Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Low Tech, Value Added

My wife and I recently spent a couple of delightful days on St. Simons Island, off the Georgia coast (near Brunswick). http://www.stsimonsguide.com/ssi.html

Parenthetically, this is one terrific place to “chill.” It’s like a mini Hilton Head – beach, boutiques, art galleries, restaurants, history, even a small cineplex – yet without the commercial crassness and overbuilt infrastructure.

What I remember, additionally, is what one independent real estate agent did to help promote her business.

Welcome to the May edition of Not Your Usual Marketing Tips from JDK Marketing Communications Management.

Strolling down the small, main drag in the “downtown” section of the village, we noticed a woman working at her desk, door fully open to let in the sea breezes to her tiny realty office. And to let folks see how “accessible” she was for any inquiries – marketing points right off the bat.

She took the initiative to let us know about property she had, although we assured her we weren’t in the market. Nevertheless, she engaged us quite naturally in conversation and implied it was still a bullish market in St. Simons. Where we learned, by the way, that John Kennedy, Jr. was married on the “QT” and one of my idols – the famed caricaturist from Mad Magazine, Jack Davis – still resides. http://www.americanartarchives.com/davis,jack.htm

She gave us materials, of course, but she also gave us a small, vertical-shaped card with her name and contact info. On the card was a concise listing of restaurants in the immediate area.

Because, after all, while you’re visiting and considering living here, you gotta eat, right?

That’s it -- a simple card with some simple…yet appreciated…information. Because it was timely and informative for us, and still relevant to what she does for a living.

Is that something a business coach, for instance, might hand out? In that case, though, perhaps listing resources like SCORE, the Business Journal, a recommended accountant or tax planner, marketing assistance, or the like? Perhaps a pet sitting company could list a preferred veterinary clinic, local dog parks, a “MeetUp” pet group, hotel chains that accept pets, etc.

It could be in the form of a postcard. It could be a bookmark. It could be on the back of a business card.

You get the idea. And who knows, your prospect/clients just might get the idea themselves that you’re a pretty thoughtful person – who sees a broader-minded picture in the nurturing of a relationship with that prospect.

An old-fashioned approach, perhaps. Born in the laid-back surroundings of a place where the pace may be a little slower. And the wheels of commerce may grind more than they whir. But the results can be just as satisfying as any prototypical high-tech grabbing at one’s senses.

Come back again the first Tuesday of next month for some more sand-in-your-shoes ideas from Not Your Usual Marketing Tips.

Joel Kweskin
And from the "What-Page-Of-Dr.-Spock's-Book-Is-This-From" Department: Commercials for absorbent towels or cleaning solutions where some brat graffitis up the living room wall, or revels in splashing himself with spilled milk or juice...and good ol' Mom smiles bemusedly at her cute little tyke as she prepares to gleefully clean the mess. Is it me, or do both characters deserve to be whacked upside the head..?