Date your marketing strategy before you marry it.

If Tinder taught me anything, it taught me there are nearly an infinite number of people to swipe through. Why settle for the first person who likes you or the first person you like? You’ll quickly learn that dating is a statistical game. With a few dates (or for some — hundreds) a person can find that special someone in the world that is just as nutty as they are. While that girl in the revealing outfit or guy with the washboards abs might look good, they might not be your ideal partner (or customer). You may need someone with a mustache or person who is an avid gamer. Wouldn’t be great if you could do the same with your marketing — pull together some headlines and photography and start dating your target market? You can, and here’s how.

The Mind, Heart, & Body

We think a good customer or a good potential date has 3 things. First — a heart connection, if you don’t feel it, eventually, it is not going to work. You also need a mental connection. Ever sat in a date and wondered “does this person realize what is coming out of their mouth?” Lastly, or some may say firstly, you need a physical connection. I will explain further…

The Mental Connection

He is giving a strategy the eye… it is getting serious…he is about to make a move…

Allow yourself to free-flow ideas about what to say into an app like Grammarly. Grammarly will make sure that your spelling and grammar are worked out. Create a few Calls-to-Action, a few headlines, don’t worry about getting them perfect, worry about getting a few to test. When you are looking for customers, you’re not going to win everybody. You just need to start winning a few customers or dates. See how this is like Tinder? Spend a little time looking at your ideal customer, notice what they seem to like, and incorporate these type of ideas into your copy. Create some copy and learn what connects to the mind of your customer. No mental connection will lead to no dates or poor market feedback.

The physical connection

Your digital visual presence is like your physical connection. Before you rush out to buy designer clothes for your first date, find out what your ideal customer likes. Tight jeans? Formal? Summer Dress? Hip Hop Hipster? Brooklyn Hipster? We suggest creating a few basic creative approaches that can are targeted to specific Facebook segments. Grab your iPhone and take some quick product shots. Go to Stocksy get a few good looking people and start putting together some fonts. No money? No problem. Makerbook is like H&M you can find a designer knock off that is free or cheap that gives your creative some sex appeal. Now start placing your text into your ads and see how they relate. Use Shopify to set up a quick shop. If you spend a couple of hours playing, you will have it down. Don’t worry about getting it right just worry about making progress. Your clothes from H&M are bound to go out of style like your creative, so don’t get too attached.

Did he just check me out…He must of read this article… I am feeling it…

The Heart Connection

Men and women would like to think that they are rational. However, if they were, they would never date anyone in the first place. Like dating, most things that people sell were never needed in the first place. Think about creating desire in the heart of your potential customer. You need to make sure that your website mobile, desktop, and tablet do a fairly decent job of telling your story. Start with a landing page — don’t worry about having the whole thing complete. Remember, we are dating to discover your match, we are not intent on getting it perfect on the first attempt. The heart is desirous, make people want what you are selling. Get them to imagine what life would be like with your product or service. Do they suddenly have better friends? Do they look cool? Are all the girls jealous; are they making screw faces? Are they envy of the world? While the mind needs to be satisfied, it’s usually the heart that purchases in the end.

It’s Date Night AKA Ad Testing

I hope she likes this spot I picked… A little Nature… A big Power Plant….

Now put your head, your physical self and heart game all together for your date night. Eventually on Tinder, you are going to get some dates, and you finally have to spend a little money, even if you just do coffee. This is just like advertising, set aside some money and begin to run some Facebook and Instagram ads. Start seeing what type of feedback you get. You will learn a lot quick. You may learn that your ideal customer is not what you expected.

This is also true of dating, many times our first boyfriends and girlfriends were totally awful for us. Ads that don’t produce are like the bad boyfriend or horrible girlfriend; your need those experiences so your can appreciate someone who is great for you. Use tools like Usertesting.com to learn what people are experiencing when they see your approach and listen to what they say. This feedback is often better than numerical data. Learn the productive conversations and visual styles that work in attracting ideal customers before walking down the aisle with your ad budget. Spending a ton of money on advertising without any knowledge can turn into a messy break-up, don’t get penciled into the blackberry, everyone’s pointing the finger and suddenly fighting about who is keeping the dog.

So if you got this far and don’t get it, here is the easy-to-understand approach:

  • Create some headlines, CTAs and basic descriptions
  • Pull together some visuals
  • Put them together and do some testing
  • You will begin to learn who your ideal customer is
  • Now go after those people and win their hearts

How to know you have met the one

I think I found the one… She is into sitting in weeds near power plants and shipping yards like me…

With a little effort, a little money and a little game you will be on your way to getting a few sales. These initial sales and Facebook likes will begin to help your create a lookalike group. Lookalike groups are like marriage material. Lookalike models allow your ads to be displayed to an audience that has similar online behavior to those who are already engaging and purchasing your products. Go spend time on your lookalike group’s Facebook profiles, lurk a little or a lot. Because the more of these type of people you can connect with, the more you can sell.

With these learnings, you can inform your larger strategies, and have the confidence that it will work. Your time, money and resources will land your ideal customers.

Start dating your marketing before you get married to your strategy. Your ad budget will live happily ever after.