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Negative Marketing for Crafters

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Looking for a new-to-you way to market your craft business? Let me introduce you to negative marketing. It commonly used by big box stores, and once I explain it to you – you’ll start seeing it everywhere. Negative marketing sounds bad, but it isn’t. Let’s take a look.

What is Negative Marketing?

  • Marketing that taps into the buyer’s emotions of anger, rage, annoyance, jealousy, and other negative emotions.
  • Using words with a negative connotation or writing/speaking in a negative voice.
  • Sharing (negative) bad experiences in an effort to connect with customers.
  • Focusing your advertising on the customer’s problems or things they are missing.

What is Not Negative Marketing?

  • Publicly shaming or making fun of your customers.
  • Encouraging your customers to belittle other customers.
  • Leaving fraudulent negative reviews on your competition’s social media profiles.

Examples of Negative Marketing in a Silhouette or Cricut Small Business

I know that negative marketing can be a bit obscure. So, I’ll illustrate with a couple of examples:

  • As a seller of digital cut files, I post this on Facebook: “Don’t you hate it that it takes so long for custom cut files to be designed? Me, too! That’s why my company guarantees custom cut file requests in less than 24 hours! Message me to learn more.” In this example, I’m connecting with the customer and their problem. I focus on the problem (slow delivery of custom made cut files) and offering a positive solution (working with my company which guarantees cut file in only 24 hours).
  • As a seller of handmade gifts, I use this copy in an ad: “Don’t show up without a gift.” with a link to my website. In this example, I’m using negative language (don’t) and alerting the customer to a potential problem: showing up to the party without a gift. Of course, a link is included with my ad to lead customers to my website.
  • As a seller of heat transfer vinyl, I use this wording on a social media network: “It infuriates me when I receive packages that are poorly packed! What about you? Here’s how I make sure your vinyl gets to you safely (with picture of my packaging).” In this example, I’m tapping into an annoyance and anger spot with buyers – poorly packaged craft supplies. Of course, by posting a photo of my awesome packaging, I’m also solving the buyer’s problem.

Why not give negative marketing a try? Studies have shown that the human mind has a bias towards negativity – and a little bit of it can go a long way. Of course, there’s a fine line between always being mad or a downer and using it sparingly!

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