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Main » 2012 » February » 8 » The Power of the Rule of Three in Marketing Your Small Business
The Power of the Rule of Three in Marketing Your Small Business
What, exactly, is the Rule of Three? It's a rule that basically states
that more than three "whatever" is confusing and overwhelming – either
visually or mentally, or both.
That makes it especially helpful if you're the kind of entrepreneur who
likes to give too much…As in: too many options, too much rambling
content, too many bullet points, too much info crammed into a speech,
The Rule of Three is a fascinating thing. Why? Because it seems to
apply in so many different situations. And many of these situations are
related to effectively marketing a business. So if you're an
entrepreneur, it makes sense to understand how, when and why to apply
Oftentimes, the reality is less is more. The Rule of Three can help
ensure you aren't overwhelming your clients and prospects. That
translates into more sales.
Below are seven ways you can put the Rule of Three to use in marketing and growing your small business.
1) Follow up. How many times should you follow up with
a prospect? A minimum of (you guessed it) three times. More is better!
How often do you give up after one or two calls or emails? If you're
not following up AT LEAST three times you're definitely losing
potential clients and projects.
2) Marketing tactics. I recommend my clients never try
to implement more than three new marketing tactics at a time. It's
just too much because each one is going to require multiple steps to
execute. Plus you need to track response.
While you might eventually have more than three tactics happening
simultaneously, if you overload yourself in the beginning you won't be
able to execute any of them well or on a consistent basis—if ever.
3) Business cards. Take a look at a few business
cards. Some look professional, clean and easy to understand. Others
have way too much stuff crammed into way too small a space.
Chances are the best ones have no more than three blocks of information
(whether that's text or graphics) in the layout. For example, logo in
the corner is one, name and title in the middle is another, and contact
info at the bottom is a third.
Stick with the Rule of Three here and avoid distracting background
images or the urge to squeeze every possible bit of info on one card.
You'll end up with a better result that makes a more professional first
4) Fonts. Never use more than three fonts on a page –
online or in print – (and your logo font does count as one). Having too
many fonts looks juvenile and unprofessional. Instead, choose one font
for body text and one for headlines or callouts, and leave it at that.
You can always use boxes, bolding, underlines, colors and italics for
5) Colors. Looking for new colors for your brand?
Trying to decide on the colors for your Website? Or that new flier, ad
or promotion? Again, the Rule of Three is your friend. Choose one color
to be your main color, then one that compliments it, and one to serve
as a highlight color.
More than that and your logo, brand and marketing start to look like a car wash poster made by high school students.
6) Speaking points. The human mind can only absorb and
remember so much information in one sitting. So when you plan a
speech, talk, teleseminar or Webinar, don't overwhelm listeners with
everything you know. Instead choose three points, tips or topics to
delve into and save the rest for another time.
Not only do you avoid confusing or overwhelming the audience, but you keep them coming back for more.
7) Bullet points. Not sure when to use bullet points
instead of a list in regular paragraph format? Rule of Three to the
rescue again…If you've got more than three things in your list, it's
time to switch to bullets.
If you've got at least three things in your list, bullets are optional
but allowed. Less than three and you want to stick with paragraph
So next time you're working on any piece of marketing, branding,
copywriting or advertising remember the Rule of Three. You'll look more
professional, be easier to understand, and make a much bigger impact
that's going to grow your business!