Monday, September 24, 2012

Better than great.

I learnt an important lesson today.

I am currently developing a workshop for a client who's looking to overhaul a particular aspect of their service.  I have been interviewing stakeholders, determining where the company wants to be and ultimately, what they think they need to do to get there. 

I found myself compiling a list of the top 5 or 6 things that I'd heard, putting together a hit list to be checked off one by one.

Then I was challenged - and rightly so.

In hindsight - in this day and age it's fair to assume that every company worth its salt can focus its energies and be great at something.  But ultimately that shouldn't be why they speak to people like us.  Yes, our role is to understand the needs of the business and where they see it going, but it's then our job to take them out of their comfort zone - helping them to think in a manner far removed from their existing norms, their competitors and category expectations.

What if instead you re-framed the task as: 'how do we make them famous for it?'

With this as a goal, your competitive set becomes wider and the solutions you discover invariably better.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

When unique misses the selling point.

I saw this ad last night and it made me think...

We all know the power of addressing consumer pain-points with our advertising, with this being even more powerful if it's met by a genuine product truth.  However, the important thing to remember (which I think this ad fails to) is whether the pain-point being addressed is actually important to the consumer.

While I appreciate that other products own the 'thickness' (Viva) and 'disinfectant' (Dettol) positions, surely there are stronger messages for disposable wipe's than their ability to put time back into our day.

So the question is whether there's a point at which we need to concede to a position that's already owned (i.e. thickness), with our focus then being to communicate how our product uniquely meets these needs or alternatively uniquely communicate how these needs are met, rather than finding a unique position in itself.

Ultimately, if the problem doesn't concern your consumer -  neither will your product.

Here's another....