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Getting to Know Your Designer
In this issue, we examine how fabs work with their design customers, educating them on the critical elements of fabrication needed to be successful, as well as the many tradeoffs involved. How well do you really know your customer? What makes for a closer, more synchronized working relationship?
In this issue, the biggest names in PCB manufacturing share their economic outlook for the upcoming year and beyond. As you will see, they were all bullish on our industry, but there was some apprehension as well. No one wants to get burned by another the supply chain disruption.
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Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
It's Only Common Sense
By Dan Beaulieu
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It’s Only Common Sense: Groundbreaking Marketing Stories From the Past
We’ve been pretty serious lately, delving into ways to improve our sales process, make our companies better, and drive our customers to genuinely love us. It’s time to loosen that proverbial tie and talk about some fun marketing stuff. I did my homework this week and went digging for marketing stories that were not only entertaining but, strangely enough, worked. These are great examples of how thinking out of the box not only worked but changed marketing forever.
Check out these classics I lifted from that great and dusty tome of the history of marketing. Like I tell my pastor, “It’s not lying, it’s marketing.”
P.T. Barnum’s “Feejee Mermaid”
To attract crowds to his museum in the mid-1800s, the famous showman displayed what he called the “FeeJee Mermaid.” The supposed mermaid was actually a cleverly crafted hoax (ya think?), a taxidermized combination of a fish and a monkey. Barnum’s creative marketing generated immense curiosity and foot traffic, helping him make a fortune in ticket sales.
John H. Patterson’s Free Sewing Machine Lessons
In the late 19th century, Patterson, founder of the National Cash Register Company (NCR), came up with the brilliant strategy to sell his cash registers. He offered free sewing machine classes to small business owners. At that time, sewing machines were the hot thing. Everyone wanted to own one and learn how to use it—kind of like those early personal computer days. During these lessons, he would introduce the business owners to his cash registers, demonstrating how they could improve efficiency and reduce errors in their operations. This approach not only boosted sales but established NCR as a trusted brand in the industry.
Ron Popeil’s Infomercials
Now, we all remember this guy. Ron was a prolific inventor and the ultimate salesperson, known for his catchy infomercials in the late 20th century. He demonstrated and sold a wide range of products from the Veg-O-Matic and Pocket Fisherman, to the Smokeless Ashtray and the Showtime Rotisserie. His energetic and engaging, not to mention entertaining-as-heck, informercials showcased his products’ features and benefits. They made him and his products household names. He was actually the father of the impulse-buy, having started selling knives at the Illinois and Wisconsin state fairs before moving on to TV. His informercials revolutionized direct response marketing and generated millions in sales.
David Ogilvy’s Rolls-Royce Advertisement
I love this guy. In the 1950s, he was the king of print ads. For those of us old enough to remember, he was the man in the Hathaway shirt. It was Ogilvy who gave that iconic black-eye patch. He also did the ground-breaking advertisement for Rolls-Royce which, along with a picture of that incredible car, stated, “At 60 miles an hour, the loudest noise in this new Rolls-Royce comes from the electric car.” This appealed to the most discerning (and probably snobbish) of Roll-Royce’s target audience.
Avon’s Door-to-Door Selling
Avon founder David H. McConnell in the late 19th century recruited a group of women to sell his line of perfumes door-to-door. This approach was revolutionary at the time, as it provided women with their own income stream. Avon representatives would also offer beauty demonstrations, building personal relationships with their customers. This strategy not only boosted sales but empowered women in business.
The Tupperware Home Party
A man name Earl Tupper (of course that was his name) invented the revolutionary airtight and watertight plastic container called Tupperware. He tried to sell the product through normal retail channels but failed miserably. That’s when he engaged with a woman name Brownie Wise who, when she saw the product in a department store, also saw its potential. She bought some of the products and began selling them at home parties. She then approached Mr. Tupper about working for the company and selling them through parties. The first party took place in 1948 and the rest is history. She created a groundbreaking approach to direct sales and marketing.
Steve Job’s Product Launch
Steve Jobs was a master of product marketing and launch events. He created a sense of anticipation and excitement by unveiling new Apple products in carefully orchestrated events. His presentations were not just about features and specifications but about storytelling and creating an emotional connection with the audience. This approach led to record breaking sales and loyal Apple customers.
Of course, there are many, many more of these stories, but these are among my personal favorites. How about you? Do you have any stories of your own? Have you ever come up with any groundbreaking marketing that worked or didn’t? Those stories are often even more interesting.
It’s only common sense.
Dan Beaulieu is president of D.B. Marketing Group.
More Columns from It's Only Common SenseIt’s Only Common Sense: Learning Good Customer Service From TV
It’s Only Common Sense: It’s the Little Things That Matter
It’s Only Common Sense: The Benefits of Failure
It’s Only Common Sense: Involve Employees in Creating a Great Company Culture
It’s Only Common Sense: What Are You Afraid Of?
It’s Only Common Sense: Great Customer Service Stories
It’s Only Common Sense: The Other Attributes of a Truly Creative, Innovative, and Successful Salesperson
It’s Only Common Sense: The Modern Way to Sell