spending the same amount on one that merely prevents future repair bills.

  • scope


Every product appeals to two, three or four of these desire types, but ONLY ONE can predominate. You can fit only one in your headline. Only one will generate the best results for your campaign from your marketing message when it runs.

Your choice among these desire types is the most important step you will take when crafting your marketing message.

Choose the desire that will give you the most power across the three desire types. What is your product’s single most overwhelming desire that will reach right into the hearts and minds of your target audience? After all, these people are actively seeking to satisfy this desire at this very moment and so your duty is to focus on delivering it.

STEP 2:  Acknowledge that desire, re-inforce it and (potentially) solve it in a single statement within the headline of your marketing message.

The headline is the bridge between your prospect and your product.

  • If your prospect is aware of your product AND realises it can satisfy his desire, start your headline with the product.
  • If he is not aware of your product, but only of the desire itself, start your headline with the desire.
  • If he isn’t aware of what he really seeks, but is concerned only with a general problem, start the headline with that problem and crystallise it into a specific need.

Your headline doesn’t actually have to mention your product, it just needs to create that connection to the desire, justifying and intensifying it.

STEP 3:  Take the series of performances built into your product and show how these product performances inevitably satisfy that desire.

Every product has a physical element and a functional element. The former is how it is made, put together, shaped. The latter is the product in action, the benefits that a customer gets from consuming your product.

The physical product does NOT sell. It has value only because it does things for people. So the important part of your product is WHAT IT DOES. Yes, the physical composition can help you justify or reinforce the primary performance that you promise your prospect:

  • by justifying price – higher quality materials, higher price.
  • documenting quality – a strong shell of a car, makes your safety claims more credible.
  • assuring performance will continue – quality LED lights will last for 10+ years without change.
  • sharpening the prospects mental picture of performance – with the new Apple X you’re getting a larger screen in a smaller package.
  • giving your product a fresh new basis of believability – like Biki, the drone that swims under water with a 4k camera!


However, it is the performance of your product and how it satisfies the desire of your target market that counts.

Study your product.

List the number of different performance it contains and group these against the desire types that they satisfy. Then feature ONE performance that will harness the greatest sales power of your product right now.

Example of a car’s performances:

  • transportation – gets him, family, luggage from a to b.
  • dependability – freedom from breakdowns, repair bills, etc
  • economy – miles per gallon, lower car tax, insurance.
  • power – getting away from the lights or the annoying dick tailgating you.
  • recognition – status of owning the first electric car in your neighbourhood.
  • value – trade in value
  • novelty – gadgets in the car, wifi, etc, etc


Remember, your marketing message can feature ONLY ONE of these performances. So pick the best. Your target is not waiting for your ad, he is pre-occupied, so what will cut through?

Get help with your next campaign from Finely Fettled. Drop a line to contact@finelyfettled.co.uk



Transformational Consumer

Transformational Consumer


Is Your Consumer Marketing Transformational?

What the Consumer Marketing Manager Should do Next

Even if you live in a world of Consumer Marketing, you may not have heard of Tara-Nicholle Nelson. You should put that right straight away. Her book, The Transformational Consumer, has levelled up the thinking in the world of marketing. It is the must read book for Consumer Marketing Managers in 2017.

The Transformational Consumer Book

She has used her knowledge of transformational consumers to help counter the biggest problem we all face when consumer marketing.


Consumers are faced with way to wall advertising and the filter it out. Some of it easily, because it is generally of the kind that is me, myself and I advertising. Aren’t we good advertising.

Consumers miss more than half of all messages simply by turning their heads. Imagine that. Your self-serving, we’re great aren’t we ad has fat chance of engaging consumers. For some, the answer t all this disengagement, is for them to bombard their target audiences with more, not less, emails. Tara points out that human disengagement is a human problem, so the consumer marketing solution will not be something from the digital world, but with be a human solution.

Consumers need help living the lives they want from themselves, they need help achieving their aims in life. They want to transform themselves. Few of us say to themselves or anyone that may want to listen that this time next year I want to be on the same amount of money, I want to weigh the same, be in the same position at work, or want to know just what I know now, nothing more. No, we want to be the best versions of ourselves for ourselves, our families, our work-colleagues and for the people we spend time with.

