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Newsletter #795: The “Show Them the Numbers” Issue

Welcome back to the Damn, I Wish I Thought of That! newsletter. This is text of the great issue all of our email subscribers just received. Sign yourself up using the handy form on the right.]

Numbers can be a smart marketer’s best friend. They’re a great way to better tell the story, to show big differences, and to cut through the marketing jargon. A few ways to use them:

1> With tips
2> With savings
3> With egos
4> Check it out: Nerds send a camera into space

1> With tips

When people started selling tip calculators, you’d have thought more restaurants would have gotten the hint that figuring out the tip is often frustrating. Hema’s Kitchen in Chicago makes it easy — each bill includes the dollar amount to add if you want to tip 15, 18, or 20 percent. It’s a tiny gesture, but it saves a bunch of headaches.

The lesson: If customers have to pull out a calculator to figure out how much they owe you, there’s something wrong with your billing process.

2> With savings

Instead of telling customers you’ll save them money, try helping them do the math themselves. Google created a savings calculator to make it easy for prospects to compare what they would spend on Microsoft Exchange 2007 versus Google’s messaging applications. In a few clicks, users get an itemized, plain-English estimate on how much they could save based on what they actually use.

The lesson: Don’t tell prospects how much they’ll save, give them the tools to figure it out on their own.

Learn more: Google Apps

3> With egos

Numbers, statistics, and scoreboards are great ways to get at the egos of your customers. When Virginia-based OPower started sending customers data comparing their energy usage to their neighbors’, more than 75 percent took measurable steps to conserve more energy. This simple tactic is proving more efficient and more effective than fancy meters or expensive ad campaigns.

The lesson: Showing your customers how their numbers stack up against others can be a fantastic motivator.

Learn more: National Geographic

4> Check it out: Nerds send a camera into space

See how a weather balloon + a camera + some nerdy photographers = one cool video.

Check it out: Say Mayday

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