When we got the news about the bombing, our first thoughts were of our friend. Did she finish already? We found that she had. How much before the bombing did she finish? We found that she had finished almost an hour before. We breathed a tentative sigh of relief, believing that she would have likely left the finish area during that time.
But my wife posted to her Facebook wall asking if she was OK. Someone else who had heard from her family that she had gotten in touch with them told us that she was OK.
When things like this happen, I think most of us are drawn to thoughts that unify us as a people and as a nation. It wasn’t Democrats or Republicans or Independents that were attacked, it was Americans. Our differences seem smaller, our kindness and understanding increase. Our humanity grows, perhaps like the Grinch’s heart in the famous Christmas story.
We see each other as people.
How long will it last?
That’s up to us.
For marketers, it can be easy to start to see those we market to as numbers. What are our numbers in this demographic? How can we improve them? What did we do that worked? How can we use that understanding to be more effective?
These are all good questions, and they all help the bottom line—something that is very important for businesses.
But we can improve our effectiveness if we always remember that we’re marketing to people. People know the difference; they can feel it—even if they can’t articulate it. They know when you value them as people in addition to valuing their business. They know this because of how you market to them, how you target them, and how you keep your promises (or how you don’t).
Never forget that each of those numbers you work with represents a person.
You can improve your bottom line and make the world a better place at the same time.