Transformational Consumers represent around one half of all consumers. Not a niche then.

Content Marketing West Yorkshire, Consumer Marketing West Yorkshire, Consumer Marketing, High Net Worth Individuals

Help Your Customers Become Healthier, Wealthier and Wiser

Consumer marketing managers should be the first within their respective companies to see the logic of Tara-Nicholle Nelson’s book. If you want engaged consumers you have to provide products that motivated people buy to live a healthier, wealthier and wiser life.The prize of attracting Transformational Consumers is their pursuit of living healthier, wealthier and wiser lives rubs off on their friends, colleagues and neighbours. They engage in a never ending series of personal disruption campaigns – I must fix this about myself, now how do I get that done? Their mindsets are about never-ending growth and taking action.

Personal disruption campaigns? East better (Healthy), exercise more (Healthy), lose weight (Healthy), save more money (Wealthy), invest more wisely (Wealthy), learn a new skill (Wise). Don’t allow yourself to be too narrow gauge on the definitions here. The whole world isn’t about technology and finance.

The Transformational Consumer is constantly looking for brands that will help them change their behaviour and lives. When they find brands that transform their healthy, wealthy and wise goals, magic happens. They fall for the brand. They fall in love.

About Them Consumer Marketing

The key to transforming your consumer marketing, is to do the opposite of what everyone has been telling you recently. Stop telling the stories of your brands or your company, start authentic, relatable, honest before and after stories about them! Then deliver products and content that helps them progress with their journeys – their personal disruption campaigns.

Your challenge as a marketing manager is to remove the resistance, difficulty, frictions and pain points from a Transformational Consumer’s journey. Rethink how you sell to your consumers. How do you currently market your services? All about you?

A good place to start is doing some consumer research. Visually map out and document what the real world journey that someone goes through that your brand or company helps solve. Then use that map of the journey to understand where your company can remove obstacles in the way of customers reaching their health, wealth and wiser goals.

Can you see a time when your company is seen by its consumers as a facilitator of change? If you can remove the ‘stuck moments’ in a person’s life, you can see why folk will really like, engage with and even love your brand. This facilitating knowledge part is where content marketing gets its day. Provide clarity and direction for what to do next, with content that is specific to where they are on their journey and the precise stuck-point they have arrived at. This is all about you as consumer marketing manager (aka entrepreneur, business owner, member of the team) seeing their journey and applying your thinking to how to unstick their journeys. Do that, and they’ll not need selling, they’ll be buying.

Tara-Nicholle Nelson says your company’s role is as mentor, aide, guide or tool to support your consumer’s journey. And if you’re like me, about this point in the book (and podcast) I started to think all this was just west coast of America liberal thinking. You know, a bit woolly. It isn’t of course. It just works. So if you are burning endless finances on me-first advertising, then wake up and smell the Starbucks. Your job is to place your brand at the cross-roads in a consumer’s journey. Kill the disengagement, kill the distrust. Offer them content about them, their problems and show them a way forward that is truly helpful to their journey.

Taking up this new consumer marketing mantle is your call to attention.

Problem First NOT Product First

2017 Consumer marketing is about transitioning from PRODUCT FIRST to PROBLEM FIRST. By answering the “what do we sell?” question in a new way, you’ll discover far more buyers to attract. Can you metophorically helicopter up and have a good look at the real lives of your customers. Are they buying your product’s features? Are they instead facing problems where the transformation your product brings is the answer – e.g. is Slack a group chat system or a way to make better decisions faster? Slack’s website https://slack.com headline is Where Work* Happens. The transformational meat is in the sub-head:

*Whatever work means for you, Slack brings all the pieces and
people you need together so you can actually get things done

So, how do you know whether you are product first or problem first?

  • the dictionary name of the product is in your company name.
  • your brand guidelines are rigid, despite evidence that brand messages aren’t effective.
  • your research programme consists of the CEO testing with a group of friends to confirm the rightness of a previously made decision.
  • you pride yourself being very good at making your product, you’re the best at making your particular product, your the oldest, most innovative, biggest, best whatever that makes your product.

