The Five Gold-Standard Marketing Rules

Author and marketing genius Steve Cone was at dinner and sitting next to him was the director of marketing for Harley Davidson. Steve asked him why Harley was the premium brand in the world of motorcycles, year after year.

He responded,“We allow overweight middle-aged white guys to dress up in leather on the weekends and ride a Harley through small towns and villages scaring the hell out of the locals.”

How’s that for a brand promise? After all, branding is the art of differentiating yourself from everyone else and Harley “owns” this brand. Suzuki, Kawasaki, Honda and all the other motorcycles out there just blend together as a collection of crotch rockets. Harley, however, stands alone in the marketplace as the premium brand.

What’s your niche?

One of our favorite books, and marketing go-to, is Steve Cone’s “Steal These Ideas: Marketing Secrets That Will Make You A Star.”

Here are another five 'gold-standard' marketing rules you need to live by in your marketing efforts:

1)   The three hidden ingredients in every winning marketing campaign include:

  1. Excitement
  2. News
  3. A compelling call to action

2)   The whole point of any promotion is to:

  1. Get noticed
  2. Solicit a response

3)   A successful brand inspires you to:

  1. Notice it
  2. Love it
  3. Remember it forever and ever
  4. Evoke emotion: even hate or fear!

4)   Truly great brands have four qualities in common, they are:

  1. Inspirational
  2. Indispensable
  3. Dependable
  4. Totally Unique

5)   Differentiating your product requires:

  1. A compelling and truly unique selling proposition
  2. Strong visual brand imagery
  3. An innovative and reliable offering
  4. Memorable and integrated advertising

Take a look at your ads, your brochures, the front page of your website and run them down this checklist. Do they fulfill the requirements listed above? If not, don’t panic, you’re not alone. That’s the real problem – most communities do what everyone else is doing. Now you know why ninety-seven percent of community marketing efforts are ineffective. Yes, 97%!

Now, go out and get Steve Cone’s book and learn HOW to do it right. It’s only $20 (or less) and it’ll pay for itself within the few hours it takes to read.

Now, where did I park my Harley?