Spear Fishing vs. Net Fishing

Spear Fishing vs Net Fishing

If you browse my work, you’ll notice that a lot of the demand generation techniques I’ve used successfully have a few features in common.

✔ Provocative

✔ Humorous

✔ To The Point

The reason for this is simple: decision-makers and VITOs are inundated with poorly targeted marketing campaigns and sales offers.

Think about the last time you received a cold call from someone who had no clue what your needs were.

Then think about the last bland, boring piece of spam or junk mail that you picked up and thought “Wow, they really wasted 50 cents on that.  I’m not even in their target market.”

Both cold calling and direct mail blasts are an example of what I call Net Fishing.  You cast the net far and wide and haul in a bunch of random fish.  Then you pick the ones you want and throw the rest back in the water.  This is a very inefficient way of marketing any kind of large, complex enterprise solution.  What ends up happening?  The same little fishies jump into your net every time, while the whales happily swim free.  And let me tell you something — you want to land a whale, not a bunch of guppies and the occasional carp.

On the other hand, Spear Fishing takes the point of view that there are a limited number of companies that are worth going after — only a few whales worth hunting.   They need to be studied.  Understood.  Analyzed.  And once you know the spot on the underbelly where that ONE single whale is most vulnerable, then you craft a highly targeted and precise marketing spear intended to hit that whale and make an impact.

Let me give you a few examples of well-crafted marketing spears:

✔ A web demo custom-built for one customer to solve their KNOWN problem.
✔ An unusual or provocative physical (dimensional) piece mailed directly to the customer that references something you know about their business.
✔ Something so outrageous that they can’t help but to remember you.  Sending the CEO a singing telegram with lyrics written about their business problem might fall into this category.

The other great (or terrible) thing about Spear Fishing is that because it is time- and labor-intensive, practically no one takes the time and effort to do it.  But if you do it right, the recipient will sit back and say “Holy %$#@ — those guys must really want my business”.

It’s your choice — are you hunting guppies or whales?