Marketing is a Three-Ring Circus

What are you doing to attract your audience to your marketing message?

If you need help, mimic the expert platform that has been capturing and holding audience attention for centuries – the circus.

Circuses originally had three rings designed to continuously keep your attention focused on all the action, but busy enough to distract you, so you need to come back time and time again just to make sure you saw everything. And even though many circuses have progressed from the traditional three rings, circus-related entertainment like the popular Cirque du Soleil shows present audiences with so much simultaneous activity, it’s impossible to not want to return for more.

In the marketing world, you need to design your messaging campaign based around those three rings.  Depending on your audience, you can set up the ringmaster center stage, bellowing your company’s news through a bull horn. Or you can introduce a startling distraction in one of the side rings, with trumpeting horns and flashing colors to attract your audience. For a very dramatic effect, you could go a third direction and silence everything, focusing attention on a single platform, forcing your audience to wait with baited breath to see what will happen next.

These three rings can translate into how you market your message.

Do you blast your PR list with press releases, spend valuable ad dollars on TV and radio spots or plaster marketing messages on your websites and send them to your clients via email and snail mail? This can work, especially if you have a brand that is familiar to your audience. The center ring bull horn marketing approach is a tried and true method because it keeps brand names front and center, enticing your clients to use your services and purchase your products.

The flashy distraction in the side ring also works. In the journalism world, everyone knows that a headline makes or breaks a story. If you can put sex or death in the headline, you’ve got a good start in hooking the reader. The same holds true for a marketing campaign. Changing the verbiage, logo and look of your product or service can provide a valuable distraction, even if your overall messaging hasn’t really changed.

How long you’ll be able to hold customer attention can vary though.

Remember the announcement about Apple’s new iPhone 4S? There were some criticisms that really the phone wasn’t “new” but just an upgraded model of the iPhone 4. Yet the flashy distraction marketing plan worked, because plenty of previous iPhone users upgraded to the new 4S model.

But what about the third ring, where silence stretches the tension under the tent to nearly a breaking point? Content marketing fits this analogy perfectly. This strong, educated but not flashy style of marketing can be the most productive, because your audience is captivated.

This kind of content is written to educate and engage an audience, while at the same time getting your name out there.  Tips and advice are the perfect way to connect your product or service with customers as a solution for a problem they may have. This is a way for your company to connect with consumers by offering them valuable information.

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