Category Archives: Marketing

The worst kind of information……

………that which you got from your neighbor.

It doesn’t matter if it is an email pass-along, gossip or the latest on a product recently seen on television or the internet or maybe a ten word tweet. Information gathered in this fashion is believed according to the number of repetitions within the community of the individual receiving it. Its value is based not on truth but on popularity.

This is the yardstick used by marketers.

As a marketer, I rarely possess a measure for the ethical considerations of the individuals who populate my target market. I can follow my own rules of good conduct. I can add a little music. If I make a sale I wrap my product and send it on its way.

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R and R Means More Than Rest and Relaxation

 

zpfile017

Any remark can be made to sound truer than it really is if offered as a quotation. In the case of a filmed testimonial, “seeing-is-believing” becomes the clincher.

Everything is described as faster, shinier, less expensive than competing products.

This kind of advertising is not expected to last. Soon, the sameness of the product propaganda becomes the most important part of the message; responses wither; interest wanes. And a new product is offered which is greener, lighter in weight and is accompanied by “not one, but two additional items at no additional cost and you can  try them for a month for only fifteen dollars.

And then there is the “Everything in our store costs less” approach which means that some of the merchandise is iffy.

I was raised in a family business where quality was always the message. Growth was slow and the principles of “repeat and referral” kept advertising costs to a minimum.

So where do you fit into this picture?

Lee_Broom
Lee Broom

 

Apes Parrots Lemmings and Marketing


Ilustrations from Wikipedia

There is a learning principle that appears to hold for all creatures. It seems to be nearly as true for humans as it is for apes, parrots and lemmings. This most popular method for learning is the practice of mimicking others of our ilk. When reading of Michelangelo or Edison or Picasso we like to compliment ourselves for being related to such creative history makers and yes, we all have a story describing a moment in our personal histories demonstrating our own particular genius for solving problems and contributing to the overall good of us all.

But we still prefer to make our choices by acknowledging and repeating the claimed successes of friends, family and perhaps the promise of a degree of fame.

As marketers, it is left to us to overcome buyer’s resistance to new products; we do this by using the information gathered by the social scientists among us and adjust our market plans accordingly. We then must overcome unforeseen problems as soon as possible after the product reaches a predetermined saturation point.

Shortly after WW II, the electric blanket was introduced. Instantly popular, the product was an immediate success. However, when an unseasonably cold winter set in, complaints started coming back that these electric blankets were not providing enough warmth. Millions of dollars and trillions of words pursued a re-education program of how to properly use the electric blanket.

Heat rises and therefore maximum comfort would not be achieved if snuggling beneath the blanket; it must go under the bottom sheet. The habit of blanket-use acquired over centuries, resisted all attempts to refine the images supported by words and concepts like “snuggle” and “comfy”. Going to bed was for most Americans a ritual with strong expectations of release from a day of struggle and stress.

Eventually, it occurred to someone to give the electric blanket a new name. Soon it was being marketed as a mattress pad. That was nearly two decades ago. Googling nomenclature for both products quickly reveals that there are to this very day, five times as many listings for the tag “electric blanket” as for “electric mattress pad”.

THE WORST KIND OF INFORMATION

Lee_Broom

THE WORST KIND OF INFORMATION

…that which you got from your neighbor.

It doesn’t matter if it is an email pass-along, gossip or the latest on a roduct recently seen on television or the internet or maybe a ten word tweet. Information gathered in this fashion is believed according to the number of repetitions within the community of the individual receiving it. Its value is based not on truth but on popularity.

This is the yardstick most often used by marketers.

As a marketer, I rarely possess a measure for the ethical considerations of the individuals who populate my target market. I can follow my own rules of good conduct. I can add a little music. If I make a sale I wrap my product and send it on its way.

Doing Business in the Twenty First Century.

 

Who are you?

Do I trust you?

Am I afraid of it?

Will this work for me?

Who says it’s important?

What will my peers think?

These are all variations of one complicated thread: how will this process make me feel?

Even though that’s all we care about, marketers seem to think it’s fine to spam, fine to focus on specs and important to talk mostly about price.

Seth Godin. Seth’s Post. 8.25.2012

For 200 years the questions mentioned above have been the driving force behind doing business in America. The reputation for quality and integrity were the secret of thirty years of business success with Lee Broom Gallery and Design. These were also the traits that led to the demise of these stores. Today, Wal-Mart competes mainly with Amazon; hanging out at the mall is being replaced by Facebook and Printerest. I’ll never return to a marketplace that has a market share of 50000 when I have internet access to millions. Quality? Sure I’ll always provide quality.Perfection?  Not so much.

Lee Broom. ninetydaywonder.wordpress.com. 8.25.2012

if only

5 5 2014two apples

If only there were verifiable truths we would have stopped seeking answers to life’s biggest questions centuries ago.

Newton saw the apple drop and called it gravity.

Johnny saw the apple fall and said “This is what the world needs”.

Einstein saw two apples drop and discovered the theory of relativity.

The worm saw the apple before it dropped and nibbled till it dropped from exhaustion.

See what I mean? I hope that clears everything up.

Oh yes, and then there were these two guys, Wozniak and Jobs.

I guess that about wraps it up for today.