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A TCI Book Review

Naked Marketing The Bare Essentials

Robert Grede
Prentice Hall, New York, 1997, ISBN 0-13-845322-5

Naked Marketing is a dandy little book (137 pages) filled with marketing basics. Its focus on 'the bare essentials' really is that short and punchy descriptions of fundamental marketing topics. While the orientation of the book is primarily smaller and medium-sized businesses, there is lots of good advice for larger companies as well. The book's handy pocket size (it measures about 4 inches by 9 inches) makes it a very convenient travelling reference companion.

"Today, a great(er) variety of pitfalls awaits the uninitiated. For this reason, before you spend two nickels on marketing, it is important to understand how those nickels should be spent. You need to understand the simple fundamentals of the marketing process. This is not to suggest you, as a small business person, should now concentrate your efforts on learning a whole new field, or abandon your area of expertise. Rather, with an understanding of the bare essentials of marketing, you can better plan your strategy and increase your company's sales and profits." (p. xi)

An overview of the key topics covered by the book is as follows:


Main Topic

Sub-Topics Discussed

What is marketing?
  • " the purpose of marketing is to satisfy needs and wants"
Knowing your market (use inexpensive research to know who your customers are and what they want)
  • primary vs. secondary research
  • advertising research
How to develop a marketing plan (the basics of your strategic marketing plan)
  • the four P's (promotion, place, promotion, price)
  • outline of a marketing plan
How to establish an image for your firm (decide who you are and project that image to the public)
  • Q, S & P (quality, service and price), and the tradeoffs between the three (in other words, you can offer high quality and service, but the tradeoff will be a high price as well - low quality and low service would require a low price)
  • the mission statement
  • promotion of a product image vs. a corporate image
  • name awareness
  • communicating your image to customers
  • choosing an ad agency (evaluating the various functions of an agency - research, media, copywriting, production)
Generating good marketing ideas (apply your imagination to the marketing plan)
  • the 'Four I's' process (information, incubation, inspiration, implementation)
  • the creative process: techniques for thinking 'laterally'
  • use of testimonials
Ten commandments of good copywriting (captivate your customers with words that capture their imagination and sell product)
  1. start with a good headline
  2. make your copy interesting
  3. sell the primary benefit, fast
  4. sell only one thing
  5. use plenty of facts
  6. use testimonials
  7. thou shalt not lie
  8. ignore awards (concentrate on effectiveness in the marketplace, rather than peer admiration)
  9. tell them where and when to buy
  10. review your ad for three key elements: does it have impact? is it focused? is it honest?
Layout and design (use visual elements to maximize your advertising impact)
  • illustrating your ad: rules of thumb
  • laying out the copy
  • using billboards
How to make the most of media (market your company or product using mass media)
  • newspaper advertising
  • magazines
  • radio advertising
  • television advertising
  • cable television
  • reach vs. frequency
  • flighting and front loading
  • multiple impressions
  • the world wide web
Using publicity to stretch your marketing budget (get you name in the paper without having to pay for it)
  • what should be publicized?
  • choosing a public relations agency
  • charitable and philanthropic activities
Introducing a new product (improve your chances for success)
  • the right product
  • the right timing
  • the right people (i.e. ignoring the early and late adopters of a product - who will buy it anyway if it is the right product - and focus on the middle group)
Selling (coordinate personal selling as a key part of the marketing mix)
  • hunting vs. farming
  • suggestive selling (or 'upselling')
  • maintaining a sales force
  • sales letters with impact
  • mailing lists
  • merchandising and point-of-purchase selling
Inexpensive marketing tactics that work (a variety of simple yet effective marketing tactics designed to return the greatest profit)
  • business cards
  • collateral materials
  • door hangers
  • forms
  • on-hold commercials
  • customer questionnaire
  • sponsor a little league team
  • uniforms
Tricks of the trade show (tactics to maximize your company's trade show experience)
  • building your booth
  • attracting customers to your booth
  • some 'dos' and 'don'ts'
How to establish your marketing budget (how much should you spend on promoting your business?)
  • percent-of-sales method
  • objective-task method

Naked Marketing is a great little reference book, and deserves a place on the shelf of every marketer.






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