The problem first marketing manager is fixated with solving a problem or a set of problems for their consumers. That’s what they lead with when ask what they do. This approach is un-limiting. A product fixation will limit how creative your product and marketing can ever be.

How to Become a Problem-First Company

Ask your consumer audience what specific behaviour change they want to make. Zoom out.

Use Story to rethink what you sell. Look up ‘story spine’ its a simple template for telling a story. Fill in the blanks…

  1. Once upon a time, there was ____(your customer)________
  2. Every day, ______(problem your customer is having)___________
  3. Until one day, ____(NOT your product’s attributes, but fill this with a progress or behaviour change trigger)____________
  4. And because of that, _____(a consequence of 3. was)_______
  5. And because of that, ____(a consequence of 4. was)________
  6. And because of that, ___(a consequence of 5. was)_________
  7. Until finally, ____(aspiration achieved)_________
  8. And ever since then, ___(in what way is the consumer making progress?)_______

This exercise will also help you get to your why, too. You’ll have heard of Simon Sinek, the TED star and author of Start with Why, who said: “People don’t buy what you sell; they buy why you sell it”.

You’ll also need to start thinking of consumer marketing and specifically your customers in a different way. Your customers are NOT just those people who have bought and reside in your customer database. Your customer is anyone and everyone trying to solve a personal disruption conundrum, like achieve a goal, engage in the healthy, wealthy or wise lifestyle that you help with or support.

Find out where your customer go to get unstuck now. These could be physical or digital locations. Tara-Nicholle Nelson calls them micro-moments. They can reveal valuable insights. Google has done lots of research into micro-moments. They broke them into 4 buckets:

  • I want-to-know moments
  • I want-to-go moments
  • I want-to-do moments
  • I want-to-buy moments

Mobile searches are evolving these. 90% of us use our mobiles to make progress toward a long terms goal on the fly (one-step-at-a-time moments).

You need ti understand these micro-moments so you can show up when they happen.

And when you do show up, then for Goodness Sake, USE NATURAL LANGUAGE in your consumer marketing. Your customers don’t use corporate language to search, or describe their problems, they use natural language. So if your site is populated with corporate gobbledegook, then good luck attracting your target audience!

Once you zoom out and YOU see the problem through the same lens as your customers, then you are equipped to get a deep understanding of how they are approaching and solving that problem. That is a lens in which you will see all sorts of opportunities for re-jigging your marketing, developing resources that they will click on and care about. Even developing product features that they actually care about.

Tara Talks About The Transformational Consumer

Tune into The Next 100 Days Podcast, Episode 64, The Transformational Consumer. There you will hear Tara explain the book’s premises and how your business can directly benefit from new thinking.


Content Marketing, The Transformational Consumer, Lead Generation, The Next 100 Days Podcast

Tara-Nicholle Nelson – The Transformation Consumer

Here’s what Tara said of The Next 100 Days Podcast…

Tara praises The Next 100 Days Podcast:

“Your podcast is a great example of transformational content. You have sifted and sorted through what the experience of an average leader or marketer or executive is, and you realise that people are scattered, people have a lot of stuff going on, very easy in the day to day lives of the people who listen to this podcast to get distracted, and focus on the things that are very urgent instead of things that are important. So, the idea of taking one thing and focusing deeply on it, for 100 days, is itself a content solution for a real transformational problem that your audience has. That is very different from a podcast that would position itself as say, hey, what we do is focus on a bunch of business stuff. The concept of your brand and your podcast is a perfect example of customer centric content”

The essence of Tara’s book is here. But, the best way to learn is it get a copy and read it. http://transformationalconsumer.com

You find much more actionable strategies there too, like how to engage your own staff, your to re-think WHO your competitors are,

Use this link to get a chance of getting a copy of Tara’s book:


If you want help locally, here in the North of England, with making marketing transformations, start a conversation. Call me on +44 1535 654930 or email graham@finelyfettled.co.uk