Inside-Out Marketing

October 26, 2010 at 9:15 AM Leave a comment

I really liked this infographic from Flowtown. It tells a valuable story.

Often, when clients talk to me about marketing activities, they’re talking about acquiring new customers. I’ll ask them how good they are at upselling and cross-selling, how loyal their customers are, and how many brand evangelists they have. Usually a blank stare follows.

Time and time again we learn that acquiring new customers is much more expensive than cross- or upselling existing ones. So why are people so desperate to spend their money in a less efficient way?

The reason is that marketing executives are measured – or feel they’re measured – by acquisition. Cross-selling doesn’t have the same glamor. It’s not the same feather in their cap.

I always recommend that, before you reach out to the market at large, you do what I call inside-out marketing:

  • Understand what’s happening inside your existing customer relationships
  • Find the profile of your best, most loyal customers. Who are they, what do they look like?
  • Only then, turn outside and find more people that fit their profile.

Inside-out marketing offers a couple of advantages:

  • It helps you uncover unexpected sources of revenue
  • It helps you better understand your value proposition before you take it on the road

So when you reach out to external market, you’ll have a better sense of which value proposition resonates with which type of customer. Your aim will be that much sharper.

Talk to your friendlies first, the ones who want you to succeed. It’s not only gives you a higher marketing ROI, it ultimately makes you smarter and more effective. So what’s not to like?


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Marketing Theory – Practice = Nowhere The Comfort of Useless Marketing Metrics

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Thompson Morrison

Thompson Morrison

About Thompson

As CEO of FUSE Insight, Thompson Morrison uses powerful new web interviewing technologies to help businesses better align their brand with the needs and aspirations of their customers. Learn more at


"The single most significant strategic strength that an organization can have is not a good strategic plan, but a commitment to strategic listening on the part of every member of the organization." -- Tom Peters



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