After spending an evening with my parents-in-law (enough said), I was driving home, looking forward to a nice relaxing end to my Saturday night when I heard those dreaded words from my wife, “Let’s stop off at the supermarket, I just need to pick up a couple of things”. I groaned and pulled into the car park.
Hating shopping more than almost anything else I tried my old classic line, “I’ll wait for you in the car” – after all she was only picking up a couple of things and I could use that time productively on my iPhone to catapult some angry birds and complete that level I’ve been stuck on. But she would have none of it.
I finally found myself in the last aisle of the supermarket, holding a shopping basket heavy with the broken promise of “just a couple of things”. While my wife was busy deciding between grapefruit or coconut shampoo (that’s a marketing lesson in itself), something caught my eye – a brilliant marketing ninja move, perfectly executed. See the picture I took of it below:
Tell your audience about all the effort that goes into delivering your product
Can you see the huge difference between the two bottles of shower gel on the right versus the one on the left?
The two bottles on the right are one of the best uses of product packaging I’ve seen in a long time.
The one on the left is boring, safe and almost indistinguishable from the 100 others on the shelf.
How Telling Your Back Story Can Turn A Negative Feature Into A Positive One
It takes a long time to pour a full glass of Guinness. This is because of a process called nucleation in which pockets of air from additional bubbles diffuse through the beer.
While this is now appreciated, originally there was a lot of negative consumer opinion about the length of time required to correctly pour a pint of Guinness from the tap.
During the mid-1990’s Guinness turned all this around with a marketing campaign that sold this negative attribute as a positive feature. They started essentially telling the people how much effort went into pouring the perfect beer.
They emphasized this by saying “it takes 119.5 seconds to pour the perfect pint” and “good things come to those who wait”.
Are You Telling Your Backstory?
Here’s the lesson – tell your audience about all the effort that goes into delivering your product or service.
In your sales copy and even in your packaging give them the details of how you painstakingly prepare or manufacture your product.
This applies equally if you deliver services. Tell them about your skills, how you acquired them, all the checks and balances you have in place and how you train your staff.
The back story of your product or service is an absolutely essential part of your marketing. Don’t let your efforts and skill go unnoticed.
It gives them an assurance that there is substance and quality behind your product. This is especially important if you are pitching a premium product or service.
Looking back at my photo of the shower gel above, you can see that the backstory here takes up the entire space on the bottle. There isn’t even a logo or company name – very smart and very good use of prime real estate!
The fact is, no one cares about your logo, company name or some dubious claim about being the leader in your industry. They want to know about what your product will do for them, and your backstory is essential to this.
So there you have it, I went from being an unwilling participant in a shopping trip to seeing a new twist on a valuable marketing principle – good things indeed come to those who wait.
Now back to assisting my avian allies topple those thieving pigs – they don’t stand a chance!