If you’ve never had the opportunity to, watch the movie Hitch. The movie is a couple years old, but still a fantastic metaphor for marketing. In the movie, Alex Hitchens (Will Smith), educates guys without a chance to find the girl of their dreams. The advice he gives is to try to reduce your glowing faults, pay attention to your date, and do your homework.
The most memorable scene is a speed-dating scene where an argument pursues. Sara (Eva Mendes) is absolutely insulted that Hitch preplans their dates, digging up clues about her and her families’ heritage to make the dates more memorable. She’s insulted that she’s being manipulated, Hitch is amazed because he’s just trying to do things that win her over.
At the core of the movie is whether it’s sincere or not. It wasn’t the coaching, the changes, the planning, etc. that really angered Sarah, it was the idea that Hitch wasn’t sincere, wasn’t looking for a relationship, and may have just been looking to put another notch in his bedpost.
Marketing is about doing your homework to understand your customer or prospect, then building a relationship on sincerity and trust. Many of us have products and services that are fantastic, but we’re unable to ‘attract’ folks into trying those products or services. If they only gave us a chance, we know that we could convert them into a customer who loves us.
Perhaps there’s some irony in the fact that the Internet has so many dating services and so many marketing consultants. Most of us need help with our Marketing (and getting the girl!).