Step 2 – The Marketing Hourglass

Most marketers are familiar with the concept of the Marketing Funnel: a whole bunch of leads are loaded into the top of a funnel, and they’re choked until a few buyers squeeze out the small end. With the introduction of Twitter and Facebook, people are even hungrier for more leads. The game is always about putting more and more leads into the top of the funnel.

But what good are leads if they aren’t converted into sales, repeat business and referrals? What if, through remarkable customer experience, a company had the ability to retain the same clients and generate a significant number of new leads and referrals from those happy customers?

When it comes to lead referral generation, the customer experience is it.

The marketing hourglass suggests that there’s a logical progression through which every customer comes to know, like, and trust a company. Once that occurs, the customer then decides to try, buy, repeat, and refer.

30498_Duct_Tape_Poster_18x24_PROOF_001This diagram illustrates the logical path a lead should follow to participate in a fully developed Marketing Hourglass. This concept is one of the key elements of the Duct Tape Marketing System.

When one overlays the Duct Tape Marketing System definition of marketing: – “getting someone who has a need to know, like and trust you” – with the intentional act of turning know, like and trust into try, buy, repeat, and refer, the entire logical path for moving someone from initial awareness to advocate becomes a very simple process.

The key is to systematically develop touch points, processes and product/service offerings for each of the 7 phases of the hourglass.

  1. Know – ads, articles, and referred leads
  2. Like – website, reception, and email newsletter
  3. Trust – marketing kit, white papers, and sales presentations
  4. Try – webinars, evaluations, and nurturing activities
  5. Buy – fulfillment, new customer kit, delivery, and financial arrangements
  6. Repeat – post customer survey, cross-sell presentations, and quarterly events
  7. Refer – results reviews, partner introductions, peer-2-peer webinars, and community building

Far too many businesses attempt to go from KNOW to BUY and wonder why it’s so hard. By creating ways to gently move someone to trust, and perhaps even creating low cost offerings as trials, the ultimate conversion to buy gets so much easier.

In order to start thinking about the hourglass concept and current gaps, one should ponder these questions:

–  What is the free or trial offering?

–  What is the starter offering?

–  What is the “make it easy to switch” offering?

–  What is the core offering?

–  What are the add-ons to increase value?

–  What are the members-only offerings?

–  What are the strategic partner pairings?

Step 3:  Publish Educational Content >>