Make Marketing Suck Less

Tapping into the Customer Awareness Spectrum to Market with Intention


Who are you talking to?

And I don't mean just your right-fit client. You probably know that you're talking to moms, other business owners, or women in tech looking to make a career change.

But who are you talking to in relationship with your business?

Have they been following you for ages, or did they just stumble on your website yesterday?

Because knowing that matters.

Let's talk about why understanding the relationship your potential clients have with you is key and how it's going to make your marketing twice as effective for your business.

(Click play or read the transcript below.)

In this episode you'll learn:

  • The strategic questions you should be asking yourself whenever you're marketing
  • The five core stages of awareness and how your messaging aligns with each
  • The relationship between messaging goals, audience awareness, and marketing strategies

Learn more about Michelle Mazur:

Resources mentioned:

Listen on your favorite podcast player or read the Transcript below:

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:00:00]: Who are you talking to?

And I don't mean just your right-fit client. You probably know that you're talking to moms or other business owners or women in tech looking to make a career change. But who are you talking to in relationship with your business?

Have they been following you for ages, or did they just stumble on your website yesterday?

Because knowing that matters.

So let's talk about why understanding the relationship your potential clients have to you is key and how it's going to make your marketing twice as effective for your business.

So let's do this.

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:01:02]: Welcome to Make Marketing Suck Less. The podcast that knows marketing is freaking hard, especially when you're a solo business owner trying to juggle it all. I'm your host, Dr. Michelle Mazur, author of the 3 Word Rebellion and founder of the Expert Up Club. Forget the latest marketing fads and tactics promising social media stardom. I'm here with research-backed strategies to help you clarify your message and get twice as effective with your marketing. And while I can't promise you'll ever love marketing, I'm here. to make you hate it a tiny bit less.

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:01:42]: Before we go any further into this deep dive on messaging, I wanted to take you on a side quest. Because last time, we talked about voice of customer research and how that can help ground you in your client's experience so your marketing resonates, it's more compelling to them, and it shows your right-fit client that you're the person they should work with. You are the obvious choice for their business.

But on this side quest, I wanna talk about a set of strategic questions you should be asking yourself whenever you're marketing, because these questions dictate the type of message that you're going to deliver to that audience member, that right-fit client. Delivering the right message actually helps you reach your business goals. When I teach messaging, whether it's inside the ExpertUp Club or whether I am doing it for you with my 1x1 consulting services. The foundation of the messaging that I help clients is based on Eugene Schwartz' book called Breakthrough Advertising, and he sets forth a theory called the Customer Awareness Spectrum. And, my friends, this idea is old school. The book originally came out in 1966. So it is time-tested, most copywriters, content marketers will talk about it, but it is very applicable for when you are creating your message.

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:03:52]: So, basically, what Schwartz is arguing, and I think this makes a lot of sense, is that people move through different stages of awareness when it comes to your business, your marketing, and what you offer. He identified five core stages of awareness: the unaware stage, the problem aware stage, solution aware, service or product aware, and then finally, most aware. So when we are thinking about creating our marketing., we have to ask ourselves the question, what is the level of awareness that I'm meeting my audience at? And then is that the stage that I want to reach to hit my goals? Because all your marketing should be strategic, and what you're saying in your marketing needs to reach the right person at the right level of awareness to reach your goals.

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:05:05]: So let's say, for example, that I want to grow my audience because that is my number one goal in 2024 is audience growth. And I think to myself, Michelle, I'm gonna do it with the podcast.

And here's the thing. Podcasts, they reach people who are problem aware, solution aware, and probably even, like, know what I offer, but they are not good for attracting a new audience. So that is the wrong strategy to help me reach my goal. So let's quickly talk about the five levels of awareness.

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:05:55]: So level number one is unaware. These people don't know you. They don't even know you exist, and some of them don't even know they have a problem that needs to be solved. They are unaware of the work you do, how you help people, and guess what? That is a huge proportion of our population, and it is a large portion of your potential audience.

They don't know you yet. Now don't get me wrong, we're not talking about the whole wide world that needs to know you exist. We are talking the very specific type of person you want to welcome into your business. So for me, I am looking for solo established business owners. That is very specific. It is a small number of the population, but there's a large amount of them that don't know I exist yet.

