How to bring customers to you and keep them loyal

A review of Oversubscribed by Daniel Priestley

There is an increasing fight for our attention. Having the best available product or service no longer guarantees success. Customers have to know you, and for that to happen you need to stand out against the competition. In Oversubscribed Daniel Priestly shares his knowledge as a global entrepreneur to help business leaders attract and retain customers.

Who this book is for

This book is ideal for business owners who want to take charge of their marketing and sales strategy. If you’ve been stuck in a rut with cold-calling or in-person conferences this is a great place to start. Oversubscribed isn’t for digital marketing experts or high-performing sales teams. Many of the concepts will be familiar to you.

Why you should read it

Oversubscribed is worth reading because it covers the main challenges that business owners face; identifying their audience, working out positioning, and developing a sales and marketing strategy. The concepts are broken down clearly and the illustrations break up the text in a way that is informative rather than distracting.

Concrete examples and activities for the reader to complete make this book interactive rather than passive. This is essential as it ensures that action is taken before you’ve finished reading. There is often a tendency to absorb information and then neglect the implementation.

Key takeaways

Constant contact

Priestly talks about the 7-11-4 rule in terms of how we form connections. You will find different versions of this within a good marketing strategy, but his principal focuses on time, interactions and locations. So you need to have spent 7 hours, across 11 interactions, in 4 locations to form a bond. I’ve mostly focused on interactions in the past across media (locations) so it was good to have an anchor of total time.

Warm-up your audience

It is always unwise to go in for the kill immediately. Audiences need to know, like, and trust you. In addition to that, they need to be sufficiently interested in your product or service to engage further. One example in Oversubscribed is email marketing for an event. Rather than blasting the audience with an offer to buy, he suggested a step-by-step approach to entice:

  • Write a tailored email about the topic of the event linking to a potential speaker/influencer
  • Have a CTA at the end of the email that encourages engagement, such as key questions/themes they would like to see discussed
  • Follow-up confirming speaker attendance and relay the top questions asked and explain how they will be covered at the event. You can invite people to re-register at this point
  • Update the audience with pre-registration volumes and offer a discount for early bird purchases or another incentive
  • Follow up personally with registrations that didn’t convert into purchases

Know your positioning

You cannot be all things to all people. This is a fundamental rule in marketing strategy and why marketing personas are so important. Once you’ve decided on your target audience you are going to need to establish your positioning. Priestly views positioning as a way of driving market imbalances in your favour. The four key drivers he reviews are:

  • Innovation – you offer something no one else has
  • Relationships – your clients are fans and ignore the competition
  • Convenience – you have a better customer experience
  • Price – you cannot be beaten

You can only have one of these. So think wisely about your audience and which of these matters most. This then becomes the driving force behind your oversubscription.

I understand why Oversubscribed wants to focus on only one of these positioning points, but I think most businesses could benefit from doubling down on their approach to relationships. Research consistently shows it is more profitable to retain and enthuse existing clients than chase new prospects. I do however agree that reviewing your positioning and your competitor’s positioning is essential for success.

Give away ideas but charge for implementation

This is the premise behind content marketing. You entertain and educate your audience then they come to you for implementation (which is where the money is). The challenge is that now everyone creates content the internet is very noisy.

Once again you need to find a way to stand out! This is why the quality of your content matters. Everyone can profess to be an expert, but very few people offer insightful opinions and added value.

Love data

Any marketeer worth their salt will have an interest in data. It’s now the cornerstone of successful campaigns. Priestly talks about how this top-funnel content, a survey, is used to better understand the audience and then personalise the subsequent ads and emails.

Not everyone has the budget or the systems to run this kind of campaign, but the sounding principles apply to all businesses. Understand your audience and amend your messaging to match.

Next steps

One of the strengths of Oversubscribed is that it contains activities. The further you get through the book the more you will be asked to reflect. This makes it a great way to get started with your marketing strategy. I would recommend combining this with Content Mavericks by Andrew and Pete which offers a how-to guide to your content. Then I’d finish off by following the Google Analytics beginners course, because, as we mentioned, you can do very little without data.

Photo by Levi Jones on Unsplash

About Good Words Online

This blog was designed to be a home for all the content I’ve created over the years. It is a mix of book reviews, personal reflections and business learnings. There is no definitive way to live or work, we all make our own choices. I in no way think I am right about any particular subject. This is simply about sharing what I’ve learnt and creating an online reminder for myself.

The name, good words, has no religious references. We can’t be good all the time. Each of us will make mistakes. All we can do is try to learn from them and try and attempt to be a little better next time.

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