Telemarketing Software Featured Article

When Criticism Draws Buyers: Turning Critics into Salesmen

May 30, 2014
By Steve Anderson - Contributing Telemarketing Software Writer

It may be a puzzle to some, but thankfully, there are examples aplenty in terms of product market segments that have this issue afoot. A funny sort of development has emerged, and it's one that Business2Community recently took a closer look at; one of the best selling tools out there may be a product's critics, especially if those critics are put to use to improve the customer experience.

The idea expressed by not only Business2Community but also by Forbes turned to the field of summer movie marketing to draw more concrete examples. Summer movies—particularly this summer—are very heavy on the geek demographic. Between the recent releases like “Godzilla” and “X-Men: Days of Future Past” and what's set to come out over the next several months including the long-awaited “How to Train Your Dragon 2” as well as “Transformers: Age of Extinction”, it's pretty prime territory for the geek segment. In fact, many of these geeks in question likely either have tickets pre-purchased for these titles, or are at least planning to do so when the films arrive.

That's a sale already made, so why market in that direction? That's one critical point made here, but it goes on past that. Consider further that many of these geeks in question will become the “loyal opposition”, so to speak, picking apart the movies in question, finding all the continuity errors and the canon-busting elements and the bungles in visual effects work and so on. Some might think that this critical content will turn off buyers, but it can actually be put to good use.

So while the critics are buying the material in question—in this case, movies—said critics are also providing what would seem to others like a lot of reason to not buy the material. That's where the astute marketer can step in and use these reasons to not buy to form a marketing concept of why the product should be bought. In one sense, take the material that's provided and refute it, offering up explanations as to why an assertion is incorrect, if available, and show that the marketing is clearly engaged in the product and customer satisfaction with same. Additionally, where refutations can't be had, use the material as the basis for improvements. A lot of people saying the plot is sluggish? Pick up the speed next time. A lot of people saying a new smartphone doesn't easily connect to Wi-Fi? Great point to improve with a software update.

Finally, consider using the critics' commentary as the basis for long-term plans. There's already been a sale made there, but it could turn out to be a poison pill; that sale could be the basis from which 10 sales are lost, or potentially even more. So being prepared—using among others the techniques outlined above—should prove to be a long-term benefit for the company that's ready to put such tools to use.

Criticism can be a difficult thing to handle. Hearing hard work belittled by outside interlopers can be tough to swallow, even when said interlopers are phrasing criticism constructively, pointing out places to shore up a weak narrative or a lack of performance on video throughput rates. But putting criticism to good use can improve future—or even current—product lines, so being ready to take advantage of criticism, often offered up at no charge and complete with a sale, can be a great place to make products better and improve the bottom line down the road.

Edited by Rory J. Thompson