Key Marketing Principle 1: Top of Mind

From last week…

“What are the three goals?” Zoot asked.
“Glad you asked, Zoot ‘ol pal,” Marka said with a wink.

Now, on to a new two part series…remember, fire = print.

Marka began a new conversation with Zoot. “All players in the hearth and fire lighting industry compete in a super-tough, service-based business environment. Therefore, winning ‘top-of-mind’ market position is critically important for our long-term success.”

“And this means?” Zoot drummed his fingers on the conference table.

If a ‘key business influencer’ needs what we provide and our name immediately comes to mind, then we’ve won ‘top-of-mind’ market position in that individual’s head,” Marka answered. “Does this mean we’ll get the business? Not necessarily. More than likely, however, we’ll get a sales inquiry and business opportunity. What we do with this depends on how comfortable our prospect is with FEI and our value proposition.”

“How do we start?” Zoot asked. “Olympus is a big area with lots of people and hearths. It’s too much territory for my sales runners.”

“That’s what we’ve been talking about,” Marka said. “Marketing is a cheaper way of influencing more people than our runners ever can.


Is it as effective, though?” Zoot asked.

“Good question,” Marka said. “No, because people like dealing with other people most of the time. However, a sales visit costs dozens or even hundreds of times as much as a well-executed marketing ‘touch.’ When we factor in cost ‘per impression,’ the answer is absolutely yes.”

“What about our new corporate sales efforts?” Zoot asked. “More of our business is coming from other businesses. Each sale is a whole lot bigger. Surely this is a sales-only activity, right?”

“No!” Marka shouted. “Marketing principals apply here too. Useful communications, regularly delivered to key business people at FEI’s carefully targeted B2B prospects are essential to winning top-of-mind positioning. Deploying a variety of marketing vehicles in conjunction with your group’s on-the-money sales efforts will keep our name on the ‘tip-of-the-tongue’ of important people in FEI’s marketplaces. ‘Out-of-sight, out-of-mind’ is a real phenomenon and can be combated through regular contact.”

T.J. Tedesco is a sales growth, business strategy, marketing and PR consultant operating at the intersection of clear vision, compelling content and effective outreach practices. For nearly two decades, T.J. has been an independent consultant and sales growth team leader. Previously, he sold commercial printing, graphic arts machinery and supplies, and finishing and bindery services. T.J. helps North American companies with content development, Web and print design leadership, nurture marketing programs, sales coaching, sales team alignment and business strategy. Since 1996, T.J. has worked with more than 100 clients on retainer, 80 percent in the graphic arts industry. T.J. is author of "Win Top-of-Mind Positioning," "Playbook for Selling Success in the Graphic Arts Industry," "Fire! How Marketing Got Hot," "Direct Mail Pal" and four more books published by PIA. He can be reached at (301) 404-2244 or
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