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- Marketing is a TV Drama -

How can you know what your clients really want? Look at TV!


In a moment not very typical for me, I found myself reading Entertainment Magazine this weekend.

What got my attention were the TV ratings for the top shows over the past year. What people are watching is quite revealing of what we value in our society. I grabbed my calculator and did this brief analysis:

In any given week in the U.S., people watch 393 million hours of the 27 top rated shows. And the shows they watch break down more or less like this:

Crime Dramas - 162.7 MM (CSI, Law & Order, etc.)

Medical Dramas - 44.2 MM (ER, House, etc.)

Other Dramas - 79 MM (Las Vegas, Desperate Housewives, etc)

Comedy - 39.9 MM (Three Good Men, My Name is Earl, etc.)

Reality - 18.3 (Survivor)

Sports - 16.1 MM (Monday Night Football)

Feel Good - 15.6 MM (Extreme Makeover: Home Edition)

News - 15 MM (60 Minutes)

As you can see, Crime Drama takes the prize by a hefty margin. But if you add it to the other dramas you get a whopping 285.9 million hours of TV or 73.8% of the total TV watched (for the top shows).

That's huge.

And I think it means something. Why are dramas so compelling? Let's look at what most TV dramas have in common.

First of all, there's the good guys and the bad guys. Someone is wrong and the good guys are trying to make it right. You feel sympathetic to the heros. There's a certain amount of pain and suffering (murder, cancer, back-stabbing). And you can always expect some conflict, mystery and suspense in the process.

And, of course, it's all resolved in under an hour.

This is what grabs the attention of a good part of the American public (and probably the rest of the world) for 285.9 million hours every week.

What can this teach you about marketing your business?

Marketing your business is really just telling a story. And if you add drama to your story, you make it a whole lot more interesting. More people will tune in. Your ratings will go up. And yes, the sponsors (clients) will pay you more.

Let me give you the an outline of the script:

Your story starts with the pain

You get immediate attention by focusing on real issues. Talk about what's not working and how much it hurts (and costs) your clients. They'll want to know how it can be made right, and they'll stick around for the rest of the story.

Point the finger at someone outside

It's not their fault that things aren't working. This happens to everyone. The good news is that there is a way out of this mess. They'll stay glued to the set to find out what.

Add some back-story for credibility

Talk about your characters (your clients and you) and how they worked together. Relate how you helped them out of a bad fix and came out smelling like a rose. They're on your side now.

Promise an Ultimate Outcome

Your prospects want resolution. They want things to work out for everyone. What can you deliver that will give them what they need? Spell it out for them with results-oriented language. Prove it with compelling stories.

Show how it all works

Pull back the curtain and reveal the hidden workings of your services. Don't tell it all and don't give too much detail. But fascinate them with the possibilities of applying your solution to their situation.

Invite them to find out more

Leave them a little on the edge, curious about how you can make a difference. Don't push. Pull them by offering previews of the next episode where you'll meet to explore the possibilities.

The More Clients Bottom Line: Add some drama to your marketing - your conversations, your letters, your articles, your web site, your presentations. It's what prospects are looking for. So for goodness sake, give them what they want!


TeleClass Expert Series - "Creating Your Ultimate Outcome"

A key component of your marketing drama is your "Ultimate Outcome." This is the prime factor in people wanting your service. It's what motivates prospects to find out more and is the key to them saying "Yes" to your services.

This 90 minute TeleClass on January 30th is the first in our new monthly "TeleClass Expert Series" which delivers a very specific high-leverage marketing strategy via TeleClass that you can apply immediately to your business.

For the price of an inexpensive business lunch, you'll get proven techniques, ideas, resources, and how-to action plans that will help you attract more clients.

For complete details and to reserve your space in "Creating Your Ultimate Outcome," just click on the link below.


Remember to visit the new More Clients Blog...

...and comment on the ideas in this week's issue.


Until next week, all the best,

Robert Middleton

Helping Independent Professionals Attract More Clients

210 Riverside Drive
Boulder Creek, CA 95006

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© 2006 Robert Middleton, All rights reserved. You are free to use material from the More Clients eZine in whole or in part, as long as you include complete attribution, including live web site link. Please also notify me where the material will appear. The attribution should read:

"By Robert Middleton of Action Plan Marketing. Please visit Robert's web site at for additional marketing articles and resources on marketing for professional service businesses."