May 15, 2024
Confused by marketing jargon? 7 terms dog trainers should know

image of a dog wearing glasses reading a book; blog post on marketing jargon

How many times have you read something about marketing and thought “what the heck does that mean?” Plenty, I bet — the industry is full of marketing jargon! 

So today I’m going to give you some definitions of common marketing terms that marketing pros see as self-explanatory, even though they’re used in a very specific way in the marketing context.

Ready? Here’s some common marketing jargon and their meanings:

1: Marketing

At Click & Repeat, marketing has a very precise definition: 

“Marketing is the process by which we can take someone who has never heard of you or your business before, and get them ready to buy.”

So marketing isn’t the blog posts, social media posts, networking, or the ads. It’s the process. There are lots of ways to get that process done, but the posts, networking, and ads themselves aren’t marketing unless they actually move someone closer to spending money with you. 

It’s a subtle but important difference. (Confused? Think of how a reward isn’t a reinforcer unless it increases a behavior. Same thing. The process is defined by the result.) 

This means you have to do some kind of marketing before people who’ve never heard of you can become customers. Without marketing you can only sell to people you know — unless you have an excellent word-of-mouth referral system.

2: Ideal client

Before you start any marketing effort, you need to know who it is you want to attract. “Everybody in my town with a dog” is not the correct answer.

You’d think it’d make life so much simpler if it was. But in reality, marketing to attract everybody is darn near impossible — if you try to appeal to everyone, you end up appealing to no one. Weird but true.

This is why it’s a great idea to spend time thinking hard to answer these questions:

  • Who do you love to work with? 
  • What types of problems do you enjoy solving?
  • Which services can you offer to tie those together?

Floundering? Look back over your favorite clients. Do you have a type? Young singles with sports dogs? Families with dogs and children? Older people with furry family members?  

You can even create an avatar of your best client if it helps. Give them a name. Flesh out some details. The clearer your picture, the easier it is to imagine what they will find appealing. 

You’ve now defined your ideal client and how, specifically, you can help them. 

Keeping those in mind will help you create your marketing plan and effective, targeted content. Without it, you may as well just throw marketing spaghetti at the wall.

You can read more about attracting clients you love here

3: Marketing funnel 

So, you now know who your ideal client is. But what do you plan to do with them? 

How are you going to get them from “I just found out about you” to “just take my money already!”?

This is where understanding the marketing funnel comes into play. Funnels usually go something like this:

Awareness: Someone discovers your business exists. That might be via a social media post, a Google search or even word of mouth.

Consideration: They like what they see but aren’t yet convinced they want to hire you. They might sign up for a freebie (and get on your email list) or start following you on social media.

Conversion: They realize they have a problem and you’re the best person to solve it for them. They sign up to work with you or buy your products.

That’s it, in a nutshell. If you’d like the longer, deeper version, read our blog on marketing funnels…and the hard truth about them.

4: Customer journey

The customer journey is similar, but not quite the same as the marketing funnel. Think of the marketing funnel as the overview of how a person becomes a client with you. 

The customer journey they take through your funnel is made up of the detailed steps they need to move from the top (awareness stage) to the bottom (conversion stage). 

When creating a customer journey (or a customer map as it’s sometimes called) you plan out the ways the customer will interact with you and your business: the touch points on the journey.

Here’s a quick example. Let’s take Jill, who’s contemplating some fun training for her dog, Bertie.

Step 1: Jill sees your FB post about why scent training is good for dogs. From here she starts following you on social media.

Step 2: After following you for a while Jill visits your website.

Step 3: While on your site she signs up for a free download about scent training and is added to your email list.

Step 4: Jill then receives your “nurture sequence” of emails, which she enjoys. At the end of the sequence is an email giving details of all the ways someone can work with you, including your online products.

Step 5: Jill purchases your low cost, short (3 easy lessons!) online introduction to scent training.

Step 6: After completing the intro course Jill decides to sign up to in-person training with you, eventually becoming one of your best clients.

The easiest way to plan a customer journey is to back chain it. That way you’re less likely to miss a step and break the chain — which would result in a customer being unable to move forward to working with you.

5: Know, like, and trust

People buy from people and businesses they know, like, and trust. But what does that actually mean? It’s not quite as obvious as it first appears.

Know

The know part of this isn’t just the surface “I know you exist” but the feeling that “I actually know you” on a personal level. 

It’s the difference between knowing facts about a business and having an individual share personal information about themselves and their business. How authentic you appear to your audience will play a big part in this.

Like

The like part of the equation is intimately tied to the know part. To create the like factor, share and show who you are — your personality, your values, your interests, and your beliefs. 

Obviously, you need to have boundaries between the stuff you’re happy to make public and the things you’d rather keep to yourself! But people can’t like you, what you do, and what you stand for, if you keep those things hidden.

Trust

Before someone will part with money, they need to feel safe about the transaction. Exchanging money for a service has inherent risks so it’s your job to answer their trust questions. Here are some things you can do to help build trust:

  • Share lots of social proof — testimonials are gold!
  • Show evidence of your experience and credentials.
  • Share stories of how you’ve helped others.
  • Be transparent about your process so people know what to expect if they sign up with you.

Together, know, like and trust are the elements that lead someone to become an active advocate for your business — spending money with you, promoting you to others, and helping you along your business journey.

6: Email marketing

Have you ever wondered how email marketing is different to, well, just sending emails? Wonder no more…

Transactional email

Sending one-to-one emails via your normal work email is known as transactional email. Usually, the message contains information that relates to a transaction or process between you and the recipient. This could be scheduling appointments, answering questions, or sending invoices and receipts: the day-to-day admin-type email we’re all familiar with.

Email marketing

Email marketing is a whole different animal. Marketing emails are bulk emails sent with a commercial purpose. They may be newsletters, nurture emails for a sales funnel, emails promoting content, or actual direct sales emails. Marketing emails aren’t sent to individuals — they’re sent to members of your email list. 

Marketing emails must follow email marketing regulations and contain specific information and links. (In some countries you can’t add people to your email list without their explicit permission, so be sure to check the regulations in your location.)

Usually marketing emails are sent via an email marketing platform such as Convertkit, Mailchimp or Active Campaign. This ensures all the tech bits are done properly, your emails get delivered, and your sending domain name doesn’t get blacklisted.

7: ROI – return on investment

The process of marketing generally costs money. You pay to have a website — you may also pay for pay-per-click ads, or for good ol’ fashioned fliers and business cards. Whatever you choose, if you want to look professional, you’ll have to spend some money on marketing.

The question is, was your investment worth the money you spent on it? Calculating your return on investment (ROI) can help you decide what was worth the money and what wasn’t.

In an ideal world, your marketing would work like a money machine. For every dollar you invested, you’d get at least two dollars back. But obviously the world doesn’t work like that! So, you need to calculate your ROI so you know whether those fancy business cards brought you in far more than you spent, or if Facebook ads were worth the investment.

You can find the nitty-gritty details of working out your spend vs your ROI here, so you tip your financial scales in the right direction.

Any questions?

And that concludes our quick look at common marketing jargon you’re likely to stumble across. If you find any more, and you’d like a translation, drop it in the comments below. We’re always happy to help!

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