Every piece of marketing has a message, but does your message resonate with your target market? This is a more complicated question to answer than you may think, because your perspective as the business owner is completely different from that of your customers. Your message makes perfect sense to you, but that doesn’t mean that it will resonate with your audience!

To illustrate, here’s a common example we’ve all seen: A restaurant is sold to a new owner, who promptly hangs a large banner which reads “UNDER NEW MANAGEMENT.” To him, that message makes perfect sense. He’s excited about his new business, and he wants the world to know it.

But what does that message mean to his audience? Most people will read it as “this restaurant had a whole lot of problems in the past.” Longtime customers may see it and think “Great, now some new guy is going to come in and change everything.”

It’s a message that makes sense to the new owner, but not the majority of his audience. This is a problem that is exceptionally common and one reason that many marketing campaigns fail.

How can you ensure that your message resonates?

Seek input from a variety of sources before launching a campaign. It is 100%impossible for you to be objective about your business. You’re too close to the action, and your perspective is biased. You’re not doing anything wrong… this is normal. Every parent thinks that their baby is the cutest baby in the world.

As you craft your marketing message, seek input from your employees. Seek input from your family. Seek input from friends. Call up other business owners and ask for their thoughts.

Ask whether or not the message speaks to the needs of your target market. Ask whether it positions your business in a positive light. Ask how it makes them feel. Ask if it will intrigue your audience and motivate them to pick up the phone.

As you seek this input, ask for honesty. This process might seem unnecessary to some of you, but the input you receive during this stage may save you from investing thousands of dollars into a flawed concept. Don’t rush it, and don’t disregard opinions that may not be what you’d like to hear.

How do you ensure that your marketing messages are on target? Do you have any tips you’d like to share? Leave a comment below!