Not if you want to make any money, online or off.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, “if you have to EDUCATE your customer about what your service or product does and why they need it” you’ve already lost.
Why is that?
Today I happened to see a TV commercial for bing’s search engine. Now, aside from the fact that a TV commercial to promote an online search engine is ridiculous and a big waste of money, you are simply not going to redirect 85% of Google’s search market share by showing how “cool” your search engine is — because it fails to account for one major aspect of human nature.
People are “creatures of habit.”
And if you want to make any money you have to understand and account for this basic fact.
Let me explain…
Why “Hello World” video email was doomed to failure… and why this matters for you
I first heard about “Hello World” at a business networking meeting run by Contact Advocate.
It must have been around 2006 or so.
Here are some links you can check out (they are all old, dating between 2006 and 2007) — check them out at your leisure (or not):
Anyway, folks I met were raving about this new “revolutionary” marketing tool, allowing you to quickly and easily send video messages by email. Simply hook up a web cam to your computer and away you go.
What’s more people were offering reseller rights, essentially set up as your typical MLM. Meaning, if a company signed up for “Hello World” through your efforts you received a percentage of their monthly service fees as part of your commission.
Needless to say, with everyone and their brother in Connecticut offering “marketing” services you can imagine how many people jumped on the “Hello World” bandwagon. One guy I know (who will remain nameless since he sometimes reads my articles) loved the idea so much he flew to their company headquarters to do his “due diligence” and then promptly quit his job.
He told me he’d be making close to 10k or more each month within the next three months.
So what ever happened to Hello World?
And all those raving fans who jumped on the bandwagon.
Just think about this for a minute, and then consider what ever happened to “video phones.”
Simply this — they faded away into oblivion… and those expected thousands of dollars per month never materialized. And the reason is so simple that it’s almost hardly worth noting.
Once a “new” technology gets entrenched into every day usage, once we get comfortable using a tool in a certain way, it becomes the ONLY WAY to conceivably use the tool.
Business quickly found a use for email because it was super easy to stay connected, both internally and with your customers. In fact, you could bat out email while sitting at home in your underwear yet still present a corporate image.
Quick, easy, painless.
In a typical business day I probably send out over 100 emails… how about you?
Now let me ask you this, would setting up a web cam, fix my lighting, sit “dressed to the nines” and all that nonsense make my emails more effective than there were the “old fashioned” way?
Not long after hearing about “Hello World” people in my networking circle started sending me video emails. And I deleted them just as soon as they arrived. Who wants to sit through a boring two minute marketing speech? Not me. They were typically bad… rambling, off point and boring as hell.
Now, send me a few lines of text and direct me to your website or newsletter… you’re on.
And that’s just it… if you have to educate folks about what you do and why it matters to them, if you have to retrain people to use something they already know and use thoughtless in a “new” way, you’ve already lost. Give up and move on to “Plan B.”
And be quick about it.
So that’s what bing’s new TV commercial brought to mind.
It’s been more than 15 years since I started using Google for my searches. And since their market share is greater than 85% I bet it’s that way for you, too. Bing can spend a billion dollars trying to get us to use their search engine rather than Google, but it will not be money well spent.
That fight has been lost.
The only way they are going to capture new market share is if Google drops the ball and starts serving up garbage when I (and everybody else) looks for something.
Their attempt at capturing more market share is about 14 years too late.
Time for “Plan B” — not that they’ll listen to me.
What about you?
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