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Grassroots Marketing

Grassroots Marketing: Getting Noticed in a Noisy World

By Shel Horowitz

Grassroots Marketing is a great book for small business owners who want to improve their company's marketing and do so inexpensively. The book surveys nearly every marketing method known to man.

Horowitz says that the average U.S. adult is exposed to about 2,000 messages each day. So, entrepreneurs really need to make their message stand out from the crowd. Further, Horowitz argues that the average small business, individual, or organization needs to market very inexpensively.

Horowitz summarizes marketing as 1) Identifying your target market; 2) getting the right information and message to your market; and 3) Convincing the target customer to do business with your company.

Horowitz discusses:

  • Choosing a company name and how it impacts marketing
  • Designing logos
  • Writing press releases
  • Writing professional articles to market your business
  • Using Yellow Page ads effectively
  • Direct mail and when its effective and when its not
  • Bumper stickers and billboards
  • Radio and TV advertising via free publicity
  • Internet marketing and getting listed on search engines
  • Affiliate marketing
  • Telemarketing
  • Personal sales and mulitlevel marketing
  • Word-of-mouth referrals and networking to get them
  • Branding and creating 'buzz'

The chapter about effective copyrighting is especially strong. Horowitz expands the basic AIDA formula (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action) into ten points of effective copywriting.

Horowitz writes: "Great Copywriting:

  1. Catches the reader's attention with something relevant;
  2. Addresses the reader's fears, anxieties, and/or aspirations;
  3. Stresses specific benefits to the user, not the features that lead to those benefits;
  4. Offers to solve the reader's problem, in the most specific terms possible;
  5. Provides the reader with a chance to acquire something of clear value—but only for a limited time;
  6. Pulls the reader toward immediate action;
  7. Shows the consequences of failure to act;
  8. Includes solid, substantial validation of your claim by someone else (a customer, an expert);
  9. Backs up claims with comparisons to competitors; and
  10. This should be obvious—provides the necessary order form, address, and/or telephone number to allow the reader to move forward."

The strength of the chapter on writing effective copy isn't surprising, given that Horowitz is a professional copywriter who helps companies develop advertising ( Horowitz also helps entrepreneurs plan marketing and publicity campaigns.

Grassroots Marketing gives many resources throughout. Not every marketing method discussed in Grassroots Marketing will be appropriate for your company. For example, while a plumber will benefit greatly from a Yellow Page Ad (Horowitz says that people tend to consult the Yellow Pages during emergencies among other occasions), other entrepreneurs will benefit more from direct mail. And, while Horowitz says that balloons with logos are best used to draw people to events, financial advisors will probably not want to place their business logo on balloons.

Grassroots Marketing: Getting Noticed in a Noisy World
Grassroots Marketing: Getting Noticed in a Noisy World

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