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Everything You Do Is Marketing

Dave Schaaf
Dave Schaaf

‘Always keep your marketing going’, ‘never turn off your marketing’, ‘pay it forward’. You’ve heard the mantra, but what does it really mean?

Marketing is not a one-time activity, and it isn’t limited to a single direct mail campaign (or bandit signs, or even television commercials). Marketing is communication with a specific end game in mind (usually influencing people in a way that will generate revenue for you). Marketing is everything you do. It’s your tone of voice when you answer the phone, it’s how quickly you respond to messages potential sellers leave for you, and it’s how you communicate with potential sellers when you visit a property. It’s not a once and done thing, it’s everything you do. Sure, the logo on your business card is part of it, and so is the message on your voicemail. It’s also holding the door for the person behind you when you enter the property, taking the time to understand their concerns and taking the time to clearly communicate with them to make sure they feel comfortable with the process. It’s optimizing rather than maximizing the opportunity you have before you so both parties feel it’s a win-win situation.

Marketing can start with your logo, but it’s much more than that. A logo is just a picture, and a picture doesn’t mean much until people associate meaning with it. Take the McDonald’s logo. It means something to people across the globe, but it’s not really the Golden Arches logo that matters. It’s the meaning people attach to those Golden Arches. It’s the experience of going to McDonald’s that people think about; the burgers, fries and the smile of the person at the counter. McDonald’s has had that same logo for decades, and in each passing year more and more people associate the McDonald’s experience with those Golden Arches. What if McDonald’s changed their logo every few years? Would they still have the brand recognition they have today? Would their marketing be as strong? It’s doubtful, because each time they changed their logo they would need to re-establish what their new logo means. McDonald’s has consistency and stability going for it, so they leverage it. This is a two way street, and is part of the reason an under-performing organization may change their logo in an attempt to escape their identity (think Datsun to Nissan). In either case, it’s not the artwork of the logo or name of the organization that matters. It’s the meaning people attach to that artwork that matters. That meaning is much more than colors and shapes, it’s the memories people have of their interactions with you.

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