Marketing Should Underpromise and Overdeliver

Marketing Should Underpromise and Overdeliver

Marketing Should Underpromise and Overdeliver

By John Jantsch

I’ll probably catch some flack from this post, but after 20 years in business I can tell you that one of the worst things you can do is break a promise. Once an expectation is set, no matter how absurd or trivial, failing to meet it is damaging to your business reputation.

The flip side of this lesson, however, is that consistently outperforming expectations, no matter how absurd or trivial, is a great way to build a business reputation.

Underpromising what you can actually deliver may sound a bit slacker driven, but you can also think of it terms of being realistic about what you can, in fact deliver. An eager sales person can easily fall prey to the customer demanding, for no apparent reason, same day delivery. If you can’t do it, say so, your reputation for honesty will go a long way towards landing the next order!

Underpromising can be a powerful alley when it’s combined with overdelivering. I once had two separate clients who had ordered some printed brochures. Both claimed they were in no particular hurry, but wondered when to expect delivery. For one client I casually suggested to expect them by Wednesday. For the next, I thought better and said Friday. Both print orders were shipped on Thursday. Even though both stated they were in no particular hurry – one client was angry, one thrilled.

Don’t take this to mean that shouldn’t set and meet demanding expectionation. Just take your marketing promises up to edge of the overdeliver cliff and take a realistic step back. Chances are you will still outperform most, you will overdeliver on expectations, but you won’t get caught failing to meet your promises.

Order your copy of
The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur

by John Jantsch

“A book that deserves a spot in every entrepreneur’s morning routine.”
—Ryan Holiday, #1 Bestselling Author of The Daily Stoic and The Obstacle is the Way


How to Create a YouTube Channel and Rank Your Videos
Video is an increasingly important marketing tactic. Consumers today have shorter attention spans and are often consuming content on the go. They don’t always have the time to sit and read through a thousand word blog post; they’d much rather catch a four minute video on the topic while they’re riding the train into work […]
The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur Reading: September 18
Marketing Podcast with John Jantsch on The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur – September 18 It’s time for another episode featuring a reading from my upcoming book, The Self-Reliant Entrepreneur, due out in October 2019. If you’ve been following along, you know that the book is structured as 366 daily meditations for entrepreneurs, with readings from famous Transcendentalist […]

Subscribe to the Duct Tape Marketing Podcast

If you know your small business needs marketing, but don’t have the time or resources, look no further. The Duct Tape Marketing podcast covers everything from earning referrals to managing time and being more productive.

close

Get the guide to growing your small business

In the 7 Steps to small business marketing success you'll learn:

  • check
    Why strategy must come before tactics
  • check
    Why and what customers really buy
  • How to make Google your new best friend
  • How to install an integrated marketing system