Roy's Blog: Marketing
November 13, 2010
Belle’s On Thirty Two. Your Neighborhood Kitchen. Fresh, Made-from-scratch Foods! That’s what their advertising says, and I can vouch for the accuracy of their claim.
We are regular customers. Love the atmosphere. Love their humanity. Love their people (all human lovers, by the way).
But what caught my eye recently was the Value Pak they created for their Fans. It demonstrates the BE DiFFERENT Principles that I have been ranting about for the past year or so.
Here is their Offer: It is branded CANUCKS BUS. It consists of a Canucks Game plus the following Value elements:
- The Game Bus to and from the game
All for just $110 per person.
Noteworthiness….. easy for a fan to go to the game and have some beers without fear of an impaired driving charge. For those who don’t know about our stringent laws in BC, blowing over .05 will likely get your vehicle impounded for several days plus a hefty fine. The deterrent is working! But the thing that impressed me the most about this is the pricing approach they used.
They could easily have fallen into the Discounted Bundling Trap by talking about the price as a savings of $X as compared to a “regular rate”. Instead they did the right thing by setting the price at $110 and left the customer to decide if it was equivalent to the value they were providing.
Good strategy by a small business who understands the Value Pak vs Price notion. And, my friends forever by staying away from price discounting and avoiding being forgettable.
November 6, 2010
Zachary Owen is the Owner of Pacific Coast Computer Solutions. He is in the business of providing Residential & Small Business Computer Technical Support. He is a one-man show at the moment but he says that business is growing so he might have to bring on another person to help him.
Why is Zach’s business growing? Well if my experience with him is any indication I know EXACTLY why.
First of all I am one of these people that needs help when it comes to taking care of my computer system. I have a number of computers which over the past several months have been reconfiguring. And I have an iPhone that needed to be integrated into my mini systems change. Way too much for me to handle, so I called Zach. Actually I have been using Zach’s services for quite some time now as I invariably have a problem that ONLY he can solve. He was referred to me by others as a guy who could mesmerize you with what he can do.
OK. So what does he do that makes him Remarkable and Indispensable? What makes him DiFFERENT from the other Geeks out there who all profess to be the best of the best?
Simple stuff really.
> Zach is a Servant of his Fan. He understands that it’s about the customer NOT about his technical wizardry.
> He always has a smile on his face when I open the door. I am glad when he shows up.
> He is available to me on my terms. And to make scheduling a little bit easier he “advertises” his current schedule. Check this out. How many service people do you know put their calendars out for all to see? How’s that for being creative, innovative and making it easy for people? Zach is the ONLY one I have seen do it.
> Zach is FAST. Without sacrificing the quality of the job.He charges by the hour (Verrrrry reasonable rates I might add) and he wants to ensure you get the best bang for your hourly buck. His sensitivity to this I find quite unusual as most of the herd are content to take as much time as they think they can get away with.
> He asks a lot of questions about what changes you want to make.
> And he listens intently and ACTS.
> Then he closes the loop: “Is this what you want?” “Is it working the way you want it to?”.
> He answers e-mails and, yes, telephone calls right away. Responsiveness that comes natural.
Zach get it. His business will grow. His Fans will “sneeze” him to others. His competitors will be amazed with his success.
AND he will continue to give his Gift unselfishly and BE a Learning Experience to others in business.
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Strategic Facilitation: Stand out
Today’s Marketing Doesn’t Cut it
How to Execute Happiness-Through-Experience Marketing
Happiness-Through-Experience Marketing: A BIG Idea
October 28, 2010
Words tell the story. Here’s how marketing is being described today:
> BORING—little product and service innovation. Incremental features produced. Discounted bundling. Pricing deals. Zzzzzzzzzzzz
> LAZY —focus on pushing product capabilities not value creation. Mass market oriented. Few breakthrough distinguishing innovations. Ho Hum. Same old. Same old.
> UNDIFFERENTIATION —more intense competition but fewer degrees of separation among the players.
> PRODUCT EUPHORIA —product flogging continues to be mainstream. Not much energy is being spent on creating VALUE for people.
> PROLIFERATION OF SAMENESS —the more competition in the market, the less differentiation is occurring. The herd has no prime bull.
> BENCHMARKING TO COPY —best in class comparisons lead to catch-up; not distinctiveness and separation.
> GET BETTER NOT DIFFERENT —competitive improvements are achieved but little WOW POWER to separate.
> PRODUCT AUGMENTATION —the primary innovation approach is to incrementally enhance the product line based on what others have done and what the technology can do. Where the hell is the customer?
