Saturday, August 28, 2010

Stand out in a Crowd

On Being Different and getting Noticed: (New Media Designer Andrew Pougher discusses - )

For Fifteen long years after sliced bread was invented in the 1910s sales and interest in it failed and nobody wanted it until "Wonder" brand came along.
Tablet PCs had been around since 2001 but no one really cared until Apple made it truly amazing with their iPad and have eclipsed sales of all other portable devices with that now.

Spreading it about

Whether you are in business, run a coffee shop or any kind of business you need to be able to spread those ideas to win in the market. Spreading ideas is easy due to TV and now mobile and web from a practical way... as you make money you can re-invest. Like what if your business was to get onto the home page of google!! imagine... you would win right? They would interrupt your day, touch you and reach your attention.

But I don't care

The thing is, companies spend thousands and sometimes millions on their product to get it under the noses of the public, getting their products into shelves in supermarkets along with all the other products because they want your attention and they want to make sales, but if you don't realize you have the problem that they are trying to solve, be it a headache pill as you don't have a headache, or an interest in golf clubs as you don't even play, then you don't really care and will not buy.

There are magazines on subjects which only a distinct few of the buying public will ever address. Trainspotting, cameras, unicycles, paint types... and if you don't care about any of those subjects then you will not buy that product. It means nothing to you. So they spend HUGE money on adverts, say Dulux paint, but if your walls look OK to you, you are not going to buy that paint or do you have a reason to buy their paint. In theme with Copernicus, "The world does not revolves around us." Consumers don't care about you as they have so many more choices now and much less time. He also said "Mathematics is written for mathematicians." the product suits those who are into that subject.

Too much choice! Ahh
The obvious thing to do is to just 'ignore' if this thing happens. Too much data, info or reason. Consumers get blind to new ideas so fast. An iPad looked like a new idea when Apple launched it. It was already about, but now many companies are bring out there version or ratcheting up their old models as they want part of that trend which Apple made remarkable. As choice max's out, interest drops as its common place.

I remember my 1st mobile phone in 1995. Walking down a street in Ealing, West London being called "w**ker" as I stood out of the crowd as my phone rang. It challenged people, made them look, comment because at that time it was not common place. And now, well... you can see for yourself. Walking and phoning, texting, listening are all common place and not a shout of "W***" can be heard.

Being Remarkable & Different

What decides what gets bought, purchased, built and sold, is something which is worth talking about, making waves, making changes and really doing something for people who really care. Every week a new DVD comes out and tops the film charts of its week not because its a long term classic, no, but because its the week it came out. Its New , fresh and different for a short while. Top of shelf, near to the till, front of a magazine for a flash, and people buy it.

Don't interrupt people with things that they don't want unless its new and remarkable and different and will challenge the status quo.

This chair (Herman Miller Aeron) changed the market for the Office Chair which already existed and was just a business purchasing formality, yet made it into a status symbol and office hierarchy. By reinventing what it meant to sell a chair no less and what you, the consumer would feel by owning it.

A lot of marketeers angled on was making average products for average people, thats mass marketing. Go for the center bulge (see bell diag) of the buying public, ignoring the early adopters or those who really pay attention to their subject of need and desire.

People who care

Most of the middle market don't give a damn when you market to them, there is not the passion and desire of the Early adopters who will, with passion take your product as they are listening and waiting and will make sure everyone else knows about it.
I confess I do this with my tech products. I have worked long enough with computers to know that my Laptop is amazing and delivers wonderful results and I have never, ever had a virus. So, I tell people about it and wax lyrical about my product. I am not paid to, but I want to. Now, over 8 of my friends now use this product. Its a desire to want to talk about this product to my peers, as its relevant to them and they care. If they never used the product I use then they wont care and move on to another subject to talk about.

Many music bands will sell online only now. Their followers are unique, dedicated and passionate about them. No longer does the band need to use a promoter. MySpace allowed people to be their own marketeers and soon, bands and singers were launched as there were people who cared about music, and they connected.

You know who is remarkable? People who have made a difference not by marketing and advertising but by being remarkable and unique of their time., no marketing or advertising but started by one guy , Craig Newmark who began the service in 1995 as an email distribution list of friends, featuring local events in the San Francisco Bay Area, before becoming a web-based service in 1996. His site now serves over twenty billion page views per month with proposed possible revenue of $150 million (in 2007). (See Wiki)

Remarkable, timely and different. What do people really want, and design it!.

Don't be safe... be different and stand out. Be at the risky edge of design and don't be confined by normality. It wont stand out. The world got all fuzzy with visual noise and awash with media.

Figure out who cares about your product or services and are interested in what you have to say, and sell to them.

Andrew Pougher can be contacted at BHC, or in Chicago where he specializes in business development and new media.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Plan! Cram! Pray!

Any marketing strategy I've ever been part of, they all fall into one of three categories: plan, cram or pray! Planned strategies are for the person who always had their homework done 1 week before it's due. Crammed strategies are for the daring and sometimes reckless. Wait until the last moment, pull an all-nighter, don't yawn through the pitch meeting and get to bed as soon as possible!. And lastly, pray. Pray that being super sorry that you didn't plan a strategy or cram because you just had to watch American Idol, that your prayers will be heard by the great marketing powers. And no one will notice the obvious shortcomings of your efforts.

I have Catholic Tourette Syndrome. I spontaneously confess my sins of every nature without the slightest arm twisting. (You should see me on a first date! If it lasts longer than 30 minutes I call that a whopper of a success and start picking out china patterns!) (Of course, I confess this to my date as well.) As we get to know one another, know that any S.C. (spontaneous confession) will be coded with S.C. so you are aware it came from my Catholic up-bringing. (My confirmation name is Monica.) (I chose it because M. Costello thought it was ok. S.C.)

Let’s get started. Not a moment to loose!!! I am on a mission of thrift in both my personal life as well as professional life. I’ve always been thrifty (a.k.a. cheap) but these days it’s even worse. Do I really have to wash rinse and repeat with shampoo? Isn’t that an indulgence I can’t afford any more?

I’ve started my own Marketing company based on over 15 years of thrift and results. If you are one of those marketers with unlimited budgets then these tips may not seem relevant to you. (Like how I tune out as soon as my mother starts any conversation with , “This is so easy to bake. All you have to do is …” I’m out! S.C.) (Because it’s always so much easier to buy J ) But if you adopt the Walker e3 Strategy for your marketing programs, you will feel so much more confident if you are ever called upon to justify your programs and results.

From over 15 years of marketing experience, I’ve been part of some great marketing programs that delivered the goods as promised. And I’ve also been part of some marketing efforts that were a total waste of time and money. Over the years, I’ve learned better ways to say “This is a total waste of time and money” which I’ll share with you in the coming months. (If you have an emergency need for better ways to say “It,” e-mail me!!) How do you know if your marketing strategy is on the right track? Simple. Ask yourself these three qualifying questions.

1) Is your marketing strategy Effective?

2) Is your marketing strategy Efficient?

3) Is your marketing strategy Economical?

Hmmm … interesting. Stop back in soon. Got some great cautionary stories to share regarding “Effective” so you won’t make the same mistakes I have.