By Tedd Campbell
Joseph Wilson’s recent blog about what Hollywood can teach entrepreneurs got me thinking about MacGuffins, a
common plot device that filmmakers use to jump-start their movies.
Essentially, a MacGuffin is an excuse to tell a story. It’s what initially drives the plot forward, triggering a chain of events that inevitably leads to a satisfying resolution (and hopefully lots of buzz from happy audiences).
Remember the One Ring in The Lord of the Rings? How about the briefcase in Pulp Fiction or the Holy Grail in The DaVinci Code? You guessed it, they’re all MacGuffins.
If you’re in sales and marketing at a B2B company, MacGuffins are your bread and butter. Here’s why.
During the B2B sales cycle, meaningful customer interactions are fuelled by information, so you need to serve up compelling content. For example, when you’re trying to start a new conversation with an existing customer, you must provide a strong incentive for her to come to the table. You need a MacGuffin. You need a spark to ignite the discussion.
Newsletters are popular MacGuffins. They allow you to reach out to prospects on a regular basis and broach a variety of subjects. In each edition, you can feature new products or services, offer advice, advertise special events, and more.
If you’re trying to connect with a specific prospect who’s at a particular stage in your lead nurturing process, then you need a MacGuffin with more focus, more substance. A case study, maybe. Or a datasheet. Perhaps a webinar or white paper. Any one of these might be appropriate, depending on the circumstances.
The important thing is to understand your customers’ needs and serve them the right content, at the right time.
Before you reach out to prospects, be sure to ask yourself, “What’s the right MacGuffin?”
If you know that, then you’ll have a better chance of initiating a chain reaction that ultimately leads to a sale.
Tedd is the founder and principal writer at C Worthy White Papers Inc. C Worthy develops world-class white papers for B2B technology companies and service firms that want to enhance their credibility, generate more sales leads, and serve their customers better.
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