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:07:00]: So the 2nd stage is the problem aware stage, and this is for people who still might not know you, but they know they have a certain problem in their business or in their life. So there's something they're struggling with that they're challenged by, and they are aware of the problem. They're aware of how it's impacting them, but they're not really sure how to go about solving the problem. So in this stage. We are trying to reach people and help them diagnose the actual problem that they have.

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:07:46]: And then this will move them in to the 3rd stage of awareness, solution aware. So when the problem, the issue, the challenge they have is a pain in their ass and it's painful enough that they want to solve it - they start looking for, like, what potential solutions are out there.

So that means they could be looking for you or looking at your competitors. They're evaluating all the different ways they can solve a particular problem. So for instance, I have a problem of my house is messy. Now there's a lot of different ways I could solve the problem of a messy house. Like, I could get a roomba, and my cats could ride it, and it would be super fun for them. I could hire a housekeeper. I could ask my husband to help clean it up. I could create a schedule of when I'm going clean my house and get organized and buy all the products to do that. So we are looking at the variety of solutions.

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:08:46]: And that leads us like, once we find a few solutions we like, we want to go deeper. And this is where we get introduced to stage 4, and that is becoming product or service aware.

So these people are already following your work. They know that you have a solution to a specific problem. Now they wanna know how do you do that solution. Right?

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:09:11]: And then the final stage is the most aware. So they know what you offer, and they're still on the fence. They still haven't committed to your sales process. So you're trying to reach those people in a way that make them raise their hand and say like, Hey. Yeah. I wanna do business.

So knowing what these stages are, are pivotal for you for reaching your goal. So the messages that grow your audience are going to be ones that reach the unaware or problem aware. So I call this the grow stage in the geo framework. So that's gonna be your voice of customer. That's going to be some of the other messaging we are talking about, like problem statements and misconceptions in upcoming episodes.

And then if you are trying to generate leads, you are now in the engage and nurture phase of the geo framework. So that means you wanna start talking about the problem and how you solve it. Not what you sell, but your approach to solving it. And then when you're ready to invite people into your sales process, that's when we start talking about what we offer and then giving them messages that help them feel confident enough to book a call. So messaging around that are gonna be just, like, case studies and your why buy statement and a reason to believe in what you do. So then anytime you're marketing, you have to ask yourself, what is the purpose of this piece of content? Is it helping me grow my audience? Is that my goal? Is it helping me nurture and engage and get people ready for my work, or is it there to invite people in to the sales process because those are your three options. And then once you know what your goal is for a piece of content, you want to focus on the audience who helps you achieve that.

Mr. Michelle Mazur [00:11:24]: So if I want to get more sales, I need to be talking to people who already know what I do and how I solve a problem and give them a reason to book a consult for me. If you are doing lead generation, you need the messages that engage and nurture to get them ready for that consult. So you are aligning your messaging and marketing efforts to the goal that you have. Because if you're sharing unaware, problem aware content and you want to invite people into your sales process, it's not gonna happen because it's a mismatch.

So I really wanted to talk about this as a side quest because I think it's so important to ask the question, like, who are you talking to and what is their awareness of your business? Because all of the messaging that I teach in the ExpertUp Club or in my 1x 1 work is based on Eugene Schwartz customer awareness and understanding who you're talking to and how that person actually aligns with your marketing goals. So if you want to create messaging that actually works for your marketing that actually works to grow your audience, generate leads, and invite people into your sales process. The ExpertUp Club is the place to do that. Our messaging sprints are designed around the customer awareness spectrum, and you can really help hone in and be more strategic with your marketing and your messaging. So you're reaching your business goals, so you're not wasting your time committing random acts of marketing. And overall, this will make marketing suck less. So you can do that at ExpertUp.Club.

Dr. Michelle Mazur [00:13:16]: If the Make Marketing Suck Less pod is making your marketing more effective so that your clients can find and hire you, please share the show with a friend. The easiest way to do that is through pod link. You can find the show at, and that page will allow anyone you share the show with to subscribe and start listening in their favorite podcast player.


The Make Marketing Suck Less podcast is a production of Communication Rebel. Our production coordinator is Jessica Gulley-Ward. The podcast is edited by Steven Mills, our executive producer is me, Dr. Michelle Mazur.

The make marketing suck less podcast is recorded on the unseated traditional lands of the coast salish peoples, specifically the first people of Seattle, the Duwamish people, original stewards of the land, past, and present.

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