> ROUND-THE-CORNERS —product compromise to cater to the ‘average’ person. Bland. Serving the lowest common denominator. The marketers take ‘the edge’ off to try and satisfy everyone.
> MASS MARKET OBSESSION —flog stuff at as many average people as you can. Superficial unimaginative segmentation. All things to all people mentality. No remarkability for anyone.
> TECHNO MYOPIA —technical capabilities push marketing. Technical capabilities impress marketers. Where the hell is the customer?
> BLUR—numerous competitors. Sameness abounds. Few individual organizations get noticed. Customer choice is difficult. Can’t spot uniqueness.
This is a glass-is-half-full opportunity for those who want to break away from the pack.
The breakthrough prescription is to THINK:
> BE DiFFERENT as the lens to view marketing possibilities.
> The ONLY Position to express your distinctiveness.
> Creating VALUE for WHO you choose to SERVE. A product is simply a means to the VALUE end.
> Creating Happiness Through Experience. BE Memorable to your customers by helping them engage in delightful experiences, the conduit to Happiness. Happy people tend to be more loyal than the product based transients.
> Small customer groups of interested, turned-on, connected people who will sneeze you to their friends and colleagues.
> Beyond the individual product or service to a holistic value proposition reflecting the broad lifestyle needs of your customer.
> Discovering the deep hidden desires of people. Their secrets will provide the marketing opportunities to shine.
> Customer learning as a core competency. Marker Research is passe. Your organization needs to function like a sponge in every nook and cranny to absorb every bit of customer intelligence possible. Separation from the herd DEMANDS that you know more about your customer than anyone else. You can’t create DISTINCTIVE VALUE if you don’t.
Start the journey of change. Marketing is critical to an organization’s success. Step up.
How to Execute Happiness-Through-Experience Marketing
Happiness-Through-Experience Marketing: A BIG Idea
The Purpose of Business is NOT to Create a Customer
Wanted: Chief Serving Officer
October 25, 2010
In my last Blog Article I introduced the notion of marketing making a right-angled turn from flogging products at people to creating Happiness-Through-Experience Moments for their Fan Tribes. Hell of a shift required for most organizations who are stuck in the product-features-and-benefit-world. But the shift is necessary if you want to distinguish yourself from every other undifferentiated competitor out there who has no other choice but to try and compete on price… no where to go but down!
Happiness-Through-Experience Marketing. It’s about creating EUPHORIA. It’s about stimulating EMOTION. It’s about evoking FEELINGS.
Yes, damn it FEELNGS ARE STRATEGIC!
So how do you go about it?
> You REALLY need to know your Tribe of faithful, dedicated and maniacal fans. Their SECRETS. Their innermost DESIRES. If you don’t know them at a deep level how can you create an Experience that will blow them away?
> What is their Experience End Game? EXACTLY what climax will leave them breathless? What will a successful Experience look like when it is over? Is the Tribe member exhausted? Do they ‘FEEL like a cigarette’? If not you have missed the mark.
> The above points describe the DESIGN Phase. Secrets + End Game = Happiness-Through-Experience Design.
> Assemble the Experience Value Elements to meet your design criteria. The targeted Experience can only be created through the appropriate triggers working in harmony with each other and seamlessly. I call them Value Elements, and they typically are individual products and services. Products and services in this context is ok - in fact they are essential - as they are the vital components that are used to deliver a higher order benefit - the Experience. The emphasis is NOT on what each product or service can do individually but rather what they do collectively to deliver the desired response.
> Start out with your Core product. Use it as the nucleus of the Experience design. Think ADDITIVE and paste additional elements on to your core product based on the value proposition you are delivering. Remember: choose elements that IN SUM will work together to deliver the Experience you are trying to create. A confused arrangement of product elements that don’t work in harmony to deliver a uniform Experience will miss the mark.
> Build Experience partnerships with other organizations who have the products you need to fulfill your Experience design. If you need a travel product, build a relationship with an airline.
> Brand the Experience as something new. NEVER call it a BUNDLE. Bundling is lazy marketing and really is another way of trying to compete on price by discounting.
> Measure your Experience results. It’s not just about how many were sold; rather did you hit your FEELINGS TARGET? Follow up with your Tribe and get their perceptions and also whether or not they intended to sneeze it to their friends.,
Any business can get into the Happiness-Through-Experience Marketing game. Hotels can add local activities to their room and food core products. Retailers can add beverage products. Smartphone suppliers can add numerous applications. Moving companies can add furniture deals and welcome packages. Restaurants can add special occasion celebratory packages. Ski resorts can add summer golf.
You are limited ONLY by your knowledge of Tribe Secrets and your imagination. Oh ya, AND a desire to separate yourself from the confusing undifferentaited herd….