God isn't bland. The Church shouldn't be, either.
Friday Four: Ineffective Marketing

AKA: Death of THE Salesman.

Over the last two weeks I’ve tried to pay attention to marketing that DOESN’T get my attention. It’s amazing how much I spotted.

Why do the big corporate guys continue to throw lots of money at old methods?

Here are four ways you can count on me not taking time to stop and think about your product. I have no numbers to back this up – Just a personal opinion.

What doesn’t get your attention? What can churches learn from these?

1. Knocking on My Door

I just had a salesman knock on my door last week. Wouldn’t take no for answer. Does this still work?

2. Advertising in Airports

There are tons of big ads on the walls at any airport. I’ve seen some really great ads, but they don’t generate a response from me. I’m too worried about getting to my gate to catch my flight, not think about your product.

3. Un-Solicited Email with a “Follow Up” Phone Call

I get these all of the time. A vendor will send a bad sales pitch in an email, and then turn around and call me the next day to “follow up in regards to their email.” Plain and simple… If you’re a salesman and you cold email or call me, you will not get a return call. If I want your service I will contact you first, or find it online.

4. Intermediate Ad Pages with “Skip This Advertisement”

Do these drive you crazy, too? I click on a link thinking I’m about to instantly read an article, and I get the full page ad that says “skip this advertisement.” I never read those. I just click through.

* Post image found on The New York Times website. Christopher Lloyd is playing Willy Loman in “Death of a Salesman” at a playhouse in Vermont.
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  1. David Tonen (Reply) on September 10th, 2010

    These are classic “interruption” advertising methods and people generally hate them. They are not based on relationship they are based on catching you off-guard or interfering with your current focus. They simply seldom work. They irritate and frustrate the consumer.

    We are in a new-world of marketing. People want relationship, trust, and respect. Churches need to realize that marketing is telling a story. We have the best story to tell – the story of Jesus. Build a relationship and tell your story – now that works! Jesus modelled it for us all the time – guess that makes him the best marketer of all time!

  2. Cleve Persinger (Reply) on September 10th, 2010

    Excellent thoughts, David.

    Relationships: BINGO!

    There’s a reason why every church I’ve ever spoken to say personal invites are the #1 reason folks come to their church.

  3. Julie Hofmann Berry (Reply) on September 10th, 2010

    good post.

  4. Andre' Barnes (Reply) on September 10th, 2010

    Yep! Funny and good post Cleve. :)

  5. Katie Bennett Persinger (Reply) on September 10th, 2010

    In general I completely agree, but if an “airport” campaign is done well, it totally does. For instance, it seems at Union Station in Chicago they sell all the ad spots to the same company. Pretty brilliant.

    So, from the time I exit the train, through the terminals, food court, until I’m out of the station, I see the same product. That gives the company a chance to tell a story and blast you so much you can’t ignore it.

    The Keurig advertising at Christmas at Union Station was really good and you ended up getting one as a gift. :-)


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