Sock it to me, baby!

I’m not the target market, but I’ve recently received another email from (click to enlarge the image on the right).

It invites me to pick my ‘personality’ from a choice of eight. That links through to the website where they show me socks to match.

I think this marketing approach is genius, for two reasons. First, because we’re in an age when people WANT to interact on-screen, and second, because it takes the customer as the starting point.

Everybody should be doing it.

For example, I wrote a website for a local recruitment company. They started off with a home page that had five icons with captions, one for each of their main services. Recruitment. Head-hunting. Training. You know the sort of thing. (more…)

Carrot or stick?

speed camera signThere is a speed warning sign near my house. If you drive past it faster than 30 mph, it shows the words SLOW DOWN followed by your registration number. It annoys me, because the message is in the wrong order. If they really wanted to catch your attention, it should be the other way round: Name (or number) first, information second.

Another speed awareness sign near where I live shows your speed in red if you are driving over 30mph, and in green if you are driving under 30. However, this assumes everybody understands the colour code: red for bad, green for good. I’m not sure that everybody does. Anyway, it’s too subtle. Drivers are expected to process two bits of information in their brain. One, the speed, two, the meaning of the colour.

These are not speed cameras; just an attempt to make people aware and therefore stop them speeding. There are better ways to achieve that goal. (more…)

How much is that tea-tray in the window?

tea trayImagine you are browsing round Harrods, and see a shiny silver tea-tray for sale at £800.

Now imagine you are browsing round a car boot sale, and see a shiny silver tea-tray for sale at 80p.

It’s the same tea-tray. The only thing that’s changed is the surroundings.

Top tip: Package your products well and you can charge more for them.

When setting your price point, remember that it’s all in the packaging.

But it’s not just what you do; it’s when you do it.


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