Ep8: Don’t Paddle Upstream

Don’t Paddle Upstream.

There are many tactics to use in marketing today. Some work. Some are the equivalent of paddling upstream. Paddling upstream occurs when a marketer fails to understand their shopper flow. They don’t take time to decipher the primal motivations driving their brand and category sales. To increase your shopper motivational share (and sales), a marketer must focus on tactics that work best based on their category Shopper DNA composition.

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This episode is about the different nuances to paddling against (or with) the shopper flow. In the previous podcast I discussed the 18 Primal Principles driving shopper behavior. In this podcast I apply those principles to today’s marketing tactics. Many tactics are ineffective based on a shopper’s DNA (think of it like marketing Kryptonite).

I will cover the following four chapters about paddling upstream in this podcast:

  • Mindset Over Millennial: Sure, on the surface every generation seems different. And while there are behavioral differences, the desire of twenty-something generations is more alike than different. Also, when comparing today’s generations, you find primal motivations are consistent across all generations.
  • Quest for Knowledge: You can’t Google Knowledge. Brand marketing online is product focused. Worse yet, many product categories are mired in marketing lingo. This is not a benefit to shoppers. They are looking for advice. Advice on what product is right for them.
  • We Say, They Say, You Say: Most ads tout how great the brand is. Given the lack of objectivity, many shoppers are skeptic of ads. Therefore, if a brand’s marketing only focuses on product greatness, they are paddling upstream. Brands need an appropriate blend of what they have to say (We Say), influencers speaking on their behalf (You Say), and their customers’ perspective (You Say).

  • Channel Trap: Over-focusing on one channel is paddling upstream. I don’t care if the channel is television, online advertising, or social media. Ironically, it is easy to fall into the channel trap. It’s often comes from infatuation with the latest and greatest tech or falling in love with ego media (a.k.a. television). I finish up the podcast, talking about how to avoid the trap and go with the shopper flow.

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