The author, Bill Bryson, once wrote, “There are only three things that can kill a farmer: lightning, rolling over in a tractor, and old age.” In other words, farmers are certified tough! And usually pretty wise –there’s a lot to learn while cultivating land.
Here’s a nice lesson: you reap what you sow. That makes sense… Right? If I want to have a lot of corn when harvest comes around, I better plant a bunch of corn seeds in the spring. I need to plant the seeds at the right time, and I need to plant the right seeds – obviously.
Once you’ve got the right seeds and you plant them at the right time, you’ve got to look after the seed – you’ve got to nurture it. After nurturing and doing all you can for the crop, if you’re patient enough to keep with it until harvest, you’ll reap your corn and claim your reward.
Knowing what seed to plant and when to plant it, might not be too hard. Knowing where best to plant the seed and how best to nurture it, on the other hand, might take a bit more expertise and know-how.
Now let’s reel this conversation back to marketing – and to you. You may look at your business and see a need for marketing. You want to plant the seed of marketing. Once a marketing campaign is underway, what then? How do you nurture the seed so you can reap healthy crops come harvest?
The key word here is nurture. For all you vocab buffs out there, this is a definition that dictionary.com gives for nurture: “to support and encourage, as during the period of… development.”
To have a nurturing campaign as part of your marketing campaign, it might feel a little unproductive at first. With a nurturing campaign, the main goal is to support, encourage, and add value to whoever is exposed to the content you create.
A nurturing campaign is about building a strong foundation of relationships – relationships that are built on trust and loyalty.
Most people that are exposed to a business’s marketing, won’t have a need at that moment for whatever is being offered. But, there’s a good chance they or a friend will need whatever the business is offering in the future. If there’s already a relationship between the now searching consumer, they’re going to be much more likely to take advantage of the product or services they need.
AIDA is an acronym that gives a guideline for how to measure successful marketing. AIDA stands for Awareness, Interest, Desire, and Action. Through a nurturing campaign, a larger pool of people will have awareness and interest in a business even if there’s a small chance they’ll become a customer at that moment. If they already have an awareness and an interest in whatever the business offers, it will be much easier to increase their desire that will lead to action in the future.
Brian Brett, a poet, wrote that “Farming is a profession of hope.” In farming, there are a lot of unknowns and a lot can go wrong. But, a farmer who plants and nurtures his seeds earns the hope that when harvest comes, they’ll have healthy crops.
Marketing is a process of hope. There may be some unknowns and some things can always go wrong. But, a business that consistently nurtures and adds value to others, no matter what level of customer they are or aren’t, earns the hope and confidence that their business will reach those who need it at an exponential rate.