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Are marketers considering learning styles?

Educators are constantly talking about learning styles. Some people are auditory. Others are kinesthetic. As a marketer, are you thinking about the learning style of your audience? I thought about this recently when I was looking for a quiet place. “Why would that matter?” you might ask. What would the level of noise in the room matter when it comes to learning styles? Well, it showed me that my learning style was not auditory. Read on to find out why I say that.

Most of my clients don’t think about the way that their clients learn about new subjects. Much the pity, because so many of them are actually trying to teach people something. If you have a new product that perhaps solves a problem in a new way, your top goal is educating your prospects. If you are in the education business, you must consider learning styles.

Teacher BHodge
Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Don’t worry–I am not going to go all pedantic on you. All I am saying is that everyone has one or two dominant leaning styles. Some of us learn by reading, others by listening , yet others by doing. Your marketing can address all of those styles.

So, if you find that you have written a blog post that truly resonates with your audience–you really found something that hits home–that’s great! But what should you do next? Most of us would say that you should write another blog post on a similar subject. Well, maybe, but I have a different suggestion–that you should do a video or a podcast that is almost an exact replica of the blog post.

That might strike you as odd. After all, you already put that message out. True, but you probably overestimate your reach. Many people don’t read blogs at all–because it is not their style.

That’s what made me consider this post. I get sent tons of audio and video messages, and I listen to very few. Why? It’s not my style. I like to read. I don’t want to listen. Half the time, when I am communing with my computer, I am on a bus or a train or a plane or at a client location–so I am not ready to listen to your audio.

But you might say, “Just bring headphones!” That would work. But yet, I don’t have them. I don’t bring them when I am on the go. Why? Because I don’t want to carry them around.

But that isn’t really the reason. The real reason is that it is not my learning style. I like to read. If you send it to me in text, I will devour it. But I can’t even be bothered to carry around ear buds to listen to what you speak to me.

Everyone has one or two dominant learning styles. If you cater to many different learning styles, then you will reach a wide swath of your customers. If you pound away at the same style each time–not.

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Mike Moran

Mike Moran is an expert in digital marketing, search technology, social media, text analytics, web personalization, and web metrics, who, as a Certified Speaking Professional, regularly makes speaking appearances. Mike’s previous appearances include keynote speaking appearances worldwide. Mike serves as a senior strategist for Converseon, an AI powered consumer intelligence technology and consulting firm. He is also a senior strategist for SoloSegment, a marketing automation software solutions and services firm. Mike also serves as a member of the Board of Directors of SEMPO. Mike spent 30 years at IBM, rising to Distinguished Engineer, an executive-level technical position. Mike held various roles in his IBM career, including eight years at IBM’s customer-facing website, ibm.com, most recently as the Manager of ibm.com Web Experience, where he led 65 information architects, web designers, webmasters, programmers, and technical architects around the world. Mike's newest book is Outside-In Marketing with world-renowned author James Mathewson. He is co-author of the best-selling Search Engine Marketing, Inc. (with fellow search marketing expert Bill Hunt), now in its Third Edition. Mike is also the author of the acclaimed internet marketing book, Do It Wrong Quickly: How the Web Changes the Old Marketing Rules, named one of best business books of 2007 by the Miami Herald. Mike founded and writes for Biznology® and writes regularly for other blogs. In addition to Mike’s broad technical background, he holds an Advanced Certificate in Market Management Practice from the Royal UK Charter Institute of Marketing and is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. He also teaches at Rutgers Business School. He is a Senior Fellow at the Society for New Communications Research. Mike worked at ibm.com from 1998 through 2006, pioneering IBM’s successful search marketing program. IBM’s website of over two million pages was a classic “big company” website that has traditionally been difficult to optimize for search marketing. Mike, working with Bill Hunt, developed a strategy for search engine marketing that works for any business, large or small. Moran and Hunt spearheaded IBM’s content improvement that has resulted in dramatic gains in traffic from Google and other internet portals.

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