The sea of information is definitely rising, and the researchers and scientists who are our prospects and customers are deluged with emails, webinars, presentations and websites about new techniques, research developments, projects, meetings, webinars, etc. on a daily basis. Of course as scientists, our prospects are knowledgeable in their fields and expected to keep up with important developments. Yet all this information flooding them requires that they develop filters to keep out the information that they perceive as not relevant to them, the noise. And sometimes our messages, our information gets buried in the noise. How do we avoid this? How do we get past these filters?
Remember, that while we may produce products, what we offer for sale to customers are solutions to their real research needs (better results, faster assays, more reliable results, environmentally friendly products, etc.). Again we are left with the question of getting our message past filters.
The first (and most important) step in getting past the noise filters then is to learn what is valuable to our prospects. While our marketing and sales messages must focus on the value of our solution, we first need to know what our prospects value. So how do we define value? We don’t of course, our customers define value. And by hearing what they tell us, by engaging in a dialog, we can learn what is valuable to them, what their needs are. We can listen to our prospects messages to hear what they say during meetings, what questions they post on websites, what information is important to them during calls. We can also keep track of the feedback posted on social media sites and what questions they ask our technical staff. By hearing and then tracking all this information we will learn what is valuable to our prospects and customers.
The second step then is to make sure that our information, our message, provides this value to our prospects. We need to make sure that if the prospect invests the time to hear our message, to learn about the solution we are offering that it will be a worthwhile investment for them. Part of the requirement then is to have credibility, to be a well-though of supplier of life science solutions, to have a good reputation.
The next step in this communications process, is classical marketing. We need to have a consistent message. Whether the message is delivered on a Facebook page, a webinar, a sales presentation or on our website, the message must be consistent. Remember that the noise level is high, so to have a scientist or life science researcher remember our message they are going to have to hear it multiple times. Typically you have to be exposed to the message 3-6 times before it sticks. Thus the importance of the message consistency and frequency. The information presented on a banner ad must be reinforced by the messaging on the website and discussions with technical support staff.
Finally, it is necessary to make the information on our solutions available to our prospective customers when and where they want to find it. We may think that our website is the best location, but our prospects may expect to learn about new solutions from key opinion leaders, or from co-workers, or from a portal site (such as the Technology Networks or SelectScience portals for example). So it is important to find out where they look for new information.
So how do we get past the noise filters? How do we get information on our solutions to our prospects? Learn what our prospects value, make sure our information conveys this value, then we need to deliver a clear and consistent message about our solution and finally make the information on our solution available when and where our prospects want to find it.
Don’t get filtered out – get your message past the noise!