Subscriber Sönke says his #1 problem is:
My super-sensitive market when it comes to marketing… I am offering online support for psychotherapists.
Many standards of email marketing don't fit that well.
Giveaways? To sales-y. Survey participation? Depends.
Just trying to figure out how things work well with my audience. The #1 advantage of this market? I am a real life supervisor, trainer and teacher at my local training institute. I know their needs very well. But it's difficult to sell. 😉
Well I can certainly identify with this problem.
It's a common issue when marketing to professionals—especially in professions that require deep technical knowledge and training.
A big part of this is that these professionals take themselves seriously, and they want to be seen as serious by their peers.
Anything that smacks of marketing or “commercialism” tends to offend their sensibilities.
You're smart not try to fight this—it's a losing battle.
Often when you feel that resistance in your gut telling you “This won't work in my market”…
What you're sensing is a tension between a specific marketing tactic and the way that your customers view themselves.
In these cases the WRONG thing is to reject the marketing idea out of hand.
What you can and should do is look for the principles behind effective marketing tactics, then adapt them to your specific audience.
For example, running a “viral giveaway” probably won't work in this case.
But what's the idea behind a viral giveaway?
Using incentives to encourage your customers to bring their friends into your orbit.
So instead of a blatant giveaway, you might be able to craft a “refer a colleague” offer that incentivizes them to spread the word about you.
Same principle, different tactic.
So when you're reading about these marketing tools and tricks, keep this “translation process” in mind.
You probably won't be able to deploy the tactic “out of the box,” but there's likely still something there you can use.