Somewhere, in the middle of the night, the CEO* of an enterprise tech company goes off-message when it comes to the marketing strategy.
Inspired by the story of the new best-selling children’s book sensation “Go the f**k to sleep”, we bring you the story of a CEO* brought to the edge of desperation as he copes with digital marketing.
Just buy the f**king product.
Just buy the thing, and we’ll stop desperately trying to sell it to you online. I mean, we know who you are. You’re on our list, along with 100,000 other apparently random people we’re desperately trying to sell to. We bought a list. You’re on it. Now we must own you.
Honestly, I’m tired of spamming you. Our receptionist cum marketing technician, Sally, told me it was multi-touch marketing. It’s not. It’s spam.
So you landed on our home-page. Sally will send you an email.
You actually opened the email? Now you’re going to get an email every week until your teeth fall out.
You come to our landing page. You become even more important, and we’ll spam you more intensively.
Mention us in conversation with a colleague (“Man, I’m so sick of spam from <company name>.”) Pow. We’ll email you again.
I’m sick of this. Just buy the f**king product, all right? If enough of you comply, I can get Sally on other, better stuff.
Heath works in our mailroom. He also does our SEO. What does he do? I honestly have no idea, but our search traffic looks like my mail: It seems misdirected more often than not. More people come to our site after searching for something called LOLcats than what we actually do.
Please. This is pathetic. Just buy the f**king product.
I’m sick of trying to make sense of traffic to our site. I don’t know why 500 people in Guatemala came to our site last month. I don’t know why they spent an average of 15 minutes there. I don’t care to know.
I could find out. Two unproductive days later I would know, and I would have to increase our product’s price just to justify the time. I could do that.
I really, really, really don’t want to, though. Just buy the f**king product.
Let me tell you why you should:
1. We’re optimized. Heck yeah, we’re optimized! Our product guy, Dmitar, did some optimization. If he can optimize our product as well as he’s optimized his Camry, we’re pretty darned optimized. For what, I don’t know, but very, very optimized nonetheless.
2. We do webinars at Jose’s mother’s house (Jose is our IT support guy). Strangely, she has the best bandwidth we’ve ever seen. And she makes fish burritos every time we do a webinar. If I have to eat another fish burrito… Just buy the f**king product and we’ll stop with the webinars. No more fish burritos.
3. We’ve gotten wise to social media now, and we’re prepared to loose the social media dogs on an unsuspecting world. Now we can sell to you at home, while you’re shampooing your schnauzer, or whatever you do at home. We’ll do it if we need to.
4. Bullet points. We can do bullet points ad infinitum. “10 ways to think and breathe our brand”. “5 tips for reading our emails in the shower”. We don’t like them. You won’t read them. But we can make them forever.
5. We’re cloud-deployed, multi-agile, cross-silo, platform-as-a-service’d, API’d, opensourced, freemiumed, whatever. Tick the box. Tell your IT people whatever you want. It doesn’t matter to me, to be honest.
Just buy the f**king product. If enough of you do it, we can cut out the marketing and sales altogether.
I can sympathize with a CEO like this. B2B marketing can go so wrong in so many ways. But I agree with the core point he makes: It shouldn’t have to hurt. If it hurts for the company marketing and selling, you can bet it’s hurting their potential clients to be marketed and sold to.
Don’t convince them. Help them choose you. That’s what I’m working on. Digital marketing that doesn’t hurt.
*This is a fictive CEO and not any particular CEO from any